Behind-the-scenes of raunchy ‘Goldfinger’ opening sequence with model Margaret Nolan
Margaret Nolan, the visual artist, actress and former pin-up model, is arguably best known for her inclusion in the iconic James Bond film Goldfinger.
The film, released in 1964 and starring Sean Connery as Bond, became the first major Bond blockbuster film and widely accepted as a major success point for the James Bond series. Released to positive reviews, Goldfinger became the first Bond film to win an Academy Award and has a lasting legacy on the genre.
For Margaret Nolan, her role of Dink, Bond’s masseuse, was a relatively small one somewhat insignificant in the wider plot of the film. Nolan’s impact on the film, however, would come in Robert Brownjohn’s now-iconic opening sequence, painted gold and wearing a revealing gold bikini.
Apparently, Nolan only consented to do the title sequence if she was also given a part in the movie.
“On this type of film the only themes to work with are, it seems to me, sex or violence. I chose sex,” opined Brownjohn in Sex and Typography for Herbert Spencer’s Typographica magazine.
“It does celebrate the physical form,” she added. “If I’d been nude it might have been about liberation because up to that point you wouldn’t have seen a nude woman in a publicly visible thing like that. I could have been very pretentious and said this is liberating. But because I was dressed-up anyway I didn’t get that sense.”
Designer of the sequence, Brownjohn, was later recognised for his work and won the prestigious gold pencil at the Design and Art Director Awards in 1965. Such was the racy nature of the imagery, Goldfinger also became the first film sequence to require clearance from British film censors.
The images below, some of which you probably don’t want to view while you’re at work, were taken on the set by Herbert Spencer and were exhibited at the MoMA as a part of the exhibition Goldfinger: The Design of an Iconic Film Title.