Sean Connery

Sir Sean Connery, the Original James Bond, Dies at 90

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Legendary Scottish actor Sir Sean Connery has passed away at the age of 90. The actor, who originated the role of dashing spy James Bond, passed away in his sleep while in the Bahamas. Publicist Nancy Seltzer released a statement saying, “His wife Micheline and his two sons, Jason and Stephane have confirmed that he died peacefully in his sleep surrounded by family. There will be a private ceremony followed by a memorial yet to be planned once the virus has ended.”

Bond producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli said Connery “was and shall always be remembered as the original James Bond whose indelible entrance into cinema history began when he announced those unforgettable words, ‘The name’s Bond… James Bond.’ He revolutionized the world with his gritty and witty portrayal of the sexy and charismatic secret agent. He is undoubtedly largely responsible for the success of the film series and we shall be forever grateful to him.”

Connery first played Bond in 1962’s Dr. No, and would go on to play the gentleman spy in six more films. But while Bond was a defining role for Connery, he delivered memorable performances in many beloved films such as Marnie, The Man Who Would Be King, The Hunt for Red October, The Rock, and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, in which he memorably played Indiana’s father, Professor Henry Jones.

Connery won a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his work in 1987’s The Untouchables. He also earned two BAFTA Awards (one being a BAFTA Academy Fellowship Award), and three Golden Globes, including the Cecil B. DeMille Award. He was a Kennedy Center Honoree in 1999, and was knighted in 2000. He last appeared onscreen in the 2003 comic book adaptation, The League of Extraordinary Gentleman.

“It is with such sadness that I heard of the passing of one of the true greats of cinema,” said current Bond actor Daniel Craig. “Sir Sean Connery will be remembered as Bond and so much more. He defined an era and a style. The wit and charm he portrayed on screen could be measured in mega watts; he helped create the modern blockbuster. He will continue to influence actors and film-makers alike for years to come. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones. Wherever he is, I hope there is a golf course.”

But Connery’s legend isn’t without problems. In a 1965 interview with Playboy magazine, Connery was asked about a scene in which Bond hits a woman. He replied that he didn’t “think there is anything particularly wrong about hitting a woman — although I don’t recommend doing it in the same way that you’d hit a man. An openhanded slap is justified — if all other alternatives fail and there has been plenty of warning.” His first wife, Diane Cilento, alleges that Connery abused her in her 2006 autobiography My Nine Lives.

Many took to social media to remember the iconic actor:

(via Variety, featured image: Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for AFI)

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Chelsea Steiner
Chelsea was born and raised in New Orleans, which explains her affinity for cheesy grits and Britney Spears. An pop culture journalist since 2012, her work has appeared on Autostraddle, AfterEllen, and more. Her beats include queer popular culture, film, television, republican clownery, and the unwavering belief that 'The Long Kiss Goodnight' is the greatest movie ever made. She currently resides in sunny Los Angeles, with her husband, 2 sons, and one poorly behaved rescue dog. She is a former roller derby girl and a black belt in Judo, so she is not to be trifled with. She loves the word “Jewess” and wishes more people used it to describe her.