Tag Archives: A2Z

A2Z Reflections and Scavenger Hunt Results

Blue sunrise reflection water

My first reflection is a “pre-flection” ~ that is I’m writing it on Day 1. Yet again, the sign-up sheet didn’t work for me and I am not on the master list. I guess this means I won’t get scads of new visitors reading my 007 posts. Boo! This has happened for a few years of A-Z now and others report the same problem. We sign up, our name appears, and then it vanishes. When we realize this and go to do it again, the process is goofed up (a wrong website appears for our name that can’t be changed), and we have to abandon it. I’m still going to peruse the master list however and visit some new blogs randomly as I have time.

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As I visit blogs from the links on the master list, I have some thoughts. First, it’s fun to see how bloggers use their imagination to come up with such a wide variety of topics. Second, I’m annoyed to see broken links, private sites, and bloggers who aren’t even doing the challenge but have put their names on just to get clicks. Why is this allowed? It’s especially irksome because for some reason my name is missing, as I said. I still don’t understand why. Third, a really weird thing happened when I clicked a name in the middle of the list ~ it redirected to my blog, but it wasn’t my name! This happened at least twice more with other people’s names.

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I’m really pleased I chose Bond as my topic, since it’s so much fun to look up stuff and write the posts, and people seem to be enjoying them. I contrast this to previous years when I didn’t really enjoy my own topic, or at least writing about it every day. Games, romcoms, etc. Next year, I’m thinking to do cats. I love them, both large and small, and am constantly reading about them anyway. My favorite post on my own blog for 2021 A-Z is about Roger Moore.

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I’m nearing the end ~ just wrote my “Y” post and will do “Z” tonight probably (it’s only April 20). I really want to see the Bond films I’ve missed now and also rewatch the others. This was super fun! Thanks to John Holton and Co. for keeping April A2Z going every year.

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The Scavenger Hunt was a fab idea…

A for Apple found at The Bag Lady.

B for Bear found at Less Beaten Paths.

C for Cobweb found at Galeria Redelius.

D for Dragon found at C.E. Flores.

E for Evil found at Salted Caramel.

F for Flowers found at Poolside Musings.

G for Game found at A to Z.

H for Hat found at Words on a Page.

I for Island found at Martha Reynolds.

J for Jewelry found at Galleria Redelius.

K for Key found at Seaside Simplicity.

L for Leaves found at J Lenni Dorner.

M for Men found at Lynnette Forest.

N for Nuts found at Frilly Freudian Slip (close match with nutmeg).

O for Orange found at Astrid’s Multitude of Musings.

P for Pen found at Olga Godim (pentagram).

Q for Questions found at Teleporting Weena.

R for Rainbow found at J Lenni Dorner.

S for Scissors not found.

T for Tiger found at Story Crossroads.

U for Uniform found at Fiction Can Be Fun.

V for Velvet found at Tracking Down the Family.

W for Whale found at… does Wales count? LOL

X for X-ray found at Life After 50 (Sadje).

Y for Yellow found at Fandango’s.

Z for Zipper found at Weekends in Maine.

~*~

Image source unknown (possibly Sue Vincent).

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Zorin, Max [April A2Z]

Max Zorin

This post wraps up my April A-Z. Every day except Sunday I’ve posted about James Bond 007, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. I hope you enjoyed reading about this topic; I certainly enjoyed writing about it!

Today I introduce Maximillian Zorin, the fictional baddie in A View to a Kill (1985). Christopher Walken played this role, and Roger Moore portrayed James Bond. Max is a high-IQ psychopath, the unfortunate result of Nazi experimentation during WWII, and he was raised in the Soviet Union by an evil doctor. Later, he was trained by the KGB, but he is too wackadoo even for them and ends up plotting badness on his own. Max kills his own men to further his plans and is willing to sacrifice his lover May Day as well, who is played brilliantly by Grace Jones.

