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Topic: Are Bond Actors Movie Stars?

I wonder if the Bond actors are themselves bonafide film stars.

Arguably, the real star of the franchise is the character himself - perhaps, too, all that goes with it (gadgets, action sequences, M etc).

But do you think any of the Bond actors were stars in their own right?

Sean was certainly not a film star prior to securing the role. Marnie was first and foremost a Hitchcock picture. With Bond, he became an icon and this status was solidified with Highlander, The Name of the Rose, The Untouchables, Indy 3 and The Hunt for Red October. It was an astonishing run of successes which didn't let up until Medicine Man flopped.

Lazenby certainly wasn't a star before Bond and returned to obscurity thereafter.

Roger, of course, was a huge television star thanks to The Saint and was mobbed wherever he went in the world. His stardom, however, wasn't enough to turn his films Crossplot and The Man Who Haunted Himself into box office hits, and he returned to television with The Persuaders. Interestingly, he was a big enough star to be offered his own chat show, an offer he declined. During Bond, he had hits like Gold and Shout at the Devil, but he also relied on ensemble pieces like North Sea Hijack, The Wild Geese and The Sea Wolves, while That Lucky Touch ,The Sicilian Cross and The Naked Face failed to hit big. As Bond, however, he was consistently bankable and starred in some of the series' most successful entries.

Dalton , for his part, was certainly not a movie star, but was well-respected in theatre, and swiftly returned to supporting roles after his tenure was up (and he was terrific in The Rocketeer, delighting us all again in Hot Fuzz).

Pierce was making television films (good ones, too, like Murder 101 and Don't Talk to Strangers, Death Train and Live Wire), living off the status he had acquired in Remington Steele. After Goldeneye, he was suddenly headlining films like Dante's Peak and The Thomas Crown Affair (one of my favourite films!), but his post-Bond career has been patchy. The November Man, probably his last attempt at a blockbuster, flopped, while the ensemble Mamma Mia remains his most successful non-Bond film. He has recently fallen back into supporting roles with tired genre efforts Survivor, Spinning Man and Final Score.

Craig , lastly, has had a fairly patchy film career with flops like The Invasion, The Golden Compass, Cowboys & Aliens, Dream House and Kings littered among hits like Defiance, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and Logan Lucky.

What does everyone else think?

Last edited by DavidJones (27th Mar 2019 23:05)

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, The Spy Who Loved Me, Goldfinger and Moonraker.

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Re: Are Bond Actors Movie Stars?

Connery, Moore, Brosnan and Craig are all movie stars because of Bond. Moore was a big TV star before, and Brosnan was one but to a lesser extent.

Connery got the Marnie gig because his first two Bond films made him a huge star. Hitchcock wanted to hire stars for his films.

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Re: Are Bond Actors Movie Stars?

its strange with dalton because he is described as a light leading man but cubby enquired about him in 1968 so he must have made an impression somewhere.

"You're in the wrong business... leave it to the professionals!"
James Bond- Licence To Kill

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Re: Are Bond Actors Movie Stars?

Interesting question. Connery certainly made the most of his post-Bond career. If you define a movie star as an actor who can “open” a movie, he’s the only one on the list who qualifies.

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Re: Are Bond Actors Movie Stars?

I saw Butterfly on a Wheel again the other day and it really is a smashing film. Pierce very much playing against type.

My Top 10 Bonds: Octopussy, Goldeneye, From Russia With Love, Tomorrow Never Dies, Licence to Kill, For Your Eyes Only, The Living Daylights, The Spy Who Loved Me, Goldfinger and Moonraker.