The 24th Bond movie will be released within the next three years.

Studio MGM is currently developing the screenplay for the latest 007 installment - which will be a follow-up to 'Skyfall', the most successful Bond film of all time - and the movie should be in cinemas by 2016.

MGM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Gary Barber said the studio also hopes to announce a director in the near future after 'Skyfall' helmer Sam Mendes decided to move on.

Barber said: ''We are very excited about the franchise, we look forward to announcing a director soon.

''We are currently developing the screenplay and working with our partners. We look forward to developing the script soon and signing a director. We are hoping within the next three years it will be released.''

While he gave no details on casting, Daniel Craig has already signed on for two more films in the lead role as the suave spy.

Mendes recently confirmed he won't direct the next Bond film because of his busy schedule.

He said: ''Directing 'Skyfall' was one of the best experiences of my professional life, but I have theatre and other commitments, including productions of 'Charlie And The Chocolate Factory' and 'King Lear', that need my complete focus over the next year and beyond.''