Zorin’s plan is to destroy Silicon Valley with a massive earthquake, causing the whole place to flood and wipe out all the computer companies, which would leave him as the microchip king of the world. He has some cockamamie idea of mining underneath the lakes and then using explosives to blast through the San Andreas Fault and the Hayward Fault simultaneously, yada. This is a familiar Bond movie trope, right? Goldfinger wants to wreck all the gold in Fort Knox so his will be more valuable; Mr. Big tries to put all the other heroin dealers out of biz so he can corner the market. Etc.

Anyway, May Day survives and joins up with 007 to thwart Max. She sacrifices her own life to move the explosives out of the strike zone, though there is still a huge blast. Now Max decides he must get Bond in revenge, taking Bond’s love interest captive. This is Stacey Sutton, played by the gorgeous Tanya Roberts, who sadly passed away in January 2021 at the age of 65. Stacey and Bond escape from Zorin, who tries to kill them with an axe, but instead he falls to his death into the San Francisco Bay.

Stacey Sutton


A bit of trivia: Max’s role was first offered to David Bowie, who declined. Rutger Hauer also said no thanks. Finally, Walken agreed to do it.

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia and IMDB.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

You Only Live Twice [April A2Z]

James Bond 007

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy! We are almost at the end…

You Only Live Twice is a 1967 Eon-produced Bond film, the fifth in the series, and starring Sean Connery as 007. It was directed by Lewis Gilbert who also directed The Spy Who Loved Me in 1977 and Moonraker in 1979 (both are Roger Moore Bond films). Roald Dahl wrote the screenplay for YOLT (not as catchy as YOLO, unfortunately, but we are using it here), and it was based on Ian Fleming’s novel, though it’s entirely different. This began a new tradition of basically writing an entirely new story for Bond films, while keeping the name of the books. Dahl said that YOLT was Fleming’s worst book with no plot whatsoever, and he had six weeks to write the screenplay with no prior experience. He was told to create three female characters for Bond to seduce. LOL

Bond is sent to Japan to figure out why American and Soviet spacecraft have disappeared ~ and for the first time, Ernst Stavro Blofeld, SPECTRE’S chief baddie, appears on screen. He’s sequestered away on some remote Asian island plotting bad things and working for an unnamed Asian government, assumed to be China, to provoke war between the other superpowers. This film didn’t do as well as previous Bonds, and during filming Connery said he was retiring, though he was persuaded to return in Diamonds Are Forever (1971) and later in the non-Eon Never Say Never Again (1983).

In any case, I never understood the weirdness of why Bond had to fake his death in Hong Kong and then show up on a Japanese island, not even looking Asian or different in any way from his 007 face, to participate in a lengthy “marriage” ceremony with an Asian girl. It literally made no sense whatsoever and doesn’t fool the baddies either. Oddly, however, this section is straight from the book! The idea is that Bond will pose as an ordinary fisherman hubby who will row over to the baddies’ compound to see what’s up and infiltrate it. There are some cool special effects with the spacecraft and also a volcano where the baddies hid it. The escape from the volcano as Blofeld sets it to destruct is pretty exciting. But we never find out what Blofeld’s motivation is in helping (presumably) China begin a kerfuffle wherein the US and Russia will supposedly destroy each other. Not my favorite 007 flick, but still better than most other action movies.

Bit of trivia: Sean Connery’s wife at the time, Diane Cilento, performed many of the swimming scenes for the Japanese actresses. Also, Queen Elizabeth II attended the premiere in Leicester Square.

Bernard Lee plays M in YOLT, Lois Maxwell portrays Moneypenny, and Desmond Llewelyn is Q. Once again, Nikki van der Zyl is uncredited, this time as the voice of Kissy Suzuki, the local operative assigned to help Bond.

Tune in tomorrow for the final A-Z Bond!

