While he won’t be disappearing as soon as Michael Grandage, who announced last week that he’ll be stepping down at the end of 2011, Nicholas Hytner doesn’t plan to stay on as artistic director of the National Theatre beyond 2013, ten years into the job. Hytner took over from Trevor Nunn in 2003 and, 2006, announced that he was having so much fun that he’d already written to the board asking to extend his five-year contract by another five years. While he still seems to be having fun – and lots of ground-breaking, commercial successes (not least with War Horse and NT Live), at this year’s press briefing to coincide with publication of the National’s Annual Report, Hytner said he had not and will not be writing any more such letters to the board. He would like to stay on through 2013, when the National will celebrate its 50th anniversary, but after that believes it will be the right time to pass on the baton. Possibly to Michael Grandage, who by then will have two post-Donmar years under his belt? Hytner refused to declare a preference for his successor: “my duty is to ensure there’s more than one viable candidate” he said.