Bethlehem Press

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Which Bond (James Bond) did it better?

Friday, September 15, 2017 by PAUL WILLISTEIN pwillistein@tnonline.com in Focus

Perhaps no iconic motion picture character has created such a buzz among movie fans as Bond, James Bond.

Bond, referred to by his code name, 007, is a British Secret Service agent who first appeared in a 1953 book by British author Ian Fleming, a former naval intelligence officer who wrote 12 novels and two short story collections that took place 1951-1964.

As a movie franchise, Bond, at 24 (and counting) is only exceeded by “Godzilla,” at 29.

Who is your favorite actor who portrayed James Bond in theatrical releases? Who is the best Bond? It’s a debate that could go on forever.

Who played James Bond the most number of times in theatrical movie releases? That can be determined. Here’s the tally:

Sean Connery: 7

Roger Moore: 7

Daniel Craig: 5 (including upcoming release)

Pierce Brosnan: 4

Timothy Dalton: 2

David Niven: 1

George Lazenby: 1

Here’s a list of James Bond movies, the year of each theatrical release, and those who played him:

“Dr. No” (1962), Sean Connery

“From Russia With Love” (1963), Sean Connery

“Goldfinger” (1964), Sean Connery

“Thunderball” (1965), Sean Connery

“Casino Royale” (1967), David Niven

“You Only Live Twice” (1967), Sean Connery

“On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” (1969), George Lazenby

“Diamonds Are Forever” (1971), Sean Connery

“Live and Let Die” (1973), Roger Moore

“The Man With The Golden Gun” (1974), Roger Moore

“The Spy Who Loved Me” (1977), Roger Moore

“Moonraker” (1979), Roger Moore

“For Your Eyes Only” (1981), Roger Moore

“Octopussy” (1983), Roger Moore

“Never Say Never Again” (1983), Sean Connery

“A View To A Kill” (1985), Roger Moore

“The Living Daylights” (1987), Timothy Dalton

“License To Kill” (1989), Timothy Dalton

“GoldenEye” (1995), Pierce Brosnan

“Tomorrow Never Dies” (1997), Pierce Brosnan

“The World Is Not Enough” (1999), Pierce Brosnan

“Die Another Day” (2002), Pierce Brosnan

“Casino Royale” (2006), Daniel Craig

“Quantum Of Solace” (2008), Daniel Craig

“Skyfall” (2012), Daniel Craig

“Spectre” (2015, Daniel Craig

“Bond 25” (“Never Dream Of Dying,” aka “Shatterhand,” 2019), Daniel Craig.

James Bond’s suave personality set a trend for spy movies, including the 1967 spoof, “Casino Royale,” based on an Ian Fleming work, and “The Avengers,” a British TV show (1961-1969), starring Patrick Macnee as John Steed, and Diane Rigg as Emma Peel, among his assistants.

Bond movies spawned dozens of movie, television, song and pop culture parodies, including: “Agent 8 3/4” (1964); “Dr. Goldfoot And The Bikini Machine” (1964), “Get Smart,” NBC-TV (1965-70), starring Don Adams as Maxwell Smart; “Secret Agent Man” (1966), a hit song by Johnny Rivers; “Modesty Blaise” (1966), starring Monica Vitti; “Our Man Flint,” “In Like Flint” (1966, 1967), starring James Coburn; “The Silencers” (1966), and three other movies starring Dean Martin as Matt Helm; “OK Connery” (1967), starring Sean Connery’s younger brother Neil; “Come Spy with Me” (1967), starring Troy Donahue; “Spy Hard” (1996), starring Leslie Nielsen, and, of course, three “Austin Powers” movies (1997, 1999, 2003), starring Mike Myers.

There are numerous references and tributes to James Bond in books, comic books, video games and movies. In “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” (2015), after Rey (Daisy Ridley) is captured, she’s set free by Stormtrooper JB-007 (played by Daniel Craig).