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia and Pinterest.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

X-Tra Bond Trivia [April A2Z]

James Bond 007 logo

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

Today I’m going to share some random Bond facts. Who knows, they may help you in a trivia contest…

Bond’s favorite gambling game is baccarat, which is insanely complicated, similar to an 007 storyline. There are several variations of baccarat, but it’s basically a card game, somewhat like blackjack, except face cards and tens are worth zero. If your cards add up to more than 10, you drop the 10 (6 and 7 is 3, etc.). You’re trying to get an 8 or 9, against another player or the house or both. The vast majority of games are played via fixed rules for both the player and the banker, with the gamblers betting on whichever. The house (banker) has the edge, of course. The fixed-rule baccarat games are called punto banco, but that’s not what 007 plays. Bond plays the variation known as chemin de fer (“railway” in French), where it is player vs player, with one designated banker.

There are variations of both types of games too, and the only reason I became aware of baccarat at all is because Bond plays the game. He plays in Thunderball, Dr. No, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, For Your Eyes Only, and GoldenEye. I haven’t seen them all, but I have seen most of them. I wonder if he’ll play baccarat in 2021’s No Time to Die?

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When the producers needed a new bond in 1967, they found George Lazenby, an Australian man, who was the highest paid model in the world at that time. At age 30, he was the youngest actor to portray Bond (so far). Lazenby’s manager advised him against accepting a multi-movie contract, so George was one and done, though he was offered a contract for seven films. Here he is front and center…

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007 james bond

How many actors have portrayed Bond? You think maybe 5 or 6, right? Nope! It’s 13. (So far.)

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Bond was 38 when he became a double-oh. How did he earn that? He killed two enemies in the field.

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The Bond family motto is “The World Is Not Enough,” and the Bond family home is… Skyfall.

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Bond’s on-screen girlfriend introduced herself in the opening scene of Dr. No as “Trench. Sylvia Trench,” which Bond then parried back with his famous opener. It’s important to know that he didn’t originate it, and it materialized out of flirtatious banter, not as an attempt to sound intimidating. Eunice Gayson played Sylvia in the first two films (Dr. No and From Russia with Love), and the running joke was that Bond would get called away on important biz just as things were getting spicy.

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Q is occasionally called “Major Boothroyd,” as we discussed, but does he have a first name? Yes, it’s Algernon! Bond mentions it in Never Say Never Again.

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Sales of the book From Russia with Love exploded in 1961 after President JFK said it was one of his favorite novels. The next Bond film was made from the book, and it was the last movie JFK ever saw ~ one day before his trip to Texas in 1963.

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pierce brosnan bond tux martini

While under contract to play James Bond, Pierce Brosnan was not allowed to wear a tux in any non-Bond movie.

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Barbara Broccoli (daughter of Albert) has been producing the Eon Bond films since 1995.

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To date, the 22 official Bond films have earned $12B. But the first, Dr. No, went $100K over budget and the producers considered bailing because they weren’t sure it would turn a profit.

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Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond! Only two left…

~*~

Information and images from TalkFilmSociety, Wikipedia, 007james.com, UselessDaily, and CultBox.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Whoops! [April A2Z]

Timothy Dalton

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

Whoops, I forgot to include Timothy Dalton in my alphabetical list! He looks a bit annoyed about that… don’t you think? Sorry, Mr. Dalton. Yummy dimple, btw. In my defense, I haven’t seen the Dalton-Bond movies, though I’m sure they are enjoyable. Timothy Leonard Dalton Leggett was born in Wales in 1946. He’s the fourth actor to play 007 in the Eon films, starring in The Living Daylights (1987) and License to Kill (1989). Of course, he’s been in other movies also, but like who cares?

Apparently, Dalton was first approached to play Bond when he was 25, but he thought he was too young and couldn’t do the role justice after Sean Connery’s excellent portrayal. Ten years later, he was approached again, but he didn’t like the direction the films were taking… wtf? No wonder I haven’t paid attention to this guy. Mr. Fusspot, amirite? Finally, in 1986, he agreed to take on the Bond role. WELL, LAH DI DAH! Actually, since one of the last 007 flicks at that time was Octopussy (1983) I kinda understand Dalton’s hesitation…

Anyway, Dalton’s 1987 Bond film was hugely successful, doing better at the box office than Moore’s final two, and even beating his competition ~ Lethal Weapon and Die Hard. However, License to Kill did not do that well. To be fair, it had to compete with an Indiana Jones and a Batman, plus the British rated the film for 15+ years of age only, which cut into profits. In the future, Bond films would be released in the fall/winter, not the summer, to avoid another flop. We like our 007 served cold!

