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George Lazenby Biography, Wiki, Age, Career, Net Worth | Who Is James Bond Actor George Lazenby? Bio, Wiki

Who is George Lazenby?

George Lazenby, born 5 September 1939, is an Australian actor and former model. He was the second actor to portray fictional British secret agent James Bond in the Eon Productions film series, playing the character in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969).

Having appeared in only one film, Lazenby’s tenure as Bond was the shortest among the actors in the series. He was also the youngest actor cast as Bond, at age 29, and the only born outside of the British Isles.

George Lazenby Biography, Wiki

George Lazenby (full name – George Robert Lazenby) was born September 5, 1939, in Goulburn, New South Wales, Australia, to Sheila Joan (Bodel) and George Edward Lazenby.

He moved to London, England in 1964, after serving in the Australian Army. Before becoming an actor, he worked as an auto mechanic, used car salesman, prestige car salesman, and as a male model, in London, England. In 1968, Lazenby was cast as “James Bond”, despite his only previous acting experience being in commercials, and his only film appearance being a bit-part in a 1965 Italian-made Bond spoof.

George Lazenby won the role based on a screen-test fight scene, the strength of his interviews, fight skills and audition footage. A chance encounter with Bond series producer Albert R. Broccoli in a hair salon in 1966, in London, had given Lazenby his first shot at getting the role.

Broccoli had made a mental note to remember Lazenby as a possible candidate at the time when he thought Lazenby looked like a Bond. The lengths Lazenby went to to get the role included spending his last pounds on acquiring a tailor-made suit from Sean Connery’s tailor, which was originally made for Connery, along with purchasing a very Bondish-looking Rolex watch.

George Lazenby quit the role of Bond right before the premiere of his only film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969), citing he would get other acting roles, and that his Bond contract, which was fourteen pages thick, was too demanding on him.

BornGeorge Robert Lazenby
5 September 1939 (age 82)
Goulburn, New South Wales, Australia
NationalityAustralian
OccupationActor, martial artist, model
Years active1965–2003, 2012–present
Known forJames Bond in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service
Spouse(s)Christina Gannett​​(m. 1971; div. 1995)​
Pam Shriver​​(m. 2002; div. 2011)​
Children5

Geroge Lazenby Career

George Lazenby’s first serious acting role was as James Bond in the film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Lazenby is the second official actor to portray the British secret agent. It was rumored that Lazenby had been “difficult to work with” in this project.

According to Lazenby, however, the difficulties were caused by director Peter R. Hunt, who apparently refused to talk directly to him—and this, in turn, was caused by Lazenby (unaware of studio politics or Hunt’s sensibilities) passing on a request for Hunt’s friends to clear a set before filming.

During the film’s production, Lazenby’s manager, Ronan O’Rahilly, talked him into refusing a seven-movie contract on the grounds that the Bond character was out of touch with the times. Unsurprisingly, Lazenby describes this as the biggest mistake of his life.

The reception of Lazenby’s performance often varies greatly, as some view him to be the quintessential James Bond while some view him as the worst of the actors to play 007. Likewise, feelings about the film usually vary greatly as well.

From a commercial perspective On Her Majesty’s Secret Service paled in comparison to the previous Bond film You Only Live Twice and the later Diamonds Are Forever (both featuring Connery as Bond); this has been partly attributed to a poor publicity campaign.

Critical response to On Her Majesty’s Secret Service remains sharply divided. Many fans, perhaps especially fans of Fleming’s original novels, regard it as one of the best Bond films. Other critics name it as one of the lesser Bond films. Nevertheless, it is widely considered one of the best and most faithful adaptations of Ian Fleming’s original novels.

Lazenby has portrayed Bond several times over the years in numerous parodies and unofficial 007 roles, most notably the 1983 TV movie The Return of the Man from U.N.C.L.E. and an episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, titled “Diamonds Aren’t Forever”.

George Lazenby’s first serious acting role was as James Bond in the film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969). Lazenby is the second official actor to portray the British secret agent. It was rumored that Lazenby had been “difficult to work with” in this project.

According to Lazenby, however, the difficulties were caused by director Peter R. Hunt, who apparently refused to talk directly to him—and this, in turn, was caused by Lazenby (unaware of studio politics or Hunt’s sensibilities) passing on a request for Hunt’s friends to clear a set before filming.

During the film’s production, Lazenby’s manager, Ronan O’Rahilly, talked him into refusing a seven-movie contract on the grounds that the Bond character was out of touch with the times. Unsurprisingly, Lazenby describes this as the biggest mistake of his life.

