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  15 November 2008  

An auction of unique James Bond memorabilia at CHRISTIE'S

CHRISTIE'S South Kensington- Popular Culture & Entertainment - December 4, 2008

As Bond fever once again grips the nation, Christie’s South Kensington introduces an enviable selection of Bond memorabilia designed to rekindle a very British love affair with the nation’s favourite undercover agent, bringing together a collection of sought-after Bond posters, props, scripts and replicas.

Of particular interest to Bond fans are lots #85 and #86 from the estate of Kevin McClory, which include one-of-a-kind items relating to Thunderball (1965), and his unrealised Warhead project co-authored with Len Deighton and Sean Connery which eventually made it to the screen in 1983 as Never Say Never Again.


Kevin McClory's Thunderball shooting script Kevin McClory's Thunderball shooting script Thunderball storyboards
Kevin McClory's Thunderball notebooks Kevin McClory's notebooks from Thunderball Kevin McClory's notebooks

ABOVE: LOT #85 - Kevin McClory's shooting script for Thunderball and corresponding storyboard notebook, the script cover with typescript label, numbered 4, titled THUNDERBALL (Shooting Script) 30th November 1964, 138pp. of mimeographed typescript, original blue paper covers, this script with several differences to the final version; accompanied by a spiral bound notebook, signed on the cover in red felt pen Kevin McClory, containing 52 printed storyboards titled Vulcan "Ditching" & Underwater Sequences, each labelled in black felt pen in an unidentified hand, pasted in pairs onto 26 separate pages, each – 3 X 6½in. (7.7 X 16.5cm.), the last page and inside back cover inscribed in blue ballpoint pen in an unidentified hand with various production details including $100,000 for charter...Speak to McClory about Hidrofoil...money in Nassau...Lock up 2 man sub... original buff paper covers.  Sold for £10,000 ($14,690)

Warhead Script Kevin McClory's Warhead script Sean Connery, Len Deighton and Kevin McClory
Never Say Never Again storyboards Never Say Never Again storyboards Warhead by Sean Connery, Len Deighton and Kevin McClory

ABOVE: LOT #86 - Kevin McClory's script for Warhead, an unmade James Bond project, the script entitled "Warhead" Based on "JAMES BOND OF THE SECRET SERVICE" by Ian Fleming, Kevin McClory, Jack Whittingham, giving further details on the title page of the screenplay's authors Len Deighton, Sean Connery and Kevin McClory, production details including © Branwell Film Productions, March 21, 1976... and FIRST DRAFT 6 September 1978..., 137pp. mimeographed typescript, various characters in the cast list include the hero James Bond and Bond girls: Justine Lovesit and Fatima Blush, other Bond regulars include: Ernst Stavros Blofeld, Felix Leiter, Moneypenny, M and Q, original blue paper covers; accompanied by a black and white photograph of the three authors of the screenplay, Connery, Deighton and McClory at the latter's home in Ireland, taken during their collaboration on this project [printed later] – 8 X 10in. (20.4 X 25.5cm.); and Kevin McClory's shooting script for Never Say Never Again, 119pp. of mimeographed typescript, variously dated from 7.9.82 to 23.9.82; 123pp. of mimeographed storyboards including many dramatic underwater sequences including shipwreck shark attacks on Bond, the duel between Bond and Largo and the assassination of Largo by Domino, the pages contained in a maroon vinyl ring binder. Sold for £ £46,850 ($68,823)


Kevin McClory, in his famous court case against Ian Fleming for plagiarism in 1963, won the film and television rights to Thunderball. He was also assigned the copyright in the film scripts and the right to use the character of James Bond in any scripts or film of Thunderball. In 1975 McClory, accompanied by Sean Connery, travelled to New York in order to scout locations for their new 007 project then entitled James Bond of the Secret Service. The script, co-written by McClory, Sean Connery and Len Deighton (thriller writer and creator of the Harry Palmer character immortalised on screen by Michael Caine) included scenes inside and outside the Statue of Liberty, where the villainous SPECTRE has a secret base from where they launch robotic sharks to keep away any prying intruders i.e. Bond. The shot of Connery with the Twin Towers behind him (below right) is rather ironic in hindsight, as SPECTRE was an international terrorist organisation (SPecial Executive for Counterintelligence Terrorism Revenge and Extortion).

Sean Connery in New York 1975
Statue of Liberty - proposed location for James Bond of the Secret Service/Warhead Sean Connery with the Twin Towers in background - New York 1975
Sean Connery at the Statue of Liberty, New York 1975 Sean Connery inside the Statue of Liberty scouting locations for James Bond of the Secret Service
Sean Connery James Bond of the Secret Service Sean Connery scouting locations in New York 1975


Never Say Never Again FACT FILE