By Bobbie Cimo
It’s easy to tell that I’m a James Bond freak. Not only does my E-mail address have 007 in it and my mouse pad has Sean Connery’s picture on it, but my screen saver at work flashes different Bond imagery across it. But I’m not just a James Bond fan, I’m a Sean Connery, James Bond fan. You know the type who thinks there’s only one Bond.
At my Artist Way Class a few weeks back, we were asked to write down five of our favorite movies and give a line or two on what each movie was about or why we liked it. On my list was “From Russia With Love”, but when it came to telling why I picked it, I had to be honest with my classmates. I only went to see him (Sean Connery) and it took me five times to figure out what the plot was about. I have since seen it many more times, and I still don’t care about the plot.
I like Roger Moore, but not as James Bond. In my eyes, he’ll always be Simon Templar, TV’s version of “The Saint”. Just as Pierce Brosnan will always be Remington Steele to me.
In between, there were a few other Bonds. One being George Lazenby, who played in “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” I would loved to have seen Sean Connery do the part, as it was the only movie where Bond falls in love and gets married. But instead it went to Lazenby, who had thought that by making a Bond flick, it would lead him to more lucrative movie deals. So he quit after only one Bond movie. The parts never came his way and rumor had it he gambled away all the earnings he made from his 007 flick, even before the movie was released.
Also playing the fictional character was Timothy Dalton, who I basically remembered from playing in a bad mini-series, called “Scarlett”, which was suppose to be the sequel to “Gone With The Wind”. However, he did play a more serious Bond than others, but because I associated him with the mini-series, I could never think of him as 007.
Just for the record, I do find Daniel Craig to be the second best Bond there is. He might not be a Sean Connery, but he does a terrific job of it. By the way, his favorite Bond is Connery, too.
I have seen Roger Moore a few times in person, and once I even got to see Sean Connery, himself. I was backstage and he was standing alone, a few feet away from me. But I found myself unable to approach him. I just remember his arched eyebrows and how they framed those magnificent eyes of his. And I’m not ashamed to say, when his eyes met mine, inwardly, I melted.
It took me a long time to realize why I didn’t take the opportunity to go up to him and tell him how much I had enjoyed his work. The truth of the matter is I think I was afraid that he might not measure up to my expectation, not only as James Bond, but as Sean Connery. And perhaps some things are best left unknown.
Less than a decade ago, I was a smoker. I have since given up the habit; but at the time, I could have easily stepped out of my office onto the rooftop of CBS for a cigarette. Unfortunately, it was a bad way to meet a lot of interesting people.
One wintry evening, while at work, I found myself in need of a smoke, so I stepped out into the darkness. Since it was raining, I had no choice but to huddle against the outside glass wall of my office so I could stand beneath the narrow awning that was protecting me from the rain. Suddenly, what seemed to be from out of nowhere, appeared a tall, dark stranger dressed all in black, wearing a turtle neck sweater. As he took a puff of his cigarette, he struck up a conversation with me. I could see from the spray of light coming from my office, behind us, that his eyes were blue. His chiseled features, along with his cleft chin, gave him a rugged appearance. And when he spoke, it was with a charming British accent, so no matter what he had to say, it sounded wonderful. It was Timothy Dalton.
We talked about our mutual bad smoking habit-- the pride he had in his son-- and the weather differences between London and California. Over a second cigarette, we laughed and talked some more, until he was told that he was needed on stage, whereas I went back into my office, pleasantly surprised to learn what a nice man he was. He might not know it, but that night he earned himself a new fan. And as I sat back at my desk, something dawned on me. It might not have been Sean Connery, but I had been outside, into the night and out in the rain, smoking a cigarette with Bond…James Bond. How cool was that?