Sean Connery returned for the seventh movie in the Bond series with James matching wits with his nemesis, Blofeld, here played by Charles Gray (pictured below right) – the third Blofeld in as many films, who wants to use the world’s diamond supply to build an orbiting space laser.
This is one of the weakest Bonds, with its plot about diamond smuggling developing rather tiresomely into a chase with Moon buggies and Connery simply going through the motions.
The Las Vegas sequences have some dash, however – including James ripping Vegas apart in a great chase in his Ford Mustang Mach 1 – and Bruce Glover and Putter Smith make an intriguing double act of the gay hitmen, Wint and Kidd.
Sadly, it was to be Connery’s swan-song as 007 but came as a welcome (albeit brief) return to Bond form after the dismal performance by George Lazenby in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969).
Sean Connery quit the Bond series after 1967’s You Only Live Twice, essentially because he was fed up with all of the 007 hype and hubbub.
He had also apparently experienced strained relations with the producers. The chances of getting him to ever return seemed non-existent, and it appeared that the franchise would actually go for an American – John Gavin of Psycho – as the new Bond.
However, Connery’s post-Bond career hadn’t exactly set the world on fire, so his prospects weren’t as promising as he might have liked.
He also wanted to set up a charity, so he negotiated a then-astonishing salary of roughly $1.25 million plus a percentage, all of which went to the Scottish International Education Trust.
“Hi. I’m Plenty . . . Plenty O’Toole”
“Named after your father perhaps?”
Jill St. John
Sir Donald Munger