Who were the 007 women standing with a clipboard?

Barbara Broccoli, co-boss of Eon Production, which produces 007 movies, gave an interview that generated a long story in the London Evening Standard. Many of Broccoli’s quotes have been chewed over. One passage caught our eye:

Barbara Broccoli

We can also credit Broccoli with tackling the sexism of 007. “Fortunately, the days of Bond girls standing around with a clipboard are over,” she says drily.

The writer, Liz Hoggard, doesn’t appear to have pressed Broccoli for specific examples of “clipobard” Bond girls. The Eon co-boss gives a pass in general to 007 heroines of the early movies: “Actually, when you read the early books, and watch the early films, the women were very interesting, exotic, complicated people. I always get into such an issue when I talk about these things. But they were pretty strong in their own right.” (emphasis added)

Broccoli specifically exempts Ursula Andress’s Honey Rider and Honor Blackman’s Pussy Galore. But that still begs the question — who were the “clipboard” Bond heroines?

For argument’s sake, let’s skip the first six Eon Bond films (five of which were relatively faithful adapations of Ian Fleming novels) and survey the possibilities. We’ll also skip the Casino Royale-Quantum of Solace reboot because Broccoli and her half-brother, Michael G. Wilson, remolded the franchise as they wished. Without further ado:

Tiffany Case (Jill St. John): Tiffany starts out Diamonds Are Forever as a tough, shrewd character but does engage in some slapstick before the 7th Eon 007 film ends.

Solitaire (Jane Seymour): Virginal with apparent supernatural powers (prior to having sex), Solitaire didn’t show a lot of self-defense skills.

Mary Goodnight (Britt Ekland): Played mostly for laughs in The Man With The Golden Gun.

Major Anya Amasova (Barbara Bach): Top agent of the KGB, the female lead of the Spy Loved Me was the first “Bond’s equal” character.

Holly Goodhead (Lois Chiles): An astronaut *and* a CIA agent. Another “Bond’s equal” character. Bond needs her to fly a Moonraker shuttle to Drax’s space station. As noted in a reader comment below, she was holding a clipboard. But she’s neither helpless nor ditzy.

Melina Havelock (Carole Bouquet): Young woman seeking revenge for her slain parents and carries a mean crossbow.

Octopussy (Maud Adams): Successful businesswoman and smuggler.

Stacey Sutton (Tanya Roberts): A professional woman (a geologist) but not always very self-aware (a noisy blimp sneaks up on her).

Kara Milovy (Maryam d’Abo):A talented musician but has a tendency to be manipulated by men.

Pam Bouvier (Carey Lowell): One-time CIA agent and skilled pilot.

Natalya Simonova (Izabella Scorupco): Russian computer programmer, Bond can’t defeat the former 006 without her help.

Wai Lin (Michelle Yeoh): Ace Chinese secret agent, another “Bond’s equal” character.

Dr. Christmas Jones (Denise Richards): Another professional woman (skilled in dealing with nuclear weapons), though many fans felt casting of Richards undercut that.

Jinx Johnson (Halle Berrry): Operative for the U.S. NSA, yet another “Bond’s equal” character.

007 press kits Part III: GoldenEye

GoldenEye marked James Bond’s movie return after a six-year absence and was do-or-die whether the film series could be successfully revived. The movie’s press kit may reflect that, because it’s flashier than at least some of its predecessors.

Previous Bond press kits had consisted of various press releases, each one separately stapled. GoldenEye’s included a 52-page booklet, the cover consisting of all the major cast and crew members. The first several pages inside included all the credits, including the same corporate logos seen in the end credits as well as the “James Bond Will Return” message.

The opening article in the booklet begins:

Times have changed. The Iron Curtain has fallen giving way to a world order, and the power plays of political agendas have been replaced by ruthless plots for profit. The war has changed…but the warriors remain the same.

“The name is Bond, James Bond.”

Ian Fleming’s James Bond is back! Pierce Brosnan takes on the role of legendary Agent 007, as the most successful film franchise in history once again explodes onto the big screen.”

The next article in the booklet says:

Though the 16 previous Bond films had pretty much run the gamut of titles from Ian Fleming’s novels and short stories, the filmmakers till wanted to pay homage to the man who created the legendary secret agent….In the six years since the last Bond adventure the world has undergone quite a bit of upheaval. However, producers Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli reflect that Bond’s popularity had already endured through the equally tumultuous ’60s, ’70s and ’80s.

“James Bond has alwasy been a contemporary character who lives for the present,” Wilson says. “He will always be dealing with the here and now.” Later, (pages 17 and 18) there’s a brief biography of star Pierce Brosnan that says the actor displayed ‘a perfectly-timed wit and raking sophistication that made him the overwhelming favorite to take over the role of James Bond. Though contractual obligations prevented him from taking the part at the time, a decade later there was nothing to stand between him and GOLDENEYE.”

Some previous 007 press kits only contained a few black-and-white prints of publicity stills. For GoldenEye, there were 14 color slides of photographs taken by Keith Hamshere during production. Brosnan is in 11 of them, either by himself or with other cast members (and in one case with director Martin Campbell). The three without the star consisted of shots of Izabella Scorupco, Famke Janssen and Campbell.

Finally, there was a secondary booklet, not as fancy as the main one. it was called The James Bond Dossier for GoldenEye. It consisted mostly of lists (films in the series, Bond women, Bond villains, accomplices for villains, supporting characters, etc.)