James Bond (Pierce Brosnan)
James Bond played by Pierce Brosnan
Born in Navan, County Meath, Ireland on 16th May 1953
Starred In Goldeneye (1995), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997), The World Is Not Enough (1999) and Die Another Day (2002)
Pierce Brosnan was originally considered to play the part of Bond in 1986, after Roger Moore had announced his departure at the end of A View To A Kill. However due to work commitments Brosnan was unable to get out of the contract. After the passing away of his wife Cassandra Harris (who incidentally played Countess Lisl in For Your Eyes Only) in late 1991, Brosnan took a break from filming for a while. After the legal wrangling between MGM and EON had ended after 5 years, Timothy Dalton decided he no longer wanted to continue. Consequently this left the role open for Brosnan, who officially accepted in 1994.
In 1995 the Bond phenomenon was quite unstable after the 6-year gap, with a waiving interest in the series. Fans need not have worried however, when Brosnan made an explosive début appearance in Goldeneye. The film would go on to become the most successful Bond film since Moonraker 16 years earlier. Contracted to star in three more films, with a fourth as an option, Tomorrow Never Dies and The World Is Not Enough lead to similar box office success.
The release of Die Another Day however brought out mixed fortunes. While the film was a box office success, bringing Brosnan's series of films over the $1 billion dollar mark, fans, critics and Brosnan himself commented on many of the films aspects, making it perhaps the weakest out of the four.
Brosnan appeared in a number of other films whilst shooting Bond, and was certainly interested in doing a fifth Bond. However in early 2005, he decided that he would call it a day and not appear in any more Bond films, giving the producers the job of finding another Bond once more.
After troubled beginnings, Brosnan initially started life as a commercial illustrator. With a brief spell as a fire-eater, he eventually joined a drama school where he found he enjoyed acting. After graduating he moved into the theatre where he performed in a number of successful plays, before deciding to move to California. Brosnan gained further success appearing in a number of TV series and films before eventually being given the role of Bond in 1994.
With the launch of Goldeneye, Brosnan's portrayal of Bond once again brought about a change. While not quite the stark contrast between Bond played by Roger Moore and Timothy Dalton, Brosnan's Bond brought back some of the humour and suave that some fans complained were missing from the Dalton films. Bond now had a smooth flair and natural charm, was one for the ladies and had a witty comment for nearly every occasion.
Over the next three films Bond's character gets more complex and darker, such as when he coldy kills Dr Kaufman and Elektra King. Brosnan's portrayal of Bond also becomes more sensitive, more vulnerable and certainly less invincible. This is seen during The World Is Not Enough, but is especially the case in Die Another Day when Bond is captured in North Korea, and later operates as a escaped rogue agent.
Even with this taken into account, opinion is that with Die Another Day becoming a much less realistic, gadget-laden, all-guns-blazing, flight of fancy, the right call was made by Brosnan to step down. This would allow the series to take a break, and the character the time to be given a new direction in the form of Daniel Craig. §