Did Tom Jones Really Faint While Hitting the Final Note on “Thunderball”?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about music and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the music urban legends featured so far.

MUSIC LEGEND: Tom Jones fainted while hitting the final note on “Thunderball.”

The 1965 James Bond film, Thunderball, was a gigantic blockbuster, not only making the most money out of any James Bond film up until that point, but making more money than the next FIVE James Bond movies (and the next five all made fine money, just letting you know just HOW big of a hit Thunderball was).

The title theme was by Tom Jones and there is an interesting legend about it…
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Was Roger Moore Really Ian Fleming’s First Choice to Play James Bond?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about movies and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the movie urban legends featured so far.

MOVIE URBAN LEGEND: Roger Moore was Ian Fleming’s first choice for James Bond.

One of the most debated subjects in all of Hollywood (and beyond) is which actor should play James Bond in the film adaptations of Ian Fleming’s classic spy novels. Every time a new actor is needed for the role, the level of scrutiny and outrage is more similar to the selection of a new President of the United States, not the next actor to play a famous film character. While the selection process is still quite controversial (many die hard Bond enthusiasts still can’t wrap their heads around the idea of Daniel Craig playing the role, even as his latest Bond film, Skyfall, just passed a billion dollars in box office receipts worldwide), the level of controversy was even greater when the first James Bond, Sean Connery

was replaced for 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service with actor George Lazenby.

For various reasons, Lazenby only did a single film and Connery returned for the next Bond film, Diamonds Are Forever. However, in 1973, Connery was finally successfully replaced by actor Roger Moore, who ended up doing seven films as James Bond.

One of the hooks used to put minds at ease for Moore’s stint as Bond was the alleged fact that Ian Fleming’s first choice to play James Bond was Moore, who Fleming liked in the TV series, The Saint.

Is that true? Was Roger Moore almost the first actor to play James Bond? The truth is quite complicated, as you’ll soon find out…

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Did Oliver Reed Appear in Scenes of Gladiator Filmed AFTER He Died?

Here is the latest in a series of examinations into urban legends about movies and whether they are true or false. Click here to view an archive of the movie urban legends featured so far.

MOVIE URBAN LEGEND: Oliver Reed appeared in scenes in Gladiator filmed after the actor died.

Born in 1938, Oliver Reed lived the life you would think only happened in movies, as a star who spent most of his years drinking, fighting and having an all-around good time.

Reed began acting in the late 1950s, and starred in a number of movies, perhaps most notably at the time in his uncle Carol Reed’s version of Oliver (as Bill Sikes).

The tough, strapping Reed had a similar look to Sean Connery, but Reed’s reputation as a womanizer and party animal kept him from being seriously considered for Bond when Connery left the role.

Anyhow, in 1999, after four decades in the film business, Reed began filming Gladiator, as Proximo, the slave dealer who “owned” the titular character in the film.

Here’s Reed…

Sadly, during a break in filming, Reed died of a heart attack at the age of 61. He had been heavily drinking the night before, as was his wont, totaling an $866 alcohol bill!!

With the tragic loss of Reed, Gladiator director Ridley Scott was at a bit of a loss. He still had scenes left in the film with Proximo in them!

So what they did was quite remarkable (and slightly creepy).
Continue reading “Did Oliver Reed Appear in Scenes of Gladiator Filmed AFTER He Died?”