James Bond and Terry O’Neill fit together like a Walther PPK nestled in a shoulder holster underneath a tailored tuxedo. The legendary photographer, who died in November, had a decades-old relationship with 007 that started when he was invited to shoot Sean Connery on the 1964 movie Goldfinger. Numerous set visits followed, during which the famously charming O’Neill built up a rapport with Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig to gain remarkable access and capture the actors during relaxed moments.
In a new book containing more than 150 photographs, Bond: Photographed by Terry O'Neill, The Definitive Collection, film writer James Clarke documents O’Neill’s work with the Bond franchise and adds fresh input from Jane Seymour (Solitaire in Live and Let Die), George Lazenby (On Her Majesty's Secret Service), Robert Wade and Neal Purvis (writers of seven Bond films including Skyfall, Spectre and No Time To Die) and notes from O’Neill himself.
EDGAR asked James Clarke why O’Neill was so loved. “There are two answers to that,” he replied. "One is that his manner and way of engaging his subjects was so inviting and easygoing and understated. Second, the images themselves are so often charged with a sense of immediacy and humour and playfulness.” He added, “This book is a celebration of his legacy and importance to how the image of Bond has found such a place, not just in film culture but the wider popular culture. That’s quite a special achievement.”