What's the most dangerous stunt performed by the actor in a Bond movie?

Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

There is a lot of talk of actors doing their own stunts in movies these days, especially about Tom Cruise. Bond movies are famous for their stunts, but usually it's done by stuntmen. What is the most impressive and dangerous done by the actor (not necesserily the one playing Bond) in the Bond series? Dalton on top of the car in the TLD PTS? Connery dodging the helicopter in FRWL? Craig jumping on to the bus in QoS? I'm aware the actors didn't do everything, but they did a lot. There must be other examples.

What's your opinion?


  • PPK 7.65mmPPK 7.65mm Saratoga Springs NY USAPosts: 1,157MI6 Agent

    I would say Connery dodging the helicopter in FRWL since the pilot came a lot closer than what he intended to do on one take. Connery could have been seriously injured or worse when he had this close encounter.

  • Napoleon PluralNapoleon Plural LondonPosts: 9,722MI6 Agent

    Nothing leaps to mind, I have to say. Connery himself walked along a speeding train in The First Great Train Robbery, which was going a lot faster than he'd been informed and in contrast to Moore in Octopussy, but I don't think he was ready to put himself out for Cubby and Harry. Aside from his helicopter dodging - and weren't some of those near misses down to Bob Simmons the stuntman? - there wasn't much call for any great stunts in the first three but Connery did get hurt by Harold 'Oddjob" Sakato and walked off set. Then we have Connery's reaction to a shark coming out of the tunnel in Thunderball - he'd been assured they were all gone - I have to admit the fact the shark just wafted by him does somewhat undermine rumours of their savage predatory nature, perhaps he was on his way to party or something - all the same the actor didn't deliberately put himself in harm's way.

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    Roger Moore 1927-2017
  • AugustWalkerAugustWalker Posts: 832MI6 Agent

    Undoubtedly Roger Moore‘s most dangerous stunt….

    The name is Walker by the way.

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  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

    It was just a question of time before someone brought that traumatic scene. 😂😂

  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 2,072MI6 Agent

    I think, in all seriousness, the scene on TSWLM where Stromberg tries to shoot Bond with a harpoon. The explosives in the chair were too powerful for the stunt, and Moore, who had been sitting on the chair, narrowly avoided a burnt bottom.

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

    I don't think he completely avoided a burnt bottom. I'm not entirely sure a stunt that became dangerous because the stunt people miscalculated counts.

    I have a follow-up question to everyone: do you think it's important to find an actor who's willing and able to do many of his stunts himself for Bond7?

  • The Red KindThe Red Kind EnglandPosts: 2,636MI6 Agent

    Yes, I think he did suffer some minor burns. Could have been forever holding his piece had it been any worse.

    I think it's does add some credibility where the actor does some of his own stunt work, but I think alla Tom Cruise hanging off planes is perhaps going too far.

    "Any of the opposition around..?"
  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

    You're probably right. Mission Impossible movies are very good, but the story and character are much less important than finding new stunts for Cruise to do. I like Dalton's attitude better: Do enough stunts to make the action belivable, but acting, character and plot are more important. There are more options than what Cruise is doing and on the other side what Moore did.

  • The Red KindThe Red Kind EnglandPosts: 2,636MI6 Agent

    Yes. I think Dalton's Land Rover exploits are about the right level.

    "Any of the opposition around..?"
  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 3,394MI6 Agent

    twofour said:

    I'm not entirely sure a stunt that became dangerous because the stunt people miscalculated counts.

    its your thread, you make the definition!

    I do think Connery brushing up against a real shark was hella-dangerous, that shark just looks tame because Connery is so damn tough (he once punched out a gangster in real life!). It was also a factor in Connery quitting the series, so it was dangerous for Cubby n Harry to allow that to happen.

    I've seen Tom Cruise in other films. I'm not sure he could get by on just his acting.

  • The Domino EffectThe Domino Effect Posts: 3,551MI6 Agent

    Tom Cruise is a movie star, not an actor (to paraphrase "My Favourite Year") 😁!

    That said, he was good in Born on the Fourth of July and Rain Man. I had the (surprising) pleasure of working with him for two days many years ago and was hugely impressed by his professionalism and perfectionism. He is 100% committed to his craft, sometimes to the exasperation of his director. If actors with more talent than him were half as dedicated to their work as he is, they would be far better.

    So yes, CP, you are correct, I think he'd struggle to do a serious dramatic role, but few actors (especially mega-stars) would try harder to make it work.

