Sean Connery was the first of six actors to play James Bond. But whoever took the part, Bond the agent was consistent: He loved beautiful women and fast cars, like this Aston Martin. In the later film "Golden Eye," however, he drove a German-made BMW Z3. In fact, James Bond often encountered Germans, including a few Bond girls and the most famous of the villains.
The first Bond film, "Dr. No," was released on October 5, 1962. The James Bond character was created by writer Ian Flemming. The stories had been filmed before, but it wasn't until the production company Eon bought the movie rights that it became a box-office hit. Bikini-clad German-Swiss actress Ursula Andress rose to fame with her appearance as Honey Ryder in "Dr. No."
German cinema heavyweight Gerd Fröbe portrayed a villain who wanted to destroy the gold reserves in the US so that his own gold would be worth more. "Goldfinger" from 1964 became a Bond classic. One of the most recited lines: "Do you expect me to talk, Goldfinger?" - "No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die." Fröbe's lines were voiced over after the filming because his English wasn't up to scratch.
Karin Dor was the second German Bond Girl. She played the red-haired agent Helga Brandt in "You Only Live Twice" (1967). Brandt was an accomplice of the villain Blofeld, who would make many more appearances in future Bond films. Brandt, on the other hand, died a spectacular death when she fell into Blofeld's piranha tank and was eaten alive.
In "The Spy Who Loved Me" from 1977, the crazy Karl Stromberg, played by Curd Jürgens, planned to create his own civilization and destroy the rest of the world with nuclear bombs. James Bond, played here by Roger Moore, had the job of stopping him - which, of course, he did. At 1.93 meters (6 feet, 4 inches), Curd Jürgens was considered one of Germany's most attractive men at the time.
In "The Living Daylights" from 1987, Timothy Dalton took on the coveted role of James Bond. German actor Andreas Wisniewski played Necros, the right-hand man of a Russian defector. The killer used curious weapons to take down his victims - including Walkman headphones. Wisniewski impressed Hollywood so much with his performance that he was cast a year later as a German terrorist in "Die Hard."
Even after the Cold War was over, East-West tensions remained in the foreground. In the 1995 film "GoldenEye," a Russian general stole a powerful weapons system that was capable of hijacking other computer systems. German actor Gottfried John gained international fame with the role. It was the first film with the smart Irish actor Pierce Brosnan in the lead.
Götz Otto played the bad guy Stamper in "Tomorrow Never Dies" (1997). Once again, Bond was obliged to prevent World War Three. The most powerful media mogul that the world had ever seen wanted to start a war to increase newspaper sales. Stamper, a German henchman, did his dirty work. But his screen life was limited to just one Bond film: He was blown up.
Chiseled, taciturn and cool, Daniel Craig is the most recent 007. His latest Bond film, "Skyfall," opens in cinemas at the end of October, featuring a theme song by Adele. This time, there are no German Bond girls, no German cars and no German henchmen. Instead, a bunch of good old pyrotechnics. Only one car suits the toughest Bond of all time - a very British Aston Martin.
James Bond is turning 50. In his long career as a secret agent, he has come up against a number of bad guys. The most famous came from Germany.