|On the 28th April
1976 Kevin McClory announced his
intention to make 'James Bond of the
Secret Service', later 'Warhead', based
on the original 'Thunderball' storylines.
This had followed a 10 year term the High
Court in London had set before any new
production could commence on the original
had attracted Sean Connery - the two
being involved in scripting, with Len
Deighton. Filming was to start in
February 1977, planned for New York,
Japan and the Bahamas. But the project
fell through after Cubby Broccoli took
out an injunction to stop the production.
McClory had also taken out an injunction
to stop filming of 'The Spy Who Loved Me'
after it was discovered it was (originally)
to feature SPECTRE, which McClory was
claiming he had co-created. Over six
years later, 'Never Say Never Again', the
second unofficial Bond picture, was
It opens promisingly
with a top theme song sung by Lani Hall
and an original title sequence with Bond
on a training exercise. It is without the
planned pre-title sequence which was to
have been set at a medieval pageant with
knights on horseback and Bond
steeplechasing an assassin through a car
park. But it doesn't continue as strongly
as it starts and the quality of the film
can be summed up by Petachi's Ford
Cortina and the presence of the M.F.I.
Furniture Group in its credits.
It does feature
excellent performances from a not-so-serious
Sean Connery, a superb Rowan Atkinson as
the British agent abroad (maaaaarvellous),
Alec "lucky bloody you" McCowen
as an alternative 'Q' and Klaus Maria
Brandauer as 'Maximillian Largo'. The
film does have its highlights including
the Monte Carlo chase sequence - "don't
touch him, he's mine". Ricou
Browning returned to undersee underwater
filming (after sterling work on 'Thunderball').
The fight at Shrublands, the 'human
torpedo capsules' and Kim Basinger. The
script had also caused problems, with
writers continuing to work on it during
production. There was also continual
delays with filming - a monsoon in the
Bahamas put filming back by a week, Irvin
Kershner (the director) "was not the
fastest guy in the world" according
to Jack Schwartzman (the producer) and re-shoots
were necessary by the end of the planned
production date. Sean Connery was surely
wondering if he should have said 'never'.
for 'Never Say Never Again' were acquired
from Taliafilm by MGM in December 1997.
It was announced in November 2013 that
the rights issue around the characters
and concepts of Blofeld and SPECTRE
between Danjaq and the McClory estate had
Nurse: Mr. Bond, I
need a urine sample. If you could fill
this beaker for me?
James Bond: From here?
(A homage to the TV
series Porridge, written by Ian Le
Frenais and Dick Clement, uncredited
script associates on 'Never Say Never