1982: Bond’s big Oscar moment

This week, some James Bond fans took to social media to complain about a lack of Oscar nominations for No Time to Die. The movie was nominated for sound, best song and visual effects.

As it turns out, this is the 40th anniversary of Bond’s biggest Oscar moment, the night the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences acknowledged the impact of the 007 film series.

It was at the 1982 Oscar show that Eon Productions co-founder Albert R. Broccoli received the Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, which recognizes a producer’s career achievements.

Roger Moore, in the midst of his seven-film run as Bond, was brought in to introduce Broccoli. The actor’s presence was noted at the start of the telecast. (“Mr. Roger Moore, maybe the handsomest man alive, the incarnation of James Bond, a presenter of a special award this evening.”)

For Your Eyes Only was a best song nominee. It became the centerpiece of an elaborate musical number. While Sheena Easton performed the song, dancers did a Moonraker-themed mini-adventure. Richard Kiel and Harold Sakata were on hand, dressed as Jaws and Oddjob respectively.

On top of all that, Bill Conti was the show’s musical director. He dropped in bits from his score from For Your Eyes Only. As it happened, For Your Eyes Only didn’t win the best song award.

The big moment was when Broccoli received the Thalberg. He appeared after an introduction by Moore and a collection of clips from Eon’s first dozen Bond films.

Broccoli delivered a gracious speech. He acknowledged two former partners, Irving Allen and Harry Saltzman, the latter Eon’s other co-founder. He also referenced Arthur Krim, the head of United Artists, who provided to go-ahead to start the Bond film series.

“This is an important moment in my life,” Broccoli said. “I feel a great sense of accomplishment, not only for myself but all of my colleagues with whom I’ve worked over the years.”

He concluded by calling himself as a “farm boy from Long Island” (a reference to his humble beginnings) who had achieved a dream.

Behind the scenes, Broccoli had a lot going on. He was performing pre-production work on Octopussy, knowing there would be a competing Bond movie, Never Say Never Again.

What’s more, Broccoli’s stepson, Michael G. Wilson, was already a major lieutenant of the producer. He would soon be joined by his daughter, Barbara Broccoli. Octopussy would provide her first on-screen credit.

Bond films typically don’t get a lot of nominations for Oscars, much less wins. But for this one night, Bond was the big attraction for the Oscars.