Dalton had a contract for three Bond movies, but the third got tangled up in legal issues and was delayed. By the time it got sorted out, Dalton was shooting a series and declined to renegotiate the contract. Pierce Brosnan was brought in at that point for GoldenEye (1995). I’m interested in checking out the Dalton Bond at some point, since Wikipedia says he played him darker and more serious, closer to Fleming’s vision. I’m open to all interpretations of Bond and see no need to decide which is the best one. But if you do, that’s cool. Thanks for reading along.

Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond!

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia and Pinterest.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Vesper Lynd [April A2Z]

vesper lynd

Vesper Lynd is a fictional character created by Ian Fleming in his novel Casino Royale (1953). She was portrayed by Ursula Andress in the 1967 film version of the novel, which is mostly a parody and doesn’t follow the book, and by Eva Green (pictured) in 2006’s Casino Royale, which starred Daniel Craig for the first time as Bond. Fleming created a cocktail recipe named after her, and the phrase “shaken, not stirred” comes from that as well. In the 2006 movie, Vesper works at MI6 headquarters and is assigned to help Bond bankrupt SMERSH baddie Le Chiffre, who has been staked by Mr. White. After 007 takes all Le Chiffre’s money in a game of baccarat, his henchmen kidnap Vesper. When Bond goes to rescue her, they grab him too. Vesper saves 007’s life when he gets poisoned. Naturally, they both are fine, though Bond is injured, and Vesper visits him daily as he recovers. They fall in love and become lovers when he regains his health.

However! Vesper is a double agent working for Russia. Her former lover had revealed to SMERSH (under torture) this information about her. After Le Chiffre’s death (via Mr. White, due to Le Chiffre losing his stake), Vesper hopes she can make a fresh start with Bond in Venice, even though she takes the money Bond won to give to her peeps, but then she sees a SMERSH baddie following them and knows her cover is blown. In an attempt to save 007’s life, she commits suicide. Upon discovering that Vesper was a spy for the other side, Bond appears to immediately dismiss any emotional attachment toward her and proceed with his next mission. But secretly he still has feelings for her, as we see in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) when he visits her grave annually ~ no matter that OHMSS took place decades before Casino Royale. We do not concern ourselves with such trivial details. Bond also mentions her in Goldfinger (1964). Gah, how do these dates make any sense???

Quantum of Solace supposedly makes sense of all this lover, former lover, embezzling stuff, but I haven’t seen it yet! In 2015’s Spectre, Bond finds a video of Vesper’s interrogation by Blofeld, who taunts 007 by saying he caused her death to hurt Bond. So even after her death, the Vesper Lynd character plays a significant role in future (and former) 007 films. Just don’t get hung up on the dates (I say to self).

Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond!

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Ursula Andress [April A2Z]

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

Today the spotlight is on Ursula Andress, the first “Bond girl,” debuting in 1961’s Dr. No as Honey Rider. She’s an independent woman, making a living selling seashells after suffering an abusive past, and encounters Bond about halfway through the film. She helps Bond escape from baddies, saves herself and him too, rowing Bond to safety while he’s unconscious. Not exactly the usual image we have of 007 overpowering everyone himself and single-handedly saving the beautiful girl, right?

Ursula was born in Switzerland in 1936, and Dr. No was not her first movie ~ she was acting in Italian films during the 1950s. In 1955, she came to Hollywood to try her luck. Though Paramount signed her, she didn’t get any roles due to her inability to learn English, but she did end up marrying John Derek in 1957. Somehow (mystery), she was cast as Honey for the Bond flick and made history ~ she credits the white bikini, which was sold at auction in 2001 for around $40K. She even won a Golden Globe for new star of the year, though her lines were dubbed by Nikki van der Zyl (who dubbed Sylvia’s lines too, as well as many other female characters in later Bond films). Following her success as Honey, Ursula went on to star in other films as well as pose for Playboy.

