Ian who? Harry what?

OK, enough is enough. Clearly, if the OFFICIAL 007 TWITTER FEED IS ANY INDICATION, Eon Productions hasn’t the slightest intention of recognizing the contributions of Ian Fleming (who created James Bond) and Harry Saltzman (Eon’s co-founder).

ON THIS DAY IN BOND HISTORY: Some old dude none of us 007 Twitter writers recognize showed up on the Goldfinger set.

On March 23, the official 007 Twitter feed noted this:

ON THIS DAY IN BOND HISTORY: 1964, Guy Hamilton shot the GOLDFINGER scene in which Bond meets and seduces Jill Masterson. #007 #SKYFALL

There was something else, based on photographs taken at the time, going on: Ian Fleming showed up on the Goldfinger set to chat with star Sean Connery and supporting player Shirley Eaton. A photograph of the meeting was taken and it’s one of the most-reproduced images of the 007 author showing up during filming of Bond movies. If it’s not the last, it’s one of the last.

Evidently, the 007 Twitter writers (or writer) didn’t know that or have any idea who this Ian Fleming character was. Reader’s Digest version: He wrote some novels featuring a character named James Bond. Without the novels, there aren’t any James Bond movies.

This week the official 007 Twitter account filed its 142nd Tweet. Number of mentions of Ian Fleming? Zero. While we were at it, we checked (based on a tip from the James Bond Dossier) the number of mentions of Harry Saltzman, the partner of Albert R. Broccoli for the first nine Bond films. Number of Saltzman mentions? Also zero.

Put another way, if Albert R. Broccoli had never met Ian Fleming (who created the character) or Harry Saltzman (who actually held the option to buy the film rights), Broccoli would not have won the Irving Thalberg Award in 1982 (an honary Oscar given to a producer). Broccoli likely would not have gotten an obituary in The New York Times. (Albert R. Broccoli, Producer of Hell Below Zero, Dies at 87? Please.)

We’ve brought this up before, including THIS POST and THIS POST. We got feedback that Cubby Broccoli definitely appreciated Ian Fleming and his daughter, Barbara Broccoli, and stepson, Michael G. Wilson, do too. That, we’re told, also applies to Harry Saltzman.

Perhaps. Even if that’s the case, people in the employ of Wilson and Broccoli (whether they be direct employees or outside contractors) haven’t got a clue.

8 Responses

  1. From henceforth, I hereby designate March 23 as “Twit or Tweet”. I’ll get my hat.

  2. For the life of me I fail to see why you guys at the HMSS Weblog are being so precious about the 007 OFFICIAL TWITTER FEED. Wake up to the reality that apart from you (and probably me a long time ago) no one else out there could give a fig! The information is no doubt being fed to the ‘company’ (Accelerated Intelligence – I kid you not!) who ‘organise’ all this Internet 50th anniversary publicity tosh by either EON peons or someone at MGM who knows even less about their 50-year history of James Bond in the cinema than the peons do. Unfortunately the people employed lower down the ladder from the Bond producers should actually be on a ladder painting a wall, because as you so ably spotted, they are clueless. Don’t lose any sleep over it lads, it isn’t keeping Ian Fleming and Harry Saltzman, or Cubby Broccoli awake at nights – or me! ;O)

  3. I gather you haven’t been invited to work on any official projects in this year 50th anniversary year then, Graham? At least you won’t be now.

  4. I’m long past all that ‘official’ nonsense. Don’t want it. Don’t need it. Don’t care. Life is far too short to be dealing with idiots.

  5. It does amaze me that hardly anything has been mentioned about Skyfall and the 50th anniversary. I’m sure the party will be in full swing by early October, but I digress.

  6. @Graham: Nobody is losing sleep over this. The winners (in this case, the Wilson-Broccoli clan) get to write the history (in this case the official 007 Twitter feed). That’s the way of the world. Meanwhile, to Stuart’s point, in the U.S. at least, other than the hard-core, aging Bond fans, nobody seems to really care about this being the 50th anniversary of the Bond film series. Both Eon and a large part of the fan base seem to think it’s still 1965 and 007 is still the biggest pop-culture thing going. It isn’t. A half century is an impressive feat. But a lot of 007 fans assume it’s still No. 1 and always will be. Point out that the Harry Potter series has a higher box-office gross? 007 fans will start to complain why that’s an unfair comparison. Whatever.

  7. “Nobody is losing sleep over this.”

    You could have fooled me!

    “History is always written by the winners. When two cultures clash, the loser is obliterated, and the winner writes the history books-books which glorify their own cause and disparage the conquered foe. As Napoleon once said, ‘What is history, but a fable agreed upon?”
    ― Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code

    However, Thunderball’s original 1965 domestic gross box-office figure of $63,595,658 adjusted for 2012 ticket price inflation comes out at $585,684,000.

    Take a look at the figures for Harry Potter over at:


    Whatever indeed…

  8. @Graham: The adjusted/unadjusted box office argument is a doubled-edge sword for 007. Another way of putting it is that 007’s best days are behind him.

    And by the way, we’re quite familiar with the stats you describe:


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