Sean Connery era (1962-1967; 1971)Edit

Dr. NoEdit

In 1962, Dr. No was the first James Bond novel cinematically adapted by EON Productions. It introduced Sean Connery as the first actor to portray James Bond on the big screen; Joseph Wiseman portrayed Dr. No.

Although the story follows the same general arc there are significant number of changes. These include: Dr. No's physical appearance changes in the film. Bond has a sexual encounter with one of Dr. No's operatives in the movie but not in the book. Honey Rider is never seen nude; when Bond first sees her she is wearing a bikini. In the book she is pegged out to be eaten by beach crabs; in the film, she is tied to drown in a water pool. Bond's fight with a giant squid is excluded from the film. Felix Leiter, Sylvia Trench, and Professor Dent were introduced to the story and the film series (Leiter had appeared in previous novels). In the novel, No's hands were cut off by Tong hit men; in the film his hands were destroyed by radiation, and his island fortress is nuclear-powered. The specific method in which Dr. No is killed is also changed significantly: in the movie, the villain is drowned in reactor coolant rather than buried alive in guano like he would have been in the book. Furthermore, Dr. No in the movie is an operative of SPECTRE rather than the Soviet Union. Fleming did not introduce SPECTRE until Thunderball in 1961.

From Russia with LoveEdit

The cinematic From Russia, with Love was released in 1963, produced by Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman, and directed by Terence Young. It was the second James Bond film in the official EON Productions series, and the second to star Sean Connery as the suave and sophisticated British Secret Service agent James Bond.

The main villains change from SMERSH (a division of Soviet Intelligence) to SPECTRE (a fictional terrorist organisation). Rene Mathis (from Casino Royale) appeared in the book, but not the movie. The story stayed true to the novel, except action sequences such as the boat chase were added.


Richard Maibaum, who wrote the previous films, returned to adapt the seventh James Bond novel, Goldfinger. Maibaum fixed the novel's heavily criticised plot hole, where Goldfinger actually attempts to empty Fort Knox. In the film, Bond notes it would take twelve days for Goldfinger to steal the gold, before the villain reveals he actually intends to irradiate it[1] with the then topical concept of a Red Chinese atomic bomb. However, Harry Saltzman disliked the first draft, and brought in Paul Dehn to revise it.[1] Hamilton said Dehn "brought out the British side of things".[2] Connery disliked his draft, so Maibaum returned.[1] Wolf Mankowitz, an uncredited screenwriter on Dr. No, suggested the scene where Oddjob puts his car into a car crusher to dispose of a dead body.[3]

In the novel, Goldfinger's obsession with gold is more explicit; sexually so. Both his family name and his first name are related to gold ("Auric" is an adjective pertaining to gold). He wears yellow briefs to suntan in, has a collection of yellow-jacketed pornographic books and can only find satisfaction in copulating with gold-painted women (supposedly prostitutes), he travels in a gold plated car, employs a blonde secretary and even has a ginger cat (which is eaten by Oddjob for dinner after Bond uses it in a ruse). He employs Korean servants who are repeatedly referred to as "yellow-faced". (Despite Goldfinger's relations with the Soviet Union, they are from South Korea, not its Communist North). The film keeps the colour of the Rolls-Royce and secretary’s hair, but not the other insensitive material, and adds other gold motifs (see film discussion). A bit of Goldfinger's eulogy to gold ("I love its colour, its brilliance, its divine heaviness.") is one of few dialogue lines from the novel to be kept relatively intact in the film, but Gert Fröbe maintains the subtext of his character's fetish for the metal through expressions, such as when Bond distracts his putt with an ingot, and when the villain is forced to turn away and leave Fort Knox's contents.


In 1965, the Thunderball film was released. Most of it is adapted from the novel, changed mostly to incorporate the pre-title teaser and unique gadgets. Story continuity is another major difference between the cinematic and the literary versions of Thunderball; SPECTRE was first featured in Thunderball but in the film series, it appeared earlier in Dr. No and From Russia with Love.

You Only Live TwiceEdit

In 1967, the You Only Live Twice was adapted into a film starring Sean Connery. You Only Live Twice is the first Bond movie to greatly deviate from the source material. The plot of the film is sufficiently different to be a different story, though several details remain the same (such as location and the primary characters). More specifically, other than the Japanese setting and some character names, the two stories are very different. Also, unlike most James Bond films featuring various locales around the world, almost the entire film is set in one country and several minutes are given over to an elaborate Japanese wedding. This is in keeping with Fleming's original novel, which also devoted a number of pages to the discussion of Japanese culture.

