After years of watching the James Bond movie series, fans of the suave secret agent have learnt a few good things about him.
We all know that he likes his Martini shaken, not stirred, his favorite exotic car is an Aston Martin and his original preferred choice of weapon was the Beretta 418. But there are some facts and trivia about 007 that fans don’t know…
We’ve gathered up 26 fun and interesting James Bond facts that all fans of the 007 franchise should know…
1. James Bond was Originally a Novel
You may consider the Bond saga as one of the most popular movie franchises of all time, but in fact, these iconic films are based on books. The character was created by journalist and author Ian Fleming, with his first novel, Casino Royale being released in 1953.
2. Sean Connery Wore a Toupee
Sean Connery started balding at the age of 21 which meant he had to wear a toupee when playing the role of Bond. After performing stunts and maneuvers, we’re surprised it didn’t fly off! In fact, while filming Diamonds Are Forever, actor Joe Robinson accidentally pulled it off during a fight scene. Now that would have hurt Bond’s ego!
3. Bond Has a History
Ever thought deeper about Bond’s past? Who are his parents and when was he born? According to an obituary Ian Fleming wrote for You Only Live Twice, the international Man of Mystery has an interesting history.
Bond’s parents go by the names of Andrew Bond, a Scottish man who owned a weapons company and Monique Delacroix, a Swiss woman. They both died when Bond was 11 years-old after a mountain climbing accident. He ended up living with his aunt and studied in Edinburgh before getting recruited by the Royal Navy.
4. Bond Has an Age
Unfortunately, Bond isn’t invincible. How old is the famous fictional spy? In Casino Royale, Bond’s birthday is given as April 13th 1968, making him (or at least Daniel Craig’s version) 47 years-old. That also happens to be the same day that the novel, Casino Royale was released and the same year Daniel Craig was born.
We can assume that Bond must be in his 50s, now though.
5. M’s House in Skyfall Belonged to a Great Composer
M’s house in Skyfall isn’t just a regular old filming set. In fact, it is the former home of John Barry – the Bond composer. Well, that was handy for the movie creators.
6. Bond has Been Shot Over 4000 Times
Here’s some James Bond trivia that might prove he is indeed invincible! According to NME, as of 2012, Bond has been shot a total of 4,662 times. Obviously since then, the number has probably risen following the release of Skyfall and Spectre.
7. Thunderball is the Most Successful Bond Movie
According to Forbes, Thunderball is the most successful James Bond movie – in terms of domestic revenue after inflation. As of 2020, it has garnered $590 million. Following that is Goldfinger with $514.7 million and then Skyfall with $358.3 million.
In terms of global revenue (without inflation) however, Skyfall is ranked as the biggest money-making Bond film and falls at 28th place in the list of most successful movies in the world.
8. The Theme Tune Wasn’t Intended for Bond
You wouldn’t be humming the same Bond theme tune today if it weren’t for this significant event. The signature Bond theme was originally intended for a musical theater adaption of the V.S Naipaul novel, A House for Mr. Biswas. Thankfully, it didn’t make it into the play, so the song was recomposed and handed to the James Bond franchise.
9. Bond’s Kill Count is Astonishing
With the use of his Walther PPK or the many gadgets that Q hands to him, 007 has killed hundreds of enemies. In 24 movies, James Bond has killed 597 people, according to Screen Rant. Of course, with No Time To Die coming out soon, the number of on-screen kills is bound to grow.
10. The Color Gold is Special to Bond
You’ve probably realized by now that “gold” seems to follow Bond everywhere. It appears in the titles of three Bond movies and in Goldfinger, Jill Masterson dies of skin suffocation after being painted in it.
Well, Bond’s story actually began on a gold-plated typewriter. Ian Fleming wrote the Bond novels on a gold-plated Royal typewriter which later sold at an auction for £50,000.
Who is your favorite 007? Check out our ranking of James Bond actors and let us know if you agree!
11. President John F. Kennedy Was a Huge Fan
A bunch of famous faces are fans of the dashing agent. But did you know one of them was this iconic president? President John F. Kennedy viewed an early showing of From Russia with Love at the White House on November 21st, 1963. It was the last film he ever saw before being killed the next day in Dallas.
12. An Actress Almost Died to be a Bond Girl
Talk about desperate times! Mie Hama, the actress who played Kissy Suzuki in You Only Live Twice threatened to jump from a window at the Dorchester Hotel after being told that her English wasn’t good enough for the role. Just as they were about to cast someone else, the producers decided to let Mie continue filming.
