Who Was The Best James Bond?
Since the first James Bond movie was released in 1962, martini’s have been shaken, not stirred, around the world. Bond is a cult classic character that you can’t help but love. He made the world of espionage enchanting for viewers that couldn’t get enough. Playing James Bond is an honour in the film industry and some fantastic actors have put on their best suit and given us amazing performances over the years. While we loved all of them, some actors encapsulated what it means to be a Bond better than others. Here’s our ranking of the best James Bond portrayals to date.
#7 David Niven (1967)
It’s not that Niven’s portrayal wasn’t well done, it just wasn’t nearly as memorable and it didn’t depict Bond in the same way as we all have come to know and love. Niven wasn’t nearly as seductive as others and the audience missed that womanizing element in the film. Smart and cool, but not quite as suave. He is a lesser-known Bond as he only played in the single film Casino Royale and is often considered to be the least like the original character in the novels.
#6 George Lazenby (1969)
The handsome Australian actor was the youngest James Bond – Lazenby was only 29 years old when filming On Her Majesty’s Secret Service. It was his first and only Bond portrayal, but also his first film role of all time. Director Peter Hunt took a chance on Lazenby and it didn’t end up being the best fit for anyone. Rumour has it Lazenby had problems with some of his co-stars and even though his acting skills were up to par, issues behind the scenes seemed to leak on the screen. His portrayal of Bond is considered to be stiff and dull.
#5 Timothy Dalton (1986 - 1994)
Unlike the last two names on this list, Dalton is most likely a Bond portrayal you remember, but it might not be your favourite. There are a lot of ways Dalton did a great job in both the thrilling License to Kill and The Living Daylights. However, his depiction of the character was a little too serious for audiences. He didn’t seem to have nearly as much fun with the role as some of the others on this list.
#4 Pierce Brosnan (1994 - 2004)
Brosnan kind of came out of the left field for audiences that expected Dalton to return for a third movie, but he didn’t disappoint. You probably remember him best from the iconic GoldenEye, a favourite in the franchise. Though he starred in four Bond films, not all of them were as well received. He was charming and did a great job bringing Bond into the 21st century. However, was he one of the most beloved? Not necessarily.
#3 Roger Moore (1972 - 1985)
Speaking of having fun with it, Moore was the goofy Bond we all know and love. He has starred in the most James Bond movies to date with seven films, meaning one of your favourites is probably somewhere in that bunch. Although his character pulled away from the original depiction of Bond in the Fleming novels, it was perfect for the big screen. Fun fact – Moore thought he looked so awkward that they hired a double to film all of his running scenes. We sure wish we could see that footage.
#2 Daniel Craig (2005 to present)
Craig is the current Bond and his portrayal is the most modern. His films have an advantage over his predecessors with so many advancements in special effects. They are thrilling, star some fantastic actors, and have gotten current generations just as excited about the character as others. Craig balances some of the best action scenes in the franchise with a more humanising and playful portrayal. He has certainly done the role justice.
#1 Sean Connery (1962 - 1967, 1971 and 1983)
The first spot on this list is kind of a given in our opinion. Connery was the first James Bond and is easily considered the most notable and iconic portrayal. For decades other actors have been scrutinised trying to live up to his depiction of the character. It’s hard not to think of him as the most quintessential Bond out there when he said every classic line we quote today. He was kind of cold-hearted and a skilful spy, but also charming and suave. All the boys wanted to be him, all the women wanted to be with him, he was the original Bond, James Bond.