Diamonds Are ForeverEdit

In 1971, Diamonds Are Forever was adapted into a film starring Sean Connery as Bond. It is a loose adaptation of the novel, with the most notable difference being Ernst Stavro Blofeld as the villain, instead of the Spang brothers. While the book featured a straight-forward diamond smuggling plot, the film featured the diamonds being used in a laser satellite. Though many of the book's characters appear in the film (including Tiffany Case, Felix Leiter, and Shady Tree) they often have little in common with their screen counterparts besides their names.

George Lazenby era (1969)Edit

The On Her Majesty's Secret Service was adapted into a film in 1969. The major difference in it was that it succeeded You Only Live Twice, thus extending the roles of Blofeld and Tracy. Also, Blofeld's threat was extended from the United Kingdom to the entire world.

Roger Moore era ((1973-1985)Edit

Live and Let DieEdit

Live and Let Die, a film based loosely on the novel, was released in 1973. The film was directed by Guy Hamilton, produced by Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman and starred Roger Moore in his first outing as the secret agent. In the film, a drug lord known as Mr. Big plans to distribute two tonnes of heroin free so as to put rival drug barons out of business. Bond is soon trapped in a world of gangsters and voodoo as he fights to put a stop to Mr. Big's scheme.[4]

The characters as portrayed in the film differ from Fleming's descriptions. Mr. Big's real name in the movie is Dr. Kananga instead of Buonaparte Ignace Gallia, and he smuggles heroin instead of gold coins from Bloody Morgan's treasure. In the novel, Baron Samedi was only a voodoo myth – people believed Mr. Big was actually Baron Samedi or perhaps his zombie. Solitaire's real name is revealed in the novel, she does not lose her virginity to Bond until after the actual events in the novel, and there is no evidence that she risks losing her psychic powers by having sex. Also, in the novel she uses regular playing cards.

Some scenes from this novel were depicted in subsequent Bond movies; for example, the keelhauling sequence was later used in the film adaptation of For Your Eyes Only, and Felix Leiter was not fed to a shark until Licence to Kill, which also faithfully adapts this novel's shootout in the warehouse.

The Man with the Golden GunEdit

In 1974, EON Productions made a film based on The Man with the Golden Gun. In the film, Mary Goodnight is kidnapped, and also provides comic relief. Scaramanga's domicile changed from Cuba to China. Accordingly, the character of Felix Leiter was excluded while Nick-Nack, Andrea Anders and Hai Fat were added. Bond's attempt to kill M at the novel's beginning was excluded from the film. Also, the film's story has nothing to do with the sugar industry as in the novel but features a plot about solar lasers and circuitry as the villain's main agenda. In the film, Scaramanga fired a special gold plated gun which broke down into a pen, cigarette case, lighter and cuff link. This gun fired 4.2mm (slightly smaller than .17 Caliber), solid gold bullets.

The Spy Who Loved MeEdit

In 1977, the title The Spy Who Loved Me was used for the tenth film in the EON Productions series. It was the third to star Roger Moore as British Secret Service agent, Commander James Bond. Per Ian Fleming's wish the only elements from the novel that are used in the film are the character of James Bond (along with his MI6 associates) and the title. The story, all locations and all other characters are different, though the mobster henchmen, "Sluggsy" (a short, stocky, thug with a disease that prevents hair growth) and "Horror" a tall, gaunt thug with steel capped teeth) serve as inspiration for the movie henchmen "Sandor" (a short, stocky, bald thug) and "Jaws" (a giant, super strong thug with steel teeth). The metal teeth, especially, were thought quirky enough to be worth keeping by film producer Cubby Broccoli. Some elements from the book were used in other films, as well. For example, in Dr. No, Bond uses a pillow trick to make it appear he is asleep. The film was novelised the same year by screenwriter Christopher Wood and the resulting book was the first novelisation of a Bond film. To avoid confusion with Fleming's novel, the book was named James Bond, The Spy Who Loved Me.


