Trivia - For Your Eyes Only
This was the first Bond film to be based on one of Ian Fleming's
short stories (instead of one of his novels). Interestingly,
there are several scenes in this film lifted from other Fleming
tales. Examples: The assault on the smugglers' boat and warehouse
is lifted intact from a short story entitled "Risico",
and the sequence featuring Bond and Melina being dragged through
the coral is actually lifted from the climax from the book, "Live
And Let Die". The Identigraph appeared in slightly different
form in the book, "Goldfinger".
"For Your Eyes Only" was the first collection of Ian
Fleming James Bond short stories and was first published on 11
April 1960. The collection was subtitled "Five Secret Occasions
in the life of James Bond" and was the eighth James Bond
book. It included the short stories "The Hildebrand Rarity", "Quantum
of Solace", "From A View To A Kill", "Risico" and "For
Your Eyes Only". These stories were originally conceived
in the 1950s as scripts for a never-produced James Bond TV series.
Fleming's working title for the "For
Your Eyes Only" story was "Man's Work" whilst
its title when it was written as a TV episode for CBS was "Rough
Justice" then as "Death Leaves an Echo".
Greece is the major setting for this movie but it wasn't for
any of the "For Your Eyes Only" short stories. It was
however the key setting in the Kingsley Amis James Bond novel "Colonel
The story involving the sinking of the ship the St.Georges off
the Albanian coast was inspired by an international incident
on 11 April 1968 when a Soviet submarine was blown-up and sank
in the Pacific Ocean. Seventy personnel died and the US Navy
located the wreck using the nautical Glomar Explorer, a mission
funded by Howard Hughes, whom the Willard Whyte character in
Diamonds Are Forever (1971) was based on.
This film was originally planned for production and release
in 1979 as the follow-up to The Spy Who Loved Me (1977). It was
even announced as such in the closing credits of the earlier
film. However, it was decided to make Moonraker (1979) instead,
which delayed production of For Your Eyes Only. Following the
release of Moonraker (1979), some newspapers erroneously announced
that the next James Bond film would be called "The Sea Wolves".
Roger Moore did make a film entitled The Sea Wolves (1980), but
it was not a Bond movie.
The name of the Jamaican Bond girl Judy Havelock in the "For
Your Eyes Only" short story was changed to Greek Bond girl
Melina Havelock in the film. The Cuban Major Hector Gonzales
also comes from this short story. The Lisl Baum character from
the "Risico" short story also had a name change to
Contessa (Countess) Lisl Von Schlaf for the movie. The Aristotle
Kristatos and Columbo ("The Dove") character names
also come from "Risico," but Henrico Colombo was an
Italian in the book - the movie changed him to Milos Columbo,
This was the first James Bond script to be written by regular
James Bond writing duo team Richard Maibaum and Michael G. Wilson.
This writing partnership would continue until Licence to Kill
(1989). It was also the first James Bond movie directed by John
Glen whose first Bond movie he worked on was On Her Majesty's
Secret Service (1969) as second unit director.
Steven Spielberg was very much interested in directing a James
Bond film and did have talks with Albert R. Broccoli to direct
this film, but at the same time George Lucas offered Spielberg
the script for Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981).
In earlier drafts of the script, the chase sequence in the snow
had James Bond pursued by bad guys in snowmobiles rather than
Regular James Bond film production designer Ken Adam did not
work on the movie because he had gone to work in Hollywood on
Herbert Ross's musical, Pennies from Heaven (1981).
After viewing Flash Gordon (1980), the producers at one time
wanted to cast not just Topol (Zarkov) in this film, but also
Timothy Dalton (Prince Barin) as Bond and Ornella Muti (Princess
Aura) as Melina, even writing the part specifically for her.
For a time it was believed that Roger Moore would not be returning
to the role of James Bond. A round of screen tests for a new
James Bond were held and James Brolin, Lambert Wilson and Timothy
Dalton were considered. Lewis Collins, David Warbeck, Michael
Billington, David Robb, Michael Jayston, Nicholas Clay and Ian
Ogilvy were also on the short list. Oglivy, like Moore, spent
several years playing The Saint on TV. Maryam d'Abo, who would
become the Bond Girl Kara Milovy in the later film The Living
Daylights (1987), played Tatiana Romanova in the screen tests.
Carole Bouquet had previously visited the set of Moonraker (1979)
as the actress is French and interiors and some exteriors of
that movie were filmed in Paris, France. She was remembered when
it came to casting this movie. Two actors in the movie had previously
appeared in the James Bond spoof Casino Royale (1967). John Hollis
(Bald Man in wheelchair aka unofficially Ernst Stavro Blofeld)
played a monk whilst John Wells (Dennis Thatcher) was Q's assistant
The voice of the Man in Wheelchair (unofficially Ernst Stavro
Blofeld) in one of the movie's trailers is different to the voice
of the character in the actual movie.