We guess they didn’t want a suicide case on their hands…
13. GoldenEye Isn’t Just a Movie Title
During World War II, Ian Fleming decided to name his plot in Jamaica, GoldenEye. It was on this plot of land where he created the legend that is James Bond and 14 of the novels. What’s even more interesting is, he later sold this estate to Bob Marley.
14. Maud Adams is the Only Actress to Appear as Two Bond Girls
Maud Adams was lucky enough to be cast in three James Bond movies. She first starred as Scaramanga’s girlfriend, Andrea Anders in The Man With the Golden Gun and later was cast as a rich smuggler in Octopussy. She also happened to be an extra in A View to Kill, but you would have to have been eagle-eyed to notice that.
15. Sean Connery’s Pay Check was a World Record
Although it was good news when Sean Connery reprised his Bond role in Diamonds are Forever, at the same time, it seemed odd. Why would he leave and come back? Money, of course!
Apparently, Sean’s paycheck for the movie was a whopping $1.25 million in which he later donated to his charity, the Scottish International Education Trust. That might not seem a lot now, but back then it was enough to deserve a place in the Guinness World Records.
16. Daniel Craig Can Take Any Aston Martin
Actors who are lucky enough to be cast as James Bond also get to live his lavish lifestyle. That includes traveling the world, wearing the smartest clothes and driving the nicest cars. Apparently, Daniel Craig has the privilege of taking any Aston Martin model from the factory to drive for the rest of his life!
17. Roald Dahl Wrote One of the Bond Scripts
Here’s an interesting fact many fans weren’t aware of. When Fleming died in 1964, other leading novelists were told to put pen to paper. Roald Dahl, the author of classics like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and James and the Giant Peach wrote the script for You Only Live Twice.
18. Many Notable Actors Said No to Bond
There are a few famous actors who turned down the Bond role. They included David Niven, Cary Grant, Patrick McGoohan, Christopher Lee, Clint Eastwood, Burt Reynolds, Adam West, Tom Jones, Liam Neeson, Mel Gibson, Sam Neill, Hugh Grant, Gerard Butler, Sean Bean, and Will Smith.
19. There are More Blofeld Actors than Bond Actors
Believe it or not, more actors have played the role of the cat-stroking villain than that of the British Secret Service agent. There are a total of seven actors who have played Blofeld, while there are only six who have played Bond.
20. The Walther PPK Has a Link to Hitler
This is a strange fact that might blow your mind (pun intended). Apparently, the gun made popular by James Bond, the Walther PPK, is the same model that Hitler used to kill himself.
21. Pierce Brosnan Was Married to a Bond Girl
It seems Brosnan was destined for the Bond role. He was in fact married to the Bond girl from For Your Eyes Only. Unfortunately, the actress, Cassandra Harris died of cancer four years before Brosnan landed the Bond role in GoldenEye. She would’ve been proud.
22. M’s Name has a History
According to the novel, The Man With the Golden Gun, M’s full name is Sir Miles Messervy. Why is Bond’s boss referred to by a single initial? Apparently, M, director of the British Secret Service was inspired by a real-life naval-intelligence officer – Sir Mansfield Smith-Cunning.
He was a founder of Britain’s Secret Service Bureau and used to initialize documents with the letter “C”.
23. Men Dressed as Women in Goldfinger
Here’s a fun (yet absurd) movie fact! Remember those female pilots flying the planes in Pussy Galore’s Flying Circus in Goldfinger? Well, those “ladies” were actually men wearing blonde wigs – for the stunt scenes, at least! Thank goodness one of them didn’t catch Bond’s eye!
24. Goldfinger’s Voice Was Dubbed
This piece of Goldfinger trivia will throw you off track! According to Roger Moore’s book, Bond on Bond, Gert Frobe’s (the actor who played Goldfinger) voice was dubbed. The actor spoke poor English, so Michael Collins ended up voicing all of Goldfinger’s lines, which were then dubbed over Frobe’s performance. Who would have known?!
25. Ian Fleming Was a Real-Life Spy
Ian Fleming had a lot in common with his fictional character. Not only did he also like his Martini shaken, but he was a spy, too. Ian was recruited into naval intelligence and became the personal assistant to Admiral John Godfrey. It seems his experience inspired the icon that is 007.
26. Roger Moore Never Ran
You’ll be surprised to know that all of Roger Moore’s running scenes were filmed with a body double. Apparently, he felt that he looked awkward when running and so he gave the job to a body double in all of his seven Bond films. Let’s just say he didn’t have Bond’s backbone and bravery in real life…
Stocked up with 007 facts and inside information? We sure betcha!
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In the movie Goldfinger it was Jill Masterson not Tilly who was painted in gold paint, Tilly Masterson was killed by Oddjob and his hat.
You’re right! Typo error!
I think Brosnan and Craig should how both got second!