Moonraker was used as the title for the eleventh James Bond film, produced by EON Productions and released in 1979. Directed by Lewis Gilbert and produced by Albert R. Broccoli, the film featured Roger Moore in his fourth appearance as Bond. As 1950s era nuclear missile technology was no longer relevant, however, the plot of the film was updated to focus on the new US space shuttle program and the story was completely re-written. Other than the Bond character (together with some of his MI-6 associates) and the title, very few elements from the book survived into the film version. Most prominently, the character of Hugo Drax was retained as the villain, but he was changed from a British industrial metallurgist and missile designer to an American aerospace industrialist. The principal Bond girl is retained as an undercover agent working within the Drax operation, but her name is changed from Gala Brand (a Scotland Yard agent working as Personal Assistant for Drax) to Holly Goodhead (a CIA agent working as an astronaut for Drax). As in the novel, the film starts out with Bond collecting evidence from the Drax mansion (on the Moonraker project site) and retains a scene where Bond and Goodhead are imprisoned beneath rocket exhaust nozzles to be incinerated upon launch (though the details of both elements are significantly changed). Also, the Nazi inspired element of Drax's motivation in the novel is indirectly preserved with the "master race" theme of the movie plot.[5] It is widely believed that Broccoli had decided to take advantage of the success of the film Star Wars and accordingly, the plot of Moonraker was modified so as to involve outer space.[6] Since the screenplay was original, EON Productions and Glidrose Publications authorized the film's screenwriter, Christopher Wood to write his second novelization based upon the film. It was titled James Bond and Moonraker, and became a best-seller in 1979.[7] Several elements of Moonraker were seen in other Bond films. Drax's warning to Bond to spend the prize money quickly after being defeated in a gamble was quoted in the 1983 film Octopussy. The 2002 film Die Another Day used some of the novel's content, such as the Blades club. According to actress Rosamund Pike, speaking for the DVD commentary of Die Another Day, her villain character in that film, Miranda Frost, was originally to have been named Gala Brand, the name of the Bond girl in this novel.[8]

For Your Eyes OnlyEdit

The title story of the collection lent its name to the 12th official James Bond film in the EON Productions series, For Your Eyes Only. Released in 1981, it was the fifth film to star Roger Moore as the British Secret Service agent, Commander James Bond and the first to move the title "Ian Fleming's" from above the title to above "James Bond 007". The film used some obvious elements and characters from the short stories "For Your Eyes Only" and "Risico" from this collection as well as elements from other Fleming novels. Some slightly similar ideas from the remaining short stories, "Quantum of Solace" and "The Hildebrand Rarity" might also be considered to have been incorporated into the movie of the same name, though in very oblique fashion.

In order to blend the plots of the two short stories, several changes were made for the film. Since the film is set in Greece, closer to the location of "Risico" than to that of "For Your Eyes Only", the Havelocks were changed from being Jamaican, as in the short story, to an Anglo-Greek couple (Mr. Havelock being English and Mrs. Havelock being Greek). Havelock's daughter, "Judy," was also renamed "Melina" in the film, the Greek word for honey (a reference to the first screen Bond girl's name). The film also contains elements from several Ian Fleming stories: The warring smuggler characters Kristatos and Columbo come from "Risico". The keelhauling sequence comes from the novel Live and Let Die, a scene unused in the previous film adaptation. The Identigraph comes from the novel Goldfinger, where it was originally called the "Identicast". The film's opening, with Bond laying flowers at the grave of his wife, refers to both the film On Her Majesty's Secret Service and a scene in the novel where it is revealed that 007 visits annually the grave of Vesper Lynd (from Casino Royale).


Octopussy (1983), starring Roger Moore as James Bond, was the thirteenth film in the EON Productions series. The original "Octopussy" short story provided the back story for the film Octopussy's family, while "The Property of a Lady" was more closely adapted for the Fabergé egg auction sequence at Sotheby's.

The plot element of a double agent within the Secret Service was later referenced with the character of Miranda Frost in Die Another Day as well as M's traitorous bodyguard, Craig Mitchell, in 2008's Quantum of Solace.

One notes that the phrase, "property of a lady," occurs in the cinematic version of Octopussy: early in the story, when James attends an auction at which he intends to outbid Prince Kamal Khan for the Fabergé egg, the auctioneer identifies the provenance of said egg as, "Property of a lady."

