Sir Sean Connery (born Thomas Connery; 25 August 1930 – 31 October 2020) was a Scottish actor. He was the first actor to portray fictional British secret agent James Bond on film, starring in seven Bond films between 1962 and 1983. Originating the role in Dr. No, Connery played Bond in six of Eon Productions’ entries and made his final appearance in the Jack Schwartzman-produced Never Say Never Again.
Connery began acting in smaller theatre and television productions until his breakout role as Bond. Although he did not enjoy the off-screen attention the role gave him, the success of the Bond films brought Connery offers from notable directors such as Alfred Hitchcock, Sidney Lumet and John Huston. Their films in which Connery appeared included Marnie (1964), The Hill (1965), Murder on the Orient Express (1974), and The Man Who Would Be King (1975). He also appeared in A Bridge Too Far (1977), Highlander (1986), The Name of the Rose (1986), The Untouchables (1987), Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989), The Hunt for Red October (1990), Dragonheart (1996), The Rock (1996), and Finding Forrester (2000). Connery officially retired from acting in 2006, although he briefly returned for voice-over roles in 2012.
His achievements in film were recognised with an Academy Award, two BAFTA Awards (including the BAFTA Fellowship), and three Golden Globes, including the Cecil B. DeMille Award and a Henrietta Award. In 1987, he was made a Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters in France, and he received the US Kennedy Center Honors lifetime achievement award in 1999. Connery was knighted in the 2000 New Year Honours for services to film drama.In 2004, a poll in the UK Sunday Herald recognized Connery as “The Greatest Living Scot” and a 2011 EuroMillions survey named him “Scotland’s Greatest Living National Treasure”. He was voted by People magazine as the “Sexiest Man Alive” in 1989 and the “Sexiest Man of the Century” in 1999.
James David Graham Niven (; 1 March 1910 – 29 July 1983) was an English actor, memoirist and novelist. He won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as Major Pollock in Separate Tables (1958). Other noted roles included Squadron Leader Peter Carter in A Matter of Life and Death, Phileas Fogg in Around the World in 80 Days, Sir Charles Lytton (“the Phantom”) in The Pink Panther and James Bond in Casino Royale (1967).
Born in London, Niven attended Heatherdown Preparatory School and Stowe School before gaining a place at the Royal Military College, Sandhurst. After Sandhurst, he joined the British Army and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the Highland Light Infantry. Upon developing an interest in acting he found a role as an extra in the British film There Goes the Bride (1932). Bored with the peacetime army, he resigned his commission in 1933, relocated to New York, then traveled to Hollywood. There he hired an agent and had several small parts in films through 1935, including a non-speaking role in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer’s Mutiny on the Bounty. This brought him to wider attention within the film industry, catching the eye of Samuel Goldwyn and leading to a contract.
Parts in major motion pictures followed, including Dodsworth (1936), The Charge of the Light Brigade (1936), and The Prisoner of Zenda (1937). By 1938 he was starring as the leading man in ‘A’ films. Upon the outbreak of the Second World War, Niven returned to Britain and rejoined the army, being recommissioned as a lieutenant. In 1942 he co-starred in the morale-building film about the development of the Supermarine Spitfire fighter, The First of the Few (American title Spitfire), which was enthusiastically endorsed by Winston Churchill.
Niven resumed his acting career after his demobilisation, and was voted the second-most popular British actor in the 1945 Popularity Poll of British film stars. He appeared in A Matter of Life and Death (1946), The Bishop’s Wife (1947) with Cary Grant, and Enchantment (1948), all of which received critical acclaim. Niven later appeared in The Elusive Pimpernel (1950), The Toast of New Orleans (1950), Happy Go Lovely (1951), Happy Ever After (1954) and Carrington V.C. (1955) before scoring a big success as Phileas Fogg in Michael Todd’s production of Around the World in 80 Days (1956). Niven appeared in nearly a hundred films, and many shows for television. He also began writing books, with considerable commercial success. In 1982 he appeared in Blake Edwards’ final “Pink Panther” films Trail of the Pink Panther and Curse of the Pink Panther, reprising his role as Sir Charles Lytton.
George Robert Lazenby (; born 5 September 1939) is an Australian actor and former model. He was the second actor to portray fictional British secret agent James Bond in the Eon Productions film series, playing the character in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Having appeared in only one film, Lazenby’s tenure as Bond was the shortest among the actors in the series. He was also the youngest actor cast as Bond, at age 29, and the only one born outside of the British Isles.
Beginning his professional career as a model, Lazenby had only acted in commercials when he was cast to replace original Bond actor Sean Connery. He declined to return in subsequent Bond films and instead pursued roles in films throughout the 1970s that included Universal Soldier, Who Saw Her Die?, Stoner, The Man from Hong Kong and The Kentucky Fried Movie. After his career stalled during this period, he moved into business and invested in real estate.
Lazenby later appeared in roles that parodied the James Bond character. In 2017, a Hulu docudrama film, Becoming Bond, featured Lazenby recounting his life story and portrayal as Bond.
