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Which actor played James Bond?

Job By Alexis LeBrun April 1, 2022

This year we celebrate the sixtieth anniversary of 007’s adventures on the big screen. Over six decades, the world’s youngest secret agent has been played by six actors, representing many visions of the character created by Ian Fleming. While we wait to find out the answer to the killer question – who will replace Daniel Craig? – A look back at the various incarnations of James Bond in cinema.

Sean Connery, the reference

For many fans, the Scottish actor is not the best version of James Bond, he is James Bond. And for good reason: putting on the first 007 tuxedo in James Bond’s 007 in Dr. NO (Terence Young, 1962), Sean Connery is the man who made the character legendary on the big screen, a global and generational pop culture icon that none of his successors can surpass. The essence of Sean Connery’s James Bond was first and foremost portrayed on screen as a symbol of triumphant virtue in the early 1960s, a flamboyant libido that brought sweat from the pores of his hairy torso.

This self-confident masculinity is also expressed in the violence committed by 007 Sean, who kills easily in cold blood, and leaves a mountain of corpses in his wake. This includes countless female raids who die at his expense without giving him much trouble. Charismatic hero, with an element of madness and charm, at the same time cold and regal, Sean Connery’s James Bond is completely anachronistic today, and because of this he is paradoxically eternal.

Shooting star George Lazenby

When Sean Connery first decided to don the 007 suit in You Only Live Twice (Lewis Gilbert, 1967), EON Productions, Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltman’s box office was in trouble. Scotsman Apollo turned James Bond into a cash machine at the box office, and now we need to find a successor who will never forget him. Among the many suitors, they choose a completely unknown Australian who has never played a minor role in cinema. This new actor is George Lazenby. The former model, the latter has his image not only for him.

He’s a true athlete who distributes his stuff in a way that couldn’t be more realistic. As a result, the James Bond he embodies is convincing in action scenes, but when it comes to conveying emotions, things become a little more complicated. If his performance as an actor is still widely admired today, George Lazenby can at least have the satisfaction of being a cult Bond: not only him, but also one of the greatest. Appreciated by fans. Warmly received upon his release, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (Peter Hunt, 1969) is indeed regarded today as one of the best episodes of the sagas, particularly because of its dark, unforgettably tragic conclusion.

Prankster Roger Moore

After Sean Connery’s brief comeback in Diamonds Forever (Guy Hamilton, 1971), James Bond has to reinvent himself. Times have changed: The countercultural activities of the late 1960s threaten the character of Agent 007, played by the Scottish actor. You must renew yourself and not become obsolete (already!) and mislead the new generation, George Lazenby advised the Folio to reject the Golden Bridge offer to continue embodying the secret agent as predicted by George Lazenby’s visionary agent. … Roger Moore, who holds the record for the most James Bond appearances in films, appeared seven times between 1973 and 1985.

More than any other, the actor famous for his frustrations portrays the era: Roger Moore 007 is the harbinger of the sexual revolution, who delights in putting girls half his age into bed. the world. Deceptively, this Bond on his body – already aged in the 1980s – is far less than his legendary sense of goodwill among Valve and fans. Roger Moore’s era is sophomoric, self-mocking and famously excessive: the actor pretends to be a clown or a monkey and doesn’t seem to take his character’s absurd mission seriously. The scene in MOONRAKER (Lewis Gilbert, 1979) with laser guns. A very subtle style that inevitably divides its fans: we love it or we hate it.

Preceded by Timothy Dalton

As we know, the final years of Roger Moore’s reign were not to everyone’s taste. The actor played the secret agent until he was 58 years old and, let’s put it mildly, he showed it on the screen. After these crazy few years where the franchise had stripped back all the limits of talent, it was important to get back to something serious and credible. Timothy Dalton was chosen this way: when the actor dons James’s costume for the first time, the idea is to break away from the old Playboy stereotype and present a darker and more realistic Bond.

Does this remind you of anyone? Exactly: Twenty years before the Daniel Craig era, Saga producers first tried to make 007 more human. Timothy Dalton’s James Bond isn’t one to make jokes (he prefers good bloody revenge), and his raids are average for the character. In the space of two films, the actor breaks with the years of Roger Moore, and when he performs his own performances, he includes a more powerful agent. This explosion of violence and even a hit in a franchise that is used to purging the family audience has gone awry. This choice was good, but it simply intervened too early: it was necessary to wait until 2006 to confirm the success of Daniel Craig in this direction.

Pierce Brosnan, Integration

Today, the Irish actor suffers from comparisons with his successor. But Stormy Daniel Craig can’t make us forget that in the second half of the 1990s, Pierce Brosnan was a fairly pure chemical version of James Bond. In simple terms, he summed up all his predecessors: he’s not like Timothy Dalton. He is afraid to get his hands dirty, but the raw sexuality, natural beauty and charm also characterize Sean Connery, his phlegm and mockery have nothing to envy to Roger Moore. And despite his somewhat arrogant and snobbish side, we already get his share of mischief that characterizes Daniel Craig’s Bond.

Pierce Brosnan’s James Bond is thus commonplace in the positive sense of the word, but we often forget that it ushered in the modernist turn championed by Daniel Craig. Forced conversion: The Irishman By the time he took over the role in the mid-1990s, the Cold War had ended and James Bond had been off the radar since 1989 and the failure of the Timothy Dalton experiment. We need to pick up the license again and adapt the hero to a new geopolitical context. The four films of Pierce Brosnan’s era are certainly characterized by the blockbuster pyrotechnics of the time, but unless one retains a special sympathy for The Great Goldeneye (Martin Campbell, 1995) and its successors, the women of James Bond’s relationship also begin to evolve, more or less subtly, in the saga’s most insane history. Not to mention there are gadgets that are.

Revolutionary Daniel Craig

We tend to forget, but when he took over the role of James Bond in 2005, Daniel Craig was the victim of an online smear and boycott campaign that foreshadowed the practice that is becoming commonplace today. Too pale and too built for the tastes of even the most ardent 007 fans, Daniel Craig contrasts with Pierce Brosnan’s almost brooding sophistication. Everyone knows the rest: Since first appearing in Bond’s skin in 2006, Craig has unanimously established himself as a classic, and Martin Campbell’s Casino Royale is one of the franchise’s greatest classics. Violent, tormented, passionate, vulnerable, in love, Daniel Craig’s James Bond gives the agent a much-needed boost and cracks a number of franchise codes: out of the scary gadgets and martini shakers, 007 is forced to throw everything away. In the new Superman action movies and series, Jason Bourne and Jack Bauer face the onslaught.

At a time when Bond is feared to be aging due to the ups and downs of his time, Daniel Craig rescues the character by reassessing his challenge after fifty years of life. And the people love it. In 2012, the miraculous SKYFALL by Sam Mendes hits all the licensing records and definitely confirms the dramatic turn of the series, which has become important again. Ten years later, Daniel Craig has left the number 007 so high that it has long been taboo to place him above Sean Connery in the Bond hierarchy. A crime of lèse-majeste? Definitely not. We wish the successor the best of luck.

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