It was during this production that Cassandra Harris introduced
then husband Pierce Brosnan to producer Albert R. Broccoli.
Michael G. Wilson makes a cameo as a Greek priest at a village
wedding in Corfu.
The character of the father of Melina Havelock (Carole Bouquet),
Sir Timothy Havelock played by Jack Hedley, was inspired by oceanographer
Jacques-Yves Cousteau. He was once personally acquainted with
James Bond creator Ian Fleming.
Bernard Lee, who played M for the last eleven 007 films, died
while preparing for the role. As a mark of respect, Albert R.
Broccoli refused to recast the role, changing the script to say
that M was on leave. This is the only cinematic James Bond film
to date to not to feature the M character. A number of scenes
originally intended to include M were re-written with Q, eg the
confessional scene. The telemovie "Climax!: Casino Royale
(#1.3)" (1954) did not feature the M character.
Robbin Young was the Winner of the "Be a James Bond Girl" Competition
as Girl in Flowershop. Playboy Magazine, which had had a long
association with James Bond, ran a competition in their magazine
for a reader to become a Bond Girl in 1980. The prize was a cameo
in this movie and a photo-spread in the magazine. Young appeared
in the flower shop scene when motorbikes crash into the florist's
front window. Playboy published some of the James Bond short
stories by Ian Fleming including "The Hildebrand Rarity" in
1960 whilst the James Bond character was seen reading a copy
of the magazine in On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969) and
Bond has a Playboy Club membership card in Diamonds Are Forever
One of the Bond girls was played by Caroline Cossey, stage name
Tula, who was later revealed to be a male to female transsexual.
She appears as one of the poolside girls, in a white bikini.
The press had a field day when, after the film was released,
Tula revealed that she had in fact been born Barry Cossey and
had undergone gender switching surgery when he was 17.
Director John Glen has indicated that for a time it was considered
bringing back the Jaws character for a third time but eventually
the idea was rejected as it was believed that he did not fit
the tone of this film.
Julian Glover, who played Aristotle Kristatos, was a candidate
to play James Bond in the sixties and was on the short-list as
a possible replacement for Sean Connery and George Lazenby prior
to the role going to Roger Moore.
Topol was cast after Albert R. Broccoli's wife Dana Broccoli
met him at a party.
First credited appearance of MI6 Chief of Staff Bill Tanner,
played here by James Villiers. The character had previously appeared
(played by an uncredited Michael Goodliffe) in The Man with the
Golden Gun (1974). The character would be resurrected as a regular
in the Brosnan Bond films, played by Michael Kitchen in GoldenEye
(1995) and The World Is Not Enough (1999).
Charles Dance's first screen movie role was as the thug Claus
in this film.
Stuntman Bob Simmons can be seen as the henchman blown out by
the Lotus car explosion.
The title song is the first in the Bond series in which we see
the person who is singing, in this case Sheena Easton. The song
was a Top 10 hit in both the UK charts (#8) and US charts (#4,
25 July 1981). It received an Academy Award nomination for Best
Song, and was featured in a song and dance number at the Oscars
on 29 March 1982. It featured dancers dressed as villains and
henchman such as Dr. No and Ernst Stavro Blofeld as well as the
real Harold Sakata and real Richard Kiel reprising their roles
as Oddjob and Jaws respectively. A dancer played James Bond and
at the end of the sequence he took off in a rocket with Sheena
Easton who had been singing the title song live. This was just
one of a medley of five song and dance numbers for each Best
Song nominee on the night and it also acted as a preamble to
the presentation by Roger Moore of the Irving Thalberg Honorary
Award to 'Albert R Broccoli' in honour of the James Bond movie
series. Starting with this film and the rise of the MTV Generation,
all Bond films have had music video tie-ins.
Deborah Harry (Blondie) recorded a theme song for this film,
which was rejected by the producers. It appears on their 1982
album "The Hunter".
According to the movie's CD soundtrack sleeve notes, Composer
John Barry could not compose the score for this movie as he allegedly
could not return to the UK for taxation purposes.
To enter the identigraph booth, Q enters a five digit code.
Those five digits were the first five notes to the chorus of "Nobody
Does It Better", the theme to a previous Bond film, The
Spy Who Loved Me (1977). James Bond responds by entering the
final two notes. See also Moonraker (1979).
