The Artist of Bond

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Finding Forrester. Entrapment. The Rock. Rising Sun. The Hunt for Red October. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. The Presidio. The Untouchables. The Name of the Rose. The First Great Train Robbery. A Bridge too Far. The Man Who Would Be King. Marnie.

I saw my first James Bond movie (with my Dad, Live and Let Die, in Hyderabad) as a teenager, and I was hooked on 007. No different from Steven Spielberg:

The first James Bond movie I ever saw was Dr. No. I saw it in Arizona where I grew up, with my mother and a few friends. I remember feeling that it was unlike anything I had experienced before…it was a new flavor in movies that I had never tasted and I was suddenly craving for more.

When I joined IIT-Madras, I remember The Spy Who Loved Me was playing in theatres in Madras (now Chennai), and a handful of us went to see it. I remember it being a late-night show, and I was so fired up that I could not sleep after returning back to Godavari hostel. Next morning, in Chemistry class, I finally dozed off, and was rudely awakened by Professor Kuriacose:

Would you rather be sleeping in the dorm?

Yes.

I got up and left the class (to the amusement of my classmates, and the annoyance of the professor).

Peter Jackson:

I went through my big Bond period after I saw The Man With The Gold Gun, I made my own Bond film. It was roughly ten minutes….Somewhere in a box on my shelves, I still have my own ten-minute Super 8 bond film.

After I arrived in the US, I have seen every Bond movie on its opening day. I remember, in 1987, as a PhD student at Cornell, I postponed a meeting with Robin Roundy, who wondered what could be so important. I told him that The Living Daylights was opening, and I wanted to be the first in line to get tickets. (I was third; there were two other guys ahead of me!).

Ridley Scott:

I recognized the Bond films as a different kind of cinema. They were very attractive and designed for a very big audience. The best one for me is From Russia With Love.

My favorite Sean Connery Bond film?

Goldfinger.

In 1997, when I was on sabbatical at MIT, Gunjan and I went to see Tomorrow Never Dies. We liked it so much that we went and saw it again!

In August 2012, I stopped by London en route to Austria to visit my sister, just so that I could see the Designing 007: 50 Years of Bond Style exhibition at Barbican. Upstairs, I went to the bar and had a Vesper Martini. Around the same time, I received an email that I was elected INFORMS Fellow. 😏

As you know, to me the most consequential aspect of COVID19 has been the delay of No Time to Die.🤷🏽‍♂️

RIP Sean Connery.

Dr. No. From Russia with Love. Goldfinger. Thunderball. You Only Live Twice. Diamonds are Forever. Never Say Never Again.

1 comment

  1. Oh, I hadn’t heard. Sad. I think I had told you that I had met the laser-wielding robot in Die Another Day with Halle & Pierce at an automation conference in Japan. The robot would make whatever martinis we would order from “it”. They were yummy.

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