  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 3,394MI6 Agent

    @The Domino Effect I didnt know you hung out with movie stars in real life!

    my apologies to Mr Cruise, tell him I was just joking. I remember seeing him in Magnolia, an ensemble film alongside more serious actorly types like Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and he was pretty good. His part was as an arrogant movie star, but he made that character look like a terrible person despite the character not being that far removed from his own real life self, so kudos to him for daring to risk his own image in such a way. Hopefully in real life he's nicer to journalists.

    maybe its specifically in the Mission: Impossible movies he barely seems to be showing character. I've been watching the old teevee series, and Martin Landau and Barbara Bain were playing it cold and emotionless back in their day too (though you can see the glimpses of fear or doubt in their eyes). Seems to be part of the concept of the show.

  • The Domino EffectThe Domino Effect Posts: 3,551MI6 Agent

    It's okay CP, I told Tom I was friends with Caractacus Potts!

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

    Being TS gives me dictatorial powers! Why didn't anyone tell me before? 😂

    Seriously I just offered my opinion. Feel free to give yours.

  • Napoleon PluralNapoleon Plural LondonPosts: 9,722MI6 Agent

    I love the commitment Cruise gives to his action scenes/stunts and his maintenance of his physique. It reminds me of looking forward to the new James Bond movie in the 70s/80s and seeing an amazing stunt tin the trailer. That said, his MI movies lack class really, they seem a bit ersatz. Something is lacking, though the first one was great and better than GoldenEye imo. Some great stuff there thanks to de Palma of course.

    Moore joked about how they gave him the action scenes early in the film so they could kill him and claim the insurance.

    I still don't know how he got from the Jeep to the horse box in the OP pre-credits, it looks real to me and not that easy. Not a stunt as such but a bit dangerous if he fell.

    Moore had an accident with his speedboats in LALD didn't he? It's in his diaries. Not intentional of course, I think something jammed.

    "This is where we leave you Mr Bond."

    Roger Moore 1927-2017
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 2,072MI6 Agent

    Judging by the amount of alcohol he consumed in the evenings, I expect he was still drunk sailing. I am amazed anyone ever stood upright in LALD after reading Sir Roger's diary.

  • ManxmanManxman Posts: 121MI6 Agent

    None of the stunts performed by the Bond actors were actually that dangerous.

    To see truly dangerous stunts, watch "Some Mothers Do 'Ave 'Em" (British seventies slapstick sitcom, for readers not from the UK).

    The actor Michael Crawford did all the stunts for real, which included roller-skating under a moving lorry and riding a motorbike side-saddle. The one that nearly killed him was being suspended over the edge of a window cleaner's cradle, about 20 floors up from the ground. The cradle became stuck in position and Crawford was left hanging there for ages.

  • Number24Number24 NorwayPosts: 19,992MI6 Agent

    Jackie Chan and Buster keaton are two other examples. I've also heard there is also a short Scientologist who does his own stunts .......

  • The Red KindThe Red Kind EnglandPosts: 2,636MI6 Agent
    "Any of the opposition around..?"
  • hehadlotsofgutshehadlotsofguts Durham England Posts: 2,095MI6 Agent

    Didn't George Lazenby try do do his own skiing? He ended up with a broken arm because of it.

    That's why when Bond(as Sir Hilary Bray) is taken to the Alpine room, Gunther takes off his coat, as George couldn't do it himself.

    Sean did some of his own stunts in Thunderball, when Bond escapes Palmyra and he swims through the tunnel and has a near miss with a shark!

    There was a glass pane seperating Sean and the shark.

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  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,775MI6 Agent
    edited June 27

    I think that's a pretty good shout- the problem with a helicopter is there's nothing to stop it accidentally coming a little lower. I certainly wouldn't want to do that, whereas I think if I had to hang on to the top of a Land Rover (and most probably tied on) it wouldn't be too bad as long as it were being driven carefully.

    Sometimes I think Roger dangling from the hanglider in LALD looks a little risky- I know the glider is on a crane, but they're quite close to a cliff edge aren't they? A big gust of wind...

    @Napoleon Plural is right to mention the First Great Train Robbery- I watched that again last year and what Connery is doing on that train is pretty shocking; no way I'd be up there! 😄

    Is it Connery on top of the lift in DAF? It does look like him. I guess he had a harness on but it's still a good stunt.

    Sometimes the most dangerous stunts aren't even very noticeable. In Billion Dollar Brain, Michael Caine hops onto the footplate of a (fairly slow moving) Finnish train, which looks like nothing, but if he'd slipped on an icy metal step he could have been under the train. Likewise the film ends with a scene where he hops between floating chunks of ice to talk to someone. It's not presented as an act of daring in the film, but if the ice had rocked unexpectedly he'd have been in the icy water, possibly under the ice. Stupidly dangerous! 😅

    I think the Bond actors were kept out of danger most of the time (I guess you could say that the amount of Thames water Brosnan drank in the TWINE boat scene was probably the most dangerous thing any of them did!) so it's probably not a case of most dangerous but maybe most impressive.. ? And for me I'd probably say that the rooftop stuff in QoS that Craig did is up there with the most impressive.

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