Sam Mendes Off 'Preacher,' Says Producer

PreacherBack in 2008, director Sam Mendes said he'd "love to make 'Preacher,' but there’s no script" — a problem that was solved when screenwriter John August came on board the project.

However, Mendes was reportedly linked to the next "James Bond" film earlier this year, which caused some to question whether he'd still helm "Preacher." Now it appears that Mendes has officially left the project behind.

"We were originally talking with Sam Mendes about doing the movie," producer Neal Moritz told Collider. "Sam Mendes is going to go off and do the Bond movie, so there’s another director that we’re talking to right now."

According to Mendes, August's script is very faithful to Garth Ennis and Steve Dillon's epic tale, while leaving enough material to fill more than one film.

"We’ve got a great script," continued Moritz. "John August wrote a script that I think is terrific. The hardest thing was with all the books — the 'Preacher' books —was how to distill it down. And what he made the smart decision instead of trying to cram everything into one, there’s plenty of room for two or three movies. So that’s what he’s done and he’s done a really faithful adaption but made it probably more accessible to a broader audience right now. That movie’s definitely R-rated and it’s an amazing central character."

"I hopefully will be shooting that movie next year," added Moritz.

Moritz also revealed that August has expressed interest in directing the film.

"I had a meeting with [August] recently and we started talking about directors and we were talking about some really lofty directors," said Moritz. "And [August] said, 'You know, if you don’t get one of those [directors], I’d be interested in it.' I said, 'We’ll talk about it.'"

August has previously written and directed a sci-fi drama called "The Nines," which starred Ryan Reynolds and Melissa McCarthy.

Who would you like to replace Sam Mendes on "Preacher"? Who would you cast as Jesse Custer, Tulip O'Hare and Cassidy? Beware the Saint of Killers and let us know what you're thinking in the comment section below or on Twitter!