James Bond: Moneypenny star spills Sean Connery 007 secrets

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As suave and sophisticated as he was strapping on-screen, Connery established 007 as the ultimate gentleman spy. However, the star had come from a very different background and long-term co-star Maxwell revealed just how much the Scot changed over the course of the first few Bond movies. 

Maxwell was there from the very start of Connery’s journey when he was cast in the role by producer Cubby Broccoli.

She said: “I had first met Sean in Cubby’s office back at the beginning. He had that wonderful atmosphere of menace and moved, as Cubby said, like a panther. But he was still a poor young actor in rumpled corduroys who looked like he lived in a bedsit.

“He had been taught everything from how to dress and where to buy his shirts to table manners. His Scottish accent was ironed out. In Dr No they had to film his dialogue one line at a time.”

Maxwell added: “By 1964, however, when we had the party at the Dorchester for the third film, Goldfinger, he was very much his own man…

“I went over to get some caviar. Sean was eating the caviar with a big serving spoon. I said: ‘Sean, you mustn’t eat from that’. He just turned round and said quite pleasantly: ‘I can have caviar whenever I want now.’

“I think he was serious. I don’t think he was drunk. I’ve never seen Sean drunk.”

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“Oh ho, it did affect him but in a nice way because he came back full of the Bond image, he said it (the famous line) in the most wonderful way. Every woman in the world wanted to meet Bond, Jame  Bond after that.

“The director Terence Young said ‘That’s exactly what I want, I want you to play it just like that.’ Sean said to me, ‘The trouble is I can’t remember what I did.’”

Maxwell revealed that, as his confidence grew, Connery even began to improvise a little with the script: “In From Russia With Love, Lotte Lenya was trying to kill Bond by kicking him with a poisoned knife in her boot. Instead, he kills her, and Connery added the line, ‘At least she had her kicks’.”


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