In 1981, Ursula played Aphrodite in Clash of the Titans, where she met Harry Hamlin, the leading man. They ended up in a romance and had a son, Dimitri, her only child. Ursula now lives in Europe.

Tune in Monday for more A-Z Bond!

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Information and images from Wikipedia and the Sydney Morning Herald.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Thunderball [April A2Z]

James Bond playing cards casino thunderball

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

When adjusted for ticket price inflation, Thunderball (1965) is the most financially successful Bond film. It was the fourth in the 007 franchise, and the Eon producers (Broccoli/Saltzman) had to overcome a legal dispute to release it. Ian Fleming had been sued by the cowriters of another screenplay, as they claimed that Thunderball copied that script. Finally, the lawsuit settled and the film was allowed to be made and released. One of the writers/producers, Kevin McClory, retained some rights, which allowed him to make the non-Eon, Taliafilm Never Say Never Again in 1983 in connection with Warner Bros, which essentially was a remake of Thunderball.

This film is notable for Sean Connery as Bond making use of a jet-pack gadget to escape from some baddies shooting at him. The actual “flight” was done by a stunt double with 007’s face appearing at the beginning and end. Naturally, a beautiful girl is waiting at Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 to unhook him from the pack and help him finish his getaway.

There’s a convoluted plot involving SPECTRE baddies changing their faces and voices to impersonate peeps, with the goal being to steal a couple British nukes, which Emilio Largo, the head of SPECTRE (his first name is changed to Maximillian in NSNA), will then attempt to ransom for $100M of diamonds. We see all this recreated in NSNA but with fancier special effects and retinal scans. As word of the plan gets out, 007 is sent to set things to rights in the Bahamas where it’s all going down. There, Bond meets Domino, Largo’s mistress [look at me, so non-PC!], who of course falls for Bond. There’s a tense poker game with Bond beating Largo (see first image).

thunderball

Another notable moment in this film is when Largo throws one of his henchmen to the sharks because he failed to kill bond. The stuntman, Bill Cummings, was required to leap onto a live shark, and he received hazard pay for doing so. Another stuntman, John Stears, almost died when he was battling a “dead” shark except it wasn’t quite, and there was suddenly a shark feeding frenzy, with the stuntman getting pulled out of the water at the last second. The footage was kept in the film and Stears won an Oscar for it (in 1978 he won a second one for Star Wars). But those aren’t even the most exciting shark moments, nope. For the scene in which Bond himself was trapped in the shark pool, he demanded a Plexiglass barrier. This was agreed to and constructed… except they didn’t have enough Plexiglass and a shark found its way into the gap. Luckily for us (and him), Sean escaped and went on to make You Only Live Twice (apt title!).

There’s so much info about this film, the Bond girls’ casting, the theme song, the explosions, etc., that my post would be humongous if I included all the info. I will throw this morsel to you: Bond’s “breathing apparatus” fooled the British Royal Engineers, one of whom called up the draftsman and asked how it worked and how long you could breathe underwater with it. He was annoyed to find out it didn’t work at all in reality. Those tricky filmmakers! Whatever will they think of next?

Oh, you can actually visit the “Thunderball Grotto” in the Bahamas. Look how beautiful it is!

Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond!

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia, IMDB, MentalFloss, and Bahamar.com.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Sean Connery [April A2Z]

sean connery

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

Today we will be talking about Sir Sean Connery. He was born Thomas Sean Connery in Scotland in 1930, same year as my dad. Sean passed away last October (2020). RIP. He played Bond in six Eon-produced 007 films and once in another non-official 007 film, Never Say Never Again (1983).

