It’s been over forty years now when Bond filmmakers were first faced with their biggest challenge – “Who would be the next James Bond?”
Coming after the reign of Sean Connery, who played the role in the last five films, finding a worthwhile candidate seemed like an impossible challenge. Still, the franchise had to go on and this problem had to be tackled. So the process began of trying to find the next 007.
As all Bond fans know the role eventually was handed to twenty-eight year old George Lazenby, a former Australian model, who would be the lead in 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, his one outing as 007.
But what about all the other actors who were considered and auditioned? Life magazine had documented some of the process and the actors who took a shot at becoming one of the most famous characters in films and they’ve finally opened up their vaults so we can see.
I find it somewhat odd that some of these photos haven’t been seen in so long, considering how big a deal getting a new James Bond was at the time. I mean, nowadays this would be a huge deal and every entertainment show and magazine would be feverishly reporting on every minute detail of it and the whole process would be documented and shown to audiences. But I guess that’s what makes these photos so special.
It’s an interesting look at some of the possible candidates at the time and to think of what might have been.