Archive for Diamonds Are Forever

I didn’t know that!

Posted in James Bond with tags , , on January 20, 2008 by Deborah Lipp

I was researching some trivia and learned that Valerie Perrine was one of Shady Tree’s Acorns in Diamonds Are Forever.

It’s not like this is a mystery that I am the first to discover, it’s on IMDb and everywhere else. But I’d never realized it before and it’s a nice bit of trivia. It was Perrine’s first film role, but a year later, she co-starred in Slaughterhouse Five directed by George Roy Hill, and by 1974 she was nominated for an Oscar for Lenny.

Perrine as Miss Tessmacher

Happy Birthday Mr. Kidd

Posted in Birthdays with tags , , on January 19, 2008 by Deborah Lipp

Jazz bassist Putter Smith, best known to Bond fans as Diamonds Are Forever’s Mr. Kidd, was born on this day in 1941.

Mr. Kidd

My top six Bond films

Posted in Best & Worst, Casino Royale with tags , , , , , , on September 27, 2007 by Deborah Lipp

At first, I was going to post the whole list, but then I thought, this might generate a lot of discussion, and a few at a time seems better.

I’m doing a top six because Casino Royale upset the top five I had settled on and gotten happy with, and I sort of agonized over that.

Anyway, here it is:

1. From Russia with Love
2. GoldenEye
3. The Spy Who Loved Me
4. Casino Royale (2006)
5. The Living Daylights
6. Diamonds Are Forever

I am pleased with a list of excellent films that represents the full range of actors and eras and sensibilities of the James Bond franchise. Five of the six actors, and two very different faces of Sean Connery. Hardcore spying is dominant in all of these movies, except Diamonds Are Forever, but even that film has a powerful thread of true espionage and horror mixed in with the humor. (I will defend DAF unto the death. Possibly it needs its own thread; we’ll see.)

Could Blofeld Ever Return?

Posted in Ian Fleming, James Bond with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 12, 2007 by Deborah Lipp

In comments, Zippertuck asks:

I am a bit confused as to exactly when CR takes place and wondering, even though he was shoved down a smokestack in FYEO, if Blofeld could ever return for an more appropriate death? Never ever liked how Bond never truly got to avenge the death of his wife in true Bondian fashion as happened in the novel YOLT.

Great question. I’m going to deal with CR and chronology in a future post. For now, let’s talk about Blofeld.

In order to understand what happened to Blofeld in the films, you need a little bit of familiarity with the lawsuit over Thunderball. The short version is that Kevin McClory, Jack Whittingham, and Ian Fleming collaborated on a television screenplay, but it never went anywhere. Sometime later, Fleming used the abandoned screenplay as the basis for the novel Thunderball. McClory and Whittingham sued. As a result, McClory established ownership of the right to make movies out of Thunderball (which he exercised when he made Never Say Never Again; a remake of TB). (Whittingham signed over his rights to McClory.)

The settlement also gave McClory the rights to unique elements of the novel, including the character of Blofeld. When McClory couldn’t finance filming TB on his own, he made a deal with Eon to co-produce TB, and that deal prevented him from remaking the movie for twelve years. During those twelve years, Eon continued to use Blofeld and SPECTRE. Blofeld was slated to be the villain for TSWLM, which fell outside those years, and that was changed to Stromberg for legal reasons. That was the end of Blofeld in the Bond films.

When John Glenn directed his first Bond film, FYEO, he wanted to resolve the issue of Bond’s revenge upon Blofeld. Thus, the “Man in Wheelchair” character was introduced into the teaser, allowing Bond to kill an unnamed enemy clearly designed to be Blofeld. (Glenn’s memoir, For My Eyes Only, explains that Blofeld was in a wheelchair because he had been injured in OHMSS. I guess he forgot that Blofeld walked just fine in DAF. Maybe he doesn’t see the ones he doesn’t work on.)

Kevin McClory died last year. It is unclear where the rights now reside, but it seems unlikely that SPECTRE or Blofeld will ever return.