Sean’s first job at age 14 was a milkman, and he joined the Royal Navy at 16. He was discharged three years later for health reasons (stomach ulcer). After that, Sean had a variety of jobs, including coffin polisher, and spent a lot of time bodybuilding. In 1953, he placed third in the Mr. Universe competition. He was offered a football contract (do they mean soccer?), but turned it down and decided to become an actor. Strangely, he was not an overnight success and toiled away for years, doing janitorial work and making little money, before finally getting offered a few bit parts. He had a role in Action of the Tiger, which was directed by Terence Young, the director of the first three Bond films. Sean did four more films before he was chosen by Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman to star in Dr. No (1962).

From Russia with Love

After that, Connery starred as Bond in From Russia with Love (1963), Goldfinger (1964), Thunderball (1965), and You Only Live Twice (1967). At this point, Sean felt he was becoming typecast and left the role. George Lazenby was then brought in for On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, but refused to do more. The producers were desperate for someone to portray Bond in Diamonds Are Forever (1971), so they offered Sean a huge amount of money to return for another film. He received a base of $1.25M, which he donated to charity, and 12.5% of the profits. Sean’s take, estimated at about $4.5 million, made him the highest paid actor of the time. Roger Moore then became the next Bond. Sean went on to roles in many other films, including one of my favorites, The Hunt for Red October (1990).

In 1983, Connery played Bond in Never Say Never Again, which was a remake of Ian Fleming’s novel Thunderball. As noted above, Eon already made a movie from that book in 1965. But this 80’s flick was not an Eon production; it was produced by Jack Schwartzman’s Taliafilm in association with Kevin McClory. Kevn was one of the original writers of the 1965 version. There was a protracted legal battle over rights from the 1960’s onward yada. In any case, this marked the seventh and final time Sean Connery played 007. The title is a humorous nod to Sean’s 1971 statement that he would “never” play Bond again. The storyline is about an aging Bond, brought back to investigate the theft of a couple nukes by SPECTRE.

Sean Connery

Sean was voted People Magazine’s Sexist Man Alive in 1989, when he was 69. In 2006, he received the American Film Institute’s Life Achievement Award. He also won an Academy Award, two BAFTA Awards, and three Golden Globes. And he was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2000. Connery was married twice and had one son, Jason. He died in his sleep at age 90, of pneumonia and heart failure, in the Bahamas.


Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond!

~*~

Information and images from Wikipedia, Looper, 007James, and People.

©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.

Roger Moore [April A2Z]

Roger Moore 007 James Bond

Welcome to my April A-Z! This month I will be posting about James Bond 007 every day except Sunday, mostly focusing on the movies, not the books. Enjoy!

Sir Roger George Moore was born in 1927 and died in 2017. I was a fan of his from way back, when he played The Saint on black and white TV (1962-1969). I had a crush before I knew what one was and blame Moore for my predilection for older, suave men. Moore brought that classiness to his Bond role, along with a scoop of humor. To date, Moore has actually played 007 the most times in Eon-produced Bond films (1973-1985), seven to Sean Connery’s six. If we count Never Say Never Again (1983, produced by Taliafilm in association with Kevin McClory), then they are tied at seven.

Moore began his show biz career at an animation studio, but was fired after making an error. Next, through his policeman father, young Roger met a director in 1945 and was hired as an extra. He promptly became a hit with women and had a female fan-following (“stans,” as we call them now). He then attended the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where Lois Maxwell was studying also. Who is she? The future Miss Moneypenny, of course! At age 18, Moore was conscripted, but luckily WWII had already ended. He became a captain in West Germany, where he organized entertainment for the armed forces.

Roger Moore’s first TV appearance was in 1949 in “The Governess.” Next, he had a variety of roles until 1954 when he was signed to a seven-year contract at MGM. However, due to the colossal flop of a 1956 film in which he had a more significant role alongside Lana Turner, he was released from the contract. Poor Roger! He managed to achieve his first success in a 1958-1959 series “Ivanhoe” ~ which coincidentally also included Robert Brown in the cast. Who is he? Brown played M in several Bond films in the 1980s! Moore continued with television, signing a long-term contract with Warner Brothers in 1959. He had the lead in “The Alaskans” as well as a part in the 1960s show “Maverick,” playing a cousin to James Garner’s character. Fun fact: Sean Connery tested for that cousin part and turned it down.