Sir Roger George Moore (14 October 1927 – 23 May 2017) was an English actor. He was the third actor to portray fictional British secret agent James Bond in the Eon Productions film series, playing the character in seven feature films between 1973 and 1985. Moore’s seven appearances as Bond, from Live and Let Die to A View to a Kill, are the most of any actor in the Eon-produced entries.On television, Moore played the lead role of Simon Templar, the title character in the British mystery thriller series The Saint (1962–1969). He also had roles in American series, including Beau Maverick on the Western Maverick (1960–1961), where he replaced James Garner as the lead, and a co-lead of the action-comedy The Persuaders! (1971–1972). Continuing to act on screen in the decades after his retirement from the Bond franchise, Moore’s final appearance was in a pilot for a new Saint series that became a 2017 television film.
Moore was appointed a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador in 1991 and was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003 for services to charity. In 2007, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contributions to the film industry. In 2008, the government of France made him a Commander of the Order of Arts and Letters.
Timothy Leonard Dalton Leggett (; born 21 March 1946) is a British actor. Beginning his career on stage, he made his film debut as Philip II of France in the 1968 historical drama The Lion in Winter. He gained international prominence as the fourth actor to portray fictional secret agent James Bond in the Eon Productions film series, where he starred in The Living Daylights (1987) and Licence to Kill (1989). Dalton has also appeared in the films Flash Gordon (1980), The Rocketeer (1991), Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003), Hot Fuzz (2007), and The Tourist (2010). On television, Dalton as played Mr. Rochester in the BBC serial Jane Eyre (1983), Rhett Butler in the CBS miniseries Scarlett (1994), Rassilon in the BBC One science fiction adventure Doctor Who (2009–2010), Sir Malcolm Murray on the Showtime horror drama Penny Dreadful (2014–2016), and the Chief on the DC Universe / HBO Max superhero comedy-drama Doom Patrol (2019–present).
Pierce Brosnan (; born 16 May 1953) is an Irish actor, film producer, and environmental activist. He is best known as the fifth actor to play secret agent James Bond in the Bond film series, starring in four films from 1995 to 2002 (GoldenEye, Tomorrow Never Dies, The World Is Not Enough, and Die Another Day) and portraying the character in multiple video games.
After leaving school at age 16, Brosnan began training in commercial illustration and went on to attend the Drama Centre in London for three years. Following a stage acting career, he rose to popularity in the television series Remington Steele (1982–1987). After the conclusion of the series, Brosnan appeared in films such as the Cold War spy film The Fourth Protocol (1987) and the comedy Mrs. Doubtfire (1993). After achieving worldwide fame for his role as James Bond, Brosnan took the lead in other major films including the epic disaster adventure film Dante’s Peak (1997) and the remake of the heist film The Thomas Crown Affair (1999). Since leaving the role of Bond, he has starred in films such as the musical comedy Mamma Mia! (2008), the political thriller The Ghost Writer (2010), the action fantasy Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010), the action spy thriller The November Man (2014) and the Mamma Mia! sequel Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018).
Brosnan has received two Golden Globe Award nominations, first for the miniseries Nancy Astor (1982) and next for the dark comedy film The Matador (2005). In 1996, along with American film producer Beau St. Clair, he formed a Los Angeles-based production company called Irish DreamTime. He has also become known for his charitable work and environmental activism. In 2020, he was listed at No. 15 on The Irish Times’ list of greatest Irish film actors. In 1997, Brosnan received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his contributions to the film industry.
Daniel Wroughton Craig (born 2 March 1968) is an English actor. He is best known for playing James Bond in the eponymous film series, beginning with Casino Royale (2006), which brought him international fame. As of 2015, he has starred in three more instalments, with a fifth set to be released in late 2021. Other performances include his breakthrough role in the drama serial Our Friends in the North (1996), the historical drama film Munich (2005), the mystery thriller The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), and the mystery comedy Knives Out (2019).
After training at the National Youth Theatre and graduating from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1991, Craig began his career on stage. He made his film debut in the drama The Power of One (1992) and attracted attention with appearances in the historical television war drama Sharpe’s Eagle (1993), and the family film A Kid in King Arthur’s Court (1995). After appearing in Our Friends in the North, he gained roles in the biographical film Elizabeth (1998), the action film Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001), before appearing in the crime thrillers Road to Perdition (2002) and Layer Cake (2004).
Casino Royale, released in November 2006, was favourably received by critics and earned Craig a nomination for the BAFTA Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role. His starring role in Quantum of Solace (2008), Skyfall (2012), the series’ highest-grossing film, Spectre (2015), and No Time to Die (2021), has brought further international attention. He has starred in other films, such as the fantasy film The Golden Compass (2007), the historical drama Defiance (2008), the science fiction Western Cowboys & Aliens (2011), the heist film Logan Lucky (2017), and the mystery film Knives Out (2019). The last earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy.