Video: James Bond film franchise turns 50 today; future looks bright with Daniel Craig, Adele and “Skyfall”
Fifty years ago today — on Oct. 5, 1962 — a modestly budgeted spy movie called “Dr. No” opened in theaters, introducing the movie world to “Bond, James Bond.”
As the Associated Press reports, the cinematic saga of 007 began when two upstart producers, Canadian Harry Saltzman and American Albert “Cubby” Broccoli, acquired the rights to a series of novels by Ian Fleming, a former World War II intelligence officer who had created Bond as sort of a fantasy alter-ego.
Sean Connery, a relatively unknown Scottish actor and former bodybuilder, was cast as Bond against the wishes of studio United Artists, which wanted an established star such as Cary Grant.
The mood of the now-venerable franchise was set by artists like John Barry, composer of Bond’s pulse-quickening theme music; Maurice Binder, who created the famous gun-barrel title sequence; and designer Ken Adam, a German-born former RAF fighter pilot whose futuristic sets gave the films their look of modernist cool.
“Skyfall,” the 23rd Bond film, will be released in U.S. theaters on Nov. 9. The film got a big promotional push over the summer during the London Olympics, when current Bond star Daniel Craig appeared in character with Queen Elizabeth II during the opening ceremonies.
Plus, one of the biggest current pop stars, British songstress Adele, has recorded the theme song to “Skyfall,” which was released today, just in time for Bond’s big 5-0.