Step behind the scenes of James Bond with Terry O’Neill’s photography

Terry O’Neill, a creative whose life was so ingrained with the progression and development of one of cinema’s greatest franchises, has been behind the scenes for some of James Bond’s most iconic moments.

O’Neill, who was given his first chance to photograph Sean Connery as James Bond in the film Goldfinger, didn’t look back from that moment on. The photographer’s association with Bond was formed at that instance and, as Daniel Craig’s current era in the hot seat comes to an end, fans remain in reflective mood.

As part of his new book Bond: Photographed by Terry O’Neill – The Definitive Collection, a public display as part of a new 007 exhibition which displays some rarely seen images from the James Bond franchise in a daring peek being the scenes.

The new book features iconic portraits and contact sheets from Goldfinger, Diamonds are Forever, Live and Let Die, Golden Eye and the Bond spoof, Casino Royale and more. Contributions from actors including George Lazenby and Jane Seymour and feature along with a foreword by Robert Wade and Neal Purvis, screenwriters for the latest Bond film, No Time to Die.

“I photographed the first Bond film, but I’ve lost all the pictures,” the late O’Neill once said of Bond. “When we started, we all thought it was going to be a one or two film thing. We never dared to think it was going to turn into this huge franchise.

“What’s great about it, and I think it’s the real secret to why it’s been so successful for so many years, is that with each decade, each James Bond, they have really kept up with the times.

“Sean Connery in the 1960s was cool and classic; he really fits that decade. Roger Moore in the 1970s added more humour; very Cary Grant.

“In the 1990s, Pierce Brosnan came aboard and added a real style. Then Daniel Craig —he’s the perfect modern Bond.”

See a selection of O’Neill’s work below and, for a virtual experience, take a tour of his exhibition.

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