Today marks the 50th anniversary of the release by United Artists of the 1st James Bond movie to hit the silver screen. That movie was Dr. No & was based on the book by Ian Fleming of the same name.
Most people forget that this wasn't the 1st time Bond made an appearance. In 1954 CBS did a teleplay for its series Climax! based on Casino Royale. It was based on the section of the novel of the same name that took place at the casino. They made Bond an American, "Card Sense Jimmy Bond". They made Felix Leiter into British agent Clarence Leiter. It didn't go over too well & it was lost for several decades. Fortunately it has since been found & released on video. While not as good as the later movies, it is better than it was given credit for at the time. Casino Royale came out in print in 1953.
By 1962, Harry Saltzman & Albert "Cubby" Broccoli had aquired the rights to film Bond & began with Dr. No. Since then Eon Productions (the company they formed) have released 22 films. The 23rd, Skyfall, is due out next month. In addition they have released 2 other films, 1 based on another Ian Fleming book.
2 other official Bonds have been released by other producers. In 1967 the 1st movie version of Casino Royale was released. Ian Fleming had sold the movie rights to the book in 1955. In 1983 a remake of Thunderball entitled Never Say Never Again was released by Taliafilm (yes, named for Talia Shire of Godfather fame). When the novel, Thunderball, came out, there was a lawsuit because the novel was based on a potential late 50s film script written by Kevin McClory & Jack Whittingham. As a result, McClory got the film rights. He made an agreement with Eon Productions to film it in 1965, with the right for him to remake it after a certain period of time.
Also, in 1967, an Italian spoof of James Bond starring Neil Connory (Sean's younger brother was released by United Artists. The movie has been variously called OK Connery, Operation Kid Brother
in the United States, Operation Double 007
& Secret Agent 00
. In addition to Connery, it featured several actors from the Bond movies. It later got the Mystery Science Theater 3000
In addition Daniel Craig did a short film playing Bond for the openning of the 2012 Olympics.
So, to celebrate 50 years of Bond on screen, I want to present a little trivia quiz. (The answers are posted below, to see them you need to hilite the area. No peeking until you have actually answered them & sent them to me in a comment.)
1: Who was the 1st actor to play James Bond in the 54 version of Casino Royale?
2. Who was the 2nd actor & 1st on the big screen to play Bond?
3. I mentioned above that 1 of Ian Flemings other books was made into a movie. Which was it?
a) Thrilling Cities
b) The Diamond Smugglers
4. For some of his missions, Bond has had to pretend he was married. However, there was 1 time he got married for real. What was the name of the woman Bond actually married?
a) Kissy Suzuki
b) Contessa Teresa "Tracy" di Vicenzo
c) Anya Amasova
Bonus credit - name the movie
5. What is the real name of Q, the head of Q (quartermaster) Branch?
6. Who was the 1st actor to play Q on screen?
7. What is the real name of the head of MI6, M (the original, not the current played by Dame Judi Dench)?
8. CIA agent Felix Leiter is James Bond's best friend. More of this has been made in the novels than the films (Licence to Kill excepted). What state is Leiter from?
b) North Dakota
9. What does SPECTRE stand for?
10. What are the names of Bond's parents?
11. Which of the following has NOT played James Bond in a film?
a) Woody Allen
b) David Niven
c) Rowan Atkinson
d) Peter Sellers
12. George Lazenby only played James Bond in film once, On Her Majesty's Secret Service. However he did play Bond 1 other time, sort of, on TV. What was the name of the 1983 TV movie?
13. Match up the Bond Actor to his nationality
a. Pierce Brosnan
b. Sean Connery
c. Timothy Dalton
d. George Lazenby
14. In the books Bond has a housekeeper (never seen in the movies), what is her name?
15. Bond is most associated with the Walther PPK 7.65mm. What was the gun he originally used?
A: 1. Barry Nelson
2: Bob Simmons in the opening gunbarrel sequence. After the 1st 3 movies, the current actor took over.
3. b - it has since been adapted into a stage musical as well.
4. b in On Her Majesty's Secret Service
5. Major Boothroyd,
6. Peter Burton in Dr. No
7. Vice Admiral Sir Miles Messervy KCMG
9. SPecial Executive for Counter-intelligence, Terrorism, Revenge, and Extortion
10. Scottish father, Andrew Bond, of Glencoe, & a Swiss mother, Monique Delacroix, of the Canton de Vaud
11. c Attkinson was in Never Say Never Again as Nigel Small-Fawcett The other 3 all played versions of Bond in the 1967 version of Casino Royale
12. The Return of the Man from U.N.C.L.E.: The Fifteen Years Later Affair. He was billed as JB & his Aston Martin DB5 has the initials JB on the plate
13. a - y, b - y, c - z, d - w
15. .25 ACP Beretta