A View to a KillEdit

Although A View to a Kill is adapted from Ian Fleming's short story "From a View to a Kill", the film is the third Bond film after The Spy Who Loved Me and Octopussy to have an entirely original screenplay. In A View to a Kill, Bond is pitted against Max Zorin, who plans to destroy California's Silicon Valley. Some reviewers have noted parallels in the plot and villain to those of Goldfinger[9].

Timothy Dalton era (1987-1989)Edit

The Living DaylightsEdit

The Living Daylights was later adapted as the fifteenth film (1987) and starred Timothy Dalton in his first appearance as Bond.

At a time when the films often shared no more than the title, the major recurring characters, and some character names with the book, the plot of "The Living Daylights" was used almost untouched in the film of the same name, setting up the rest of the film. Bond finishes the segment with the same words as his literary counterpart; "I must have scared the living daylights out of her". The character of Trigger is changed from a professional sniper to that of cello player Kara Milovy.

Licence to KillEdit

Plot elements from "The Hildebrand Rarity" were incorporated in the 16th Bond film, Licence to Kill (1989). There is one oblique connection between the short story and the For Your Eyes Only film, as both feature yachtsman antagonists and involve underwater diving. Later, Milton Krest (with his wife-beating tendencies (with a stingray-tail whip) transferred to the film's main villain), his "foundation", the "Wavekrest" and "the corrector" all were incorporated into Licence to Kill.

The novelisation of the Licence to Kill screenplay was the first since Moonraker in 1979. Then-current Bond series novelist John Gardner novelised the Michael G. Wilson-Richard Maibaum screenplay — a great challenge, because his stories follow Fleming's continuity (albeit updated); Felix Leiter already had lost an arm and a leg to a shark in the Live and Let Die novel, an incident recycled in Licence to Kill. Resultantly, in the chapter "Lightning Sometimes Strikes Twice", the novelisation requires reader acceptance of Bond dealing with Leiter's twice being maimed by a shark; however, Gardner does not attempt to reconcile the presence of Milton Krest, (who was murdered in The Hildebrand Rarity short story).

The relatively faithful novelisation adds detail to resolve some issues around the film's more fantastic elements, notably explaining the unrealistic behaviour of the 'Stinger missiles' on-screen. It also differs from the script in places: (i) Bond uses a Walther P38K, not a Walther PPK (as in the film), because SIS had replaced it, a fact in Gardner's Bond novels; (ii) Q has an extra scene (occurring while Bond is at Sánchez's Olimpatec Meditation Institute), wherein he joins a police captain in raiding Sánchez's house. Although he then had written eight Bond novels, the novelisation was Gardner's first work featuring Q; before Licence to Kill, Q was heard of, not seen in his novels, having been replaced by his assistant, Ann Reilly, Q'ute. The novelised Licence to Kill story occurs before Win, Lose or Die, wherein Bond is promoted to Captain (in the novelisation and the film, Bond is a Commander).

Daniel Craig era (2006-present)Edit

Casino RoyaleEdit

The film overall stays true to the original novel with most of the changes being adaptations to the changing times (such as Le Chiffre working for terrorists instead of Russians and the big stakes game at the casino is Texas Hold 'Em rather than Baccarat) and the circumstances and motive for Vesper's death are altered dramatically.

Quantum of SolaceEdit

Quantum of Solace was chosen as the title of the 22nd Bond movie, although it only shares the story's title (according to the film's producer and plot developer), [10] and primary thematic element, that of one's humanity vanishing with a quantum of solace's (according to the film's star) [11]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 James Chapman (1999). Licence to Thrill. London/New York City: Cinema and Society. pp. 100–110. ISBN 1-86064-387-6. 
  2. Bouzerau, 31
  3. "Production Notes - Goldfinger". Retrieved 2008-03-15. 
  4. Inside "Live and Let Die" Documentary (Live and Let Die Special Edition DVD)
  5. Template:Cite DVD
  6. "Revelation of Moonraker not being a reaction to Star Wars". Retrieved 2007-08-03. 
  7. "007 Magazine: A Complete Bibliography". Retrieved 2007-09-16. 
  8. Rosamund Pike, DVD commentary, Die Another Day, MGM Home Entertainment, 2003
  9. IMDb user reviews for A View to a Kill
  10. Chris Tilly (2008-01-28). "Bond Interview". IGN. Retrieved 2008-01-28. 
  11. ((^ a b "Daniel: the title is meant to confuse". Press and Journal. 2008-01-24.))

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