Way back in 1961, producers Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman purchased the filming rights to Ian Fleming’s best-selling espionage novels about British secret service operative James Bond.
They founded Eon Productions and, with financial backing from United Artists, produced Dr. No, directed by Terence Young and featuring a young Sean Connery as Bond. That movie was released 60 years ago this year and back then they probably had no idea what they had just started.
Following the release of its release in 1962, Broccoli and Saltzman created the holding company Danjaq to progress the James Bond series with From Russia With Love and from there, the series has accrued twenty-five films and featured six actors in the lead role.
It was the highest-earning movie franchise in the world until Harry Potter, re-born Star Wars, and Marvel came along, earning over $14 billion at current adjusted prices. The series has won six Academy Awards, including one at the latest Oscars for Billy Eilish’s theme song for No Time To Die. In 1982 Albert R. Broccoli received the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award.
It shows no signs of stopping, with the announcement of the new James Bond actor rumored to be coming during this anniversary year and a themed challenge show being revealed by Amazon in the last week.
Now the official James Bond Twitter account has released the 60th-anniversary celebration reel that just aired this weekend at the Oscars.
The literary 007 is also continuing, with Anthony Horowitz’s third continuation novel due for release in May this year. This will follow on from Forever And A Day, which was set before Casino Royale, and Trigger Mortis which was set in 1957 and directly after the events of Goldfinger. With A Mind To Kill is rumored to be set after The Man With The Golden Gun.
Speaking of literary James Bond, we recently re-read all of the original Fleming Bond novels in order. Our Fleming Revisited series can be found at the following links: Casino Royale, Live And Let Die, Moonraker, Diamonds Are Forever, From Russia With Love, Dr. No, Goldfinger, For Your Eyes Only, Thunderball, The Spy Who Loved Me, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, You Only Live Twice, Octopussy And The Living Daylights and The Man With The Golden Gun.
We also interviewed writer and producer Mark Edlitz about his excellent book, The Lost Adventures Of James Bond.