Over the years, the character of James Bond written up by Ian Fleming has been portrayed by many people. Sean Connery started in Doctor No (1962).
He gave the character a face, and played 007 for seven movies namely- Dr. No (1962); From Russia With Love(1963); Goldfinger(1964); Thunderball(1965); You only Live Twice(1967); Diamonds Are Forever(1971); and Never Say Never Again (1983). All movies were commercial success. Connery is a fan favorite Bond, and being the first bond makes him a standard that all future bonds were compared against.
Amongst the more popular Bonds was Roger Moore. He played Bond in Seven movies again. It started with Live And Let Die(1973); The Man With The Golden Gun(1974);The Spy Who Loved Me(1977); Moonraker(1979); For Your Eyes Only(1981); Octopussy(1983);and lastly A View To Kill(1985).
However his last Bond performance wasn’t exactly a classic James Bond movie. A View to Kill (1985) has been criticized for being too violent and over the top. Moore had also visibly aged during its shooting, and was fifty seven years of age. It doesn’t however mean that he was not of comparable standards to the previous Bond- Sean Connery. At his prime, in Octopussy(1983), Moore delivered a performance worthy of the highest praise and was much appreciated for it. It was his peak as Bond.
Pierce Brosnan was regarded as the best Bond by most of the Bond fan base. He gave the character an undeniable suave and a light and breezy attitude which has been Fleming’s goal since Sean Connery.
Pierce was well informed about the Bond’s that preceded him. He reportedly wanted to work only on six Bond films much like Connery. He was well aware of the negative reaction A View to Kill(1985) starring Roger Moore received.
Before we come to the current Bond, let’s take a look at the “Not so famous” Bond’s. These Bond’s were rather unimpressive and their portrayal of Bond didn’t last as long.
David Niven’s Bond career started back in 1967 with the movie Casino Royal and it ended with the same. It was one of the Bond movies which took barely any cue from the original story by Ian Flemming, and made it more of a comedy. Not much people have seen it, nor are aware of it. His performance as Bond was dismal and rather forgetful.
Barry Nelson is widely regarded as the first ever James Bond, who portrayed the character eight years before Sean Connery. He portrayed Bond in a 1954 adaptation of Casino Royale.
Most of us have never heard of him, mostly because it was such a long time back.
Gorge Lazenby’s only Bond film was On Her Majesty’s Secret Service(1969). He was widely regarded as a failure as Bond and never returned to the role.
Timothy Dalton served as Bond for two movies, Living Daylights(1987) and License to Kill(1989). Dalton’s Bond was liked by many, but lacked the suave and breezy aesthetic that Bond was a poster child of.. Living Daylights(1987) and License to Kill(1989) never received much praise particularly, and wasn’t something that Bond fans drooled over.
Perhaps the most controversial Bond ever was Daniel Craig.
His portrayal of Bond is either loved or hated. The Bond fan base is torn apart when it comes to Daniel Craig. His casting was protested by man.
However, previous Bonds voiced their support for his casting, and it was the right decision, as his first Bond movie- Casino Royale(2006) was a blockbuster hit, grossing more than any previous Bond film did, only to be trumped in the future by Skyfall(2012) , also a Daniel Craig- Bond movie.