Roger Moore

Moore began piling up loads of credits for TV and movies during the 1960s, including his famous role in “The Saint” as Simon Templar. Now, he was an international star, playing the debonair, bantering gentleman with a raised eyebrow. This was his signature expression, conveying coolness, control, and knowledge of your secrets. (Moore directed nine episodes of “The Saint.”) In 1970, he starred in a challenging role in The Man Who Haunted Himself, which I need to see, since I’m reading that it may have been his best role. In 1971, Moore became the highest-paid TV actor in the world, collecting a million pounds sterling for a single series, “The Persuaders.” He starred alongside Tony Curtis in that role.

Roger Moore’s first appearance as James Bond took place in the 1964 comedy series “Mainly Millicent.” He stated that he had not been considered for 007 in the first Bond film Dr. No, and only after Sean Connery declared in 1966 that he was done with 007 did Moore become a contender. Albert Broccoli signed him in 1972, and Moore played James Bond for the first time on the big screen in one of my favorite 007 films ~ Live and Let Die (1973). He had to cut his hair and lose weight for the part, which he said he resented. Moore continued to play Bond in six more films: The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), The Spy Who Loved Me (a massive success in 1977), Moonraker (1979), For Your Eyes Only (1979), Octopussy (1983), and finally A View to a Kill (1985). Between these movies, Moore was busy with roles in other major films. Dude was no slouch!

Roger Moore

Moore retired from Bond in 1985, at age 58. After 12 years in the role, he changed our perception of James Bond from Connery’s serious character into a more lighthearted one. With his trademark raised eyebrow and penchant for quips and flirtation, Moore brought a great deal of humor and fun to the 007 role. Some people vastly prefer the Connery Bond, but I enjoy both equally ~ and I also love Brosnan and Craig as Bond. Moore changed the role partly due to the atmosphere of the 1970s and also because, as he said, “I’m not that cold-blooded killer type.” He played it for laughs.

Post-Bond, Moore continued acting in movies, including ones that parodied the 007 role. His last screen appearance was in 2017, the year of his death. Over his lifetime, Moore received many awards and honors, including being named a Goodwill Ambassador in 1991 and chosen as one of GQ’s 50 best-dressed British men in 2015. Roger was married four times: first at age 18 to an ice skater 6 years his senior, later to a singer 12 years his senior, whom he left for the Italian actress Luisa Mattoli, who became his third wife (with whom he had three children, all now in “the biz”), and finally to Kristina Tholstrup in 2000. I have summarized his love life here ~ it was complicated and messy, as was his health. Roger suffered from many ailments since childhood on, finally succumbing to liver cancer at age 89 in Switzerland.

Moore was politically conservative, though he didn’t want to be seen as a political figure or involve himself much in politics. He did, however, state in 2011 that any hardline conservative who spoke out against a conservative leader (in Britain) should be viewed as a traitor. Roger supported the Queen and in particular favored keeping British currency separate from the EU’s currency, due to his desire to have the Queen continue to appear on British coins, stamps, etc. In keeping with these views, Moore also stated that he was opposed to James Bond’s character becoming anything other than a straight, white man. He favored unions though, for himself and others, supporting the Cadbury workers’ protest against their factory’s closure. Moore resented paying the high taxes in Britain, however much he adored the monarchy, and in 1978 he became a resident of Switzerland and later Monaco. Regardless, Moore was appointed Commander of the British Empire in 1999 and knighted in by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003 for charitable services. Roger Moore has a star on Hollywood Boulevard along with many other honors from various countries.

There’s a lot more to Moore and this is a longer post than I usually write ~ I’m sure I’ve lost most of my readers by now. I simply find Moore interesting, is all, and I am enjoying learning about him. Most of what I’ve written here I did not know before researching this post. I could go on, and on and on, but I will stop here.

Tune in tomorrow for more A-Z Bond!

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Information and images from Wikipedia, jbsuits.com, and 007.com.

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