The reception of Lazenby’s performance often varies greatly, as some view him to be the quintessential James Bond while some view him as the worst of the actors to play 007.

Likewise, feelings about the film usually vary greatly as well. From a commercial perspective On Her Majesty’s Secret Service paled in comparison to the previous Bond film You Only Live Twice and the later Diamonds Are Forever (both featuring Connery as Bond); this has been partly attributed to a poor publicity campaign.

Critical response to On Her Majesty’s Secret Service remains sharply divided. Many fans, perhaps especially fans of Fleming’s original novels, regard it as one of the best Bond films. Other critics name it as one of the lesser Bond films. Nevertheless, it is widely considered one of the best and most faithful adaptations of Ian Fleming’s original novels.

Lazenby has portrayed Bond several times over the years in numerous parodies and unofficial 007 roles, most notably the 1983 TV movie The Return of the Man from U.N.C.L.E. and an episode of Alfred Hitchcock Presents, titled “Diamonds Aren’t Forever”.

George Lazenby Post Bond Career

For a time there was some talk Lazenby would appear in a western, Deakin. He talked to the press about his use of LSD and marijuana and was involved in a well-publicized incident helping a friend of his who was arrested in Germany. He grew his hair and a mustache and talked about rejecting the “trappings of materialism”.

Lazenby made another film a year after On Her Majesty’s Secret Service – Universal Soldier (1971), which he helped write. He said the movie was “anti-guns and anti-Bond… a [comedy] with no plot. It is really just a series of happenings that keep the audience entertained. This is the kind of film which is coming out in Europe now.”

“After the Bond fiasco nobody would touch me”, admitted Lazenby. “Harry Saltzman had always said, ‘If you don’t do another Bond you’ll wind up doing spaghetti westerns in Italy. But I couldn’t even get one of those. My agent couldn’t believe it. But the word was out – I was ‘difficult’.”

Lazenby next appeared in the 1972 Italian film Who Saw Her Die? opposite Anita Strindberg, a performance for which he lost 35 pounds and received positive reviews. He spent the next 15 months sailing around the world with Chrissie Townson which ended when she became pregnant with their first child, prompting Lazenby to settle down and try to re-activate his career as an actor.

In February 1973, he revealed that he had spent all of the money he had earned from playing Bond, had experienced two nervous breakdowns, and had become an alcoholic. He said if he had not left the role he would have been “locked up by now… You need mental conditioning to play Bond”, he added. “I burnt some bridges behind me, and it was fun, really. I’m sort of glad I did it and I know I won’t have to do it again. I can look back and laugh because I didn’t hurt anyone — except myself.”

Lazenby played a role in the BBC’s Play For Today series in 1973, starring in Roger Smith’s The Operation. He was meant to follow it with an Anglo-Italian western made in Turkey, followed by a film about rioting students in pre-Castro Cuba, but neither was made.

Some Lesser Known Facts About George Lazenby

  • Was the highest paid male model in Europe prior to playing James Bond.
  • Except for TV commercials, he had no previous acting experience when he was cast as James Bond.
  • Zachary, his son with Christina Gannett, died of brain cancer when he was 20 years old in 1994.
  • Lazenby broke a stuntman’s nose during a Bond fight screen test, and it was this physical strength that finalized his selection as Bond.
  • Was the #1 male fashion model in the world from 1964 to 1968.
  • Lazenby has ridden his various motorcycles across the United States, on three different occasions.
  • He was the youngest actor to play James Bond, being 30 when On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969) was released.
  • He is a big fan of Australian tennis star Lleyton Hewitt.
  • He was supposed to have dinner with Bruce Lee the night that Lee died. He attended Lee’s funeral service.
  • He has a black belt in karate.
  • His surname is pronounced “Lay-ZIN-bee”.
  • Born on exactly the same date as William Devane (of Knots Landing (1979) fame).
  • He holds Black Belts Shotokan-Ryu Karate and Judo.
  • With the death of actor Sean Connery, October 31st 2020, Lazenby is now the earliest and oldest living actor who has portrayed James Bond.

George Lazenby FAQ’s

Who is George Lazenby?

George Lazenby, born 5 September 1939, is an Australian actor and former model. He was the second actor to portray fictional British secret agent James Bond in the Eon Productions film series, playing the character in On Her Majesty’s Secret Service (1969).

What is George Lazenby famous for?

Geroge Lazenby is famous for playing the role of James Bond.

What is George Lazenby age?

Currently, George Lazenby is 82 years old.

 

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