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From the Archive
007 MAGAZINE
Issue #9 1981
Issue #10 1982

 

 

The George Lazenby Interview

George Lazenby 1981

Have you communicated with Broccoli and Saltzman since the film?
Saltzman contacted me here in L.A. in 1977. I did some show called Cover Girls. He called me, and my wife answered the phone and said "Harry Saltzman wants you to call him at the Beverley Willshire Hotel", and I called up and he was there, and he said "I saw you last night in Cover Girls, I just came in from a show and you've come a long way as an actor. I'd like to get together with you and talk about a picture". He had a space picture called Micronauts and wanted Michael Caine and myself to do it together.

Peter Hunt & Harry Saltzman/George Lazenby & Michael Caine

ABOVE: (left) Director Peter Hunt with producer Harry Saltzman have lunch during the filming of On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) at Piz Gloria. (right ) George Lazenby with actor Michael Caine in 1969.

Have you had any professional training since OHMSS?
Yeah, I went to acting school in L.A. for three years, just for film so I wouldn't feel out of it if I got with a top notch shooter. I've worked with some fine actors who you have never heard of, and you probably never will, who were in this school permanently. Yet they never get the break.

What films have you been doing recently?
The last thing I did was a film called The Lost Hero in Italy, it finished in June, and it's a load of rubbish, if you'll excuse the expression.

You were in Saint Jack.
Yeah, just briefly, see I was doing Hawaii 5-0 in Singapore and they were making that, so I went over and played an American for the first time.

You had a part in B.J. and the Bear didn't you?
Yeah, a short quick one that. TV that's how you make your living in this city.

I've heard Cubby Broccoli asked you not to come to the premiere in a beard and long hair?
Yes, prior to coming. He asked me not to come with a beard.

What happened?
I turned up with a beard. It was my way of saying "I'm myself - I'm not James Bond" as it were.

George Lazenby at the OHMSS premiere December 1969

ABOVE: (left) George Lazenby arrives at London's Heathrow airport for the World Premiere of On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) (top right) Lazenby with co-star Diana Rigg [director Peter Hunt looks on] at the premiere. (bottom right) Lazenby brought actress Polly Williams as his guest to the premiere of On Her Majesty's Secret Service held at the Odeon Leicester Square on December 18, 1969.

That was the way Sean Connery felt wasn't it?
Yes, but he was a lot smarter than I was. He waited till he had a lot of money, before he did it. I did it without the money which wasn't very clever. I figured I'd get it later, with all the publicity. You can't just disappear. But you can, as I did.

You were in Kentucky Fried Movie. Would you like to do more comedy?
I'd love to. In fact at acting school, a teacher said my forte would be Cary Grant type comedy, yeah, I love comedy.

How about any stage work?
Yeah, I love it, but I figured I'd be no good at it. Because I'd probably get bored, you know, the same thing every night. Some actors love it.

Connery has also said he'd like to get into stage. Have you met Sean Connery?
Just once, you know we said "Hi!", we didn't throw punches at each other.

Connery was quoted in a newspaper after Broccoli had written a letter about you. The following week Connery's quote said, "I've known George Lazenby for a long time and he's not hard to get along with, but I can't say the same about Broccoli".
Yes, I heard about that. It was very nice. Someone sent me a clipping from the Daily Express.

Behind-the-scenes in Portugal for the pre-title sequence of OHMSS

ABOVE: Guincho Beach, Portugal. The pre-credit sequence was shot at the end of production of On Her Majesty's Secret Service in May 1969. Producer Albert R. Broccoli visited the location (top left and right) and watched as director Peter Hunt (bottom left) carefully orchestrated George Lazenby's introduction as James Bond 007.

How did they slide you across the ice when you land at Piz Gloria?
With a very thin wire cable which was just strong enough to pull a human being across the ice without snapping and they lined you up and let you shoot away.

Whose idea was it to tack in the line "This never happened to the other fella"?
That was Peter Hunt.

What happened was I dropped this along the line and Peter Hunt picked up on it. It wasn't my idea to put it in the film. It was Peter's idea to put it in the film. You see that was my attitude, all the way through, I used to say "this never happened to the other fella", I used to say that to Peter about my expenses and everything, and the crew said "he was always saying that so drop it in there". So it was Peter Hunt's idea, but it was my line. The meaning was that she's gone (Diana Rigg) and he would have got her (Sean Connery). I wish I could do that line better now because when I was so self-concious and they were saying "do you really want to do this?", I mean I thought they were trying to get away from it. Do you want the Australian bit, it was kinda foreign to me, to do that, it was comedy, it wasn't what I was used to.

To end the interview could you say your opening line?
"Good morning. My name is Bond, James Bond..."

George Lazenby - My name is Bond, James Bond
 

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George Lazenby poses with a copy of 007 MAGAZINE while Sylvana Henriques looks on.

Piz Gloria July 2015  - George Lazenby poses with a copy of 007 MAGAZINE while Sylvana Henriques looks on.

007 MAGAZINE On Her Majesty's Secret Service 76-page special


The 007 MAGAZINE On Her Majesty’s Secret Service 76-page special publication was originally published as two separate 36-page issues in the 007 MAGAZINE ARCHIVE FILES series in 2010, (and out of print and unavailable since 2011) this latest edition features both complete issues together in one publication with a new cover and inside front and back covers.

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