Wide public interest in the 1980 Lake Placid USA Winter Olympics
was the inspiration for the production to use a Winter Olympics
location and to include story action within its associated sports.
The film used the Italian Alps location of Cortina D'Ampezzo
which had hosted the 1956 Winter Olympics. As such, there are
sequences set at Cortina D'Ampezzo's Winter Olympic venues. Winter
sports featured in the film include the biathlon, ski jump, ice
hockey, downhill skiing, ice skating, cross-country skiing and
bobsled toboggan run. Cast member Lynn-Holly Johnson (now Givens)
was a professional ice skater, noticed by Albert R. Broccoli
for her turn at acting in Ice Castles (1978). Her character in
the film was an aspiring Winter Olympic medalist funded by Aristotle
In the opening sequence, James Bond visits his deceased wife's
grave at Stoke Poges Church, adjacent to Gert Fröbe's golf
course from Goldfinger (1964). The gravestone reads "TERESA
BOND 1943 - 1969. Beloved wife of JAMES BOND. We have all the
time in the world," a direct reference to On Her Majesty's
Secret Service (1969). The scene was written when Roger Moore
was considering retirement from the series, to provide story
continuity between different Bond actors. Peter R. Hunt, who
directed On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1969), was approached
to direct this movie, but was occupied with making Death Hunt
(1981), a film with a similar setting.
Begging Bond to spare his life, Ernst Blofeld baffles viewers
with the cryptic line "I'll buy you a delicatessen, in stainless
steel!" It is reported that the phrase is attributable to
Albert R. Broccoli, who recalled accounts of 1930s New York mafia
gangsters offering full-service delis as a bribe to cohorts,
complete with stainless steel countertops.
The helicopter sequence in the pre-credits sequence involves
Beckton Gas Works, which Stanley Kubrick converted to Vietnam
in 1987 for Full Metal Jacket (1987).
The assassination of Melina Havelock's parents was first intended
as part of the pre-credits sequence. The reaction shot of the
murder was intended to cut to a close-up on her face whereby
the look of anger and revenge in her eyes would then segue into
the main titles.
It was an early intention of the production to put James Bond
in a scene with Greece's classic architectural building, The
Parthenon. Old world architecture had previously been a backdrop
for Bond in From Russia with Love (1963) (Istanbul and The Basilica
Cistern) and The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) (Cairo and The Pyramids).
But in this case permission was refused to film at The Parthenon.
John Glen estimated that every foot of film shot during the
attempted drowning of Melina and Bond by Kristatos cost about £2,700
Snow had to be trucked into the ski resort of Cortina.
When Bibi flirts with Bond (Roger Moore), she states that Aristotle
Kristatos (Julian Glover) is much older than Bond. The Kristatos
character is also a 1939-1945 War veteran. In fact, Julian Glover
was born in 1935, 8 years younger than Roger Moore.
Hockey jerseys in the rink brawl scenes are exact replicas of
the "Montreal Canadiens" and "Toronto Maple Leafs" NHL
jerseys at the time, minus the logos.
A major problem occurred during production which threatened
to stop the filmmakers filming. The monks who lived in the monastery
on top of the Meteora Mountain placed sheets and plastic on top
of the roofs and external infrastructure so as to halt filming.
They allegedly did not like the violence associated with James
Bond. Reportedly, Roger Moore told them that he had once been
a Saint! A special hearing of the Greek Supreme Court was convened
where a panel of judges decreed that the monks only had rights
over the interiors of the mountain-top monastery but the exteriors
were the domain of the people and the local government. The film
crew were eventually able to film at the location which included
a gigantic fall by stuntman Rick Sylvester. They did not actually
film inside the monastery (known as St. Cyril's in the film)
but built a set on top of a neighboring rock for some of the
hideout's exteriors. The interiors were filmed back at Pinewood
Studios on a set designed by Peter Lamont.
Topol was injured when he was hit by flying debris during the
dockside action sequence.
Roger Moore has said that he took a small amount of Valium and
drank a glass of beer before some of the scary climbing sequences.
Roger Moore was not happy about the scene where he cold-bloodedly
kills Locque by pushing his teetering car off a cliff. Although
Moore acknowledged that this was a Bond thing to do, he didn't
feel that it was a Roger Moore Bond thing to do.
Stuntman Paolo Rigoni died during the filming of the bobsled
John Glen inserts his director's trademark (startled pigeon)
when Bond almost loses his footing during his climb to the monastery
when a pigeon from a nest unexpectedly flies in his face.
The close-ups of Carole Bouquet and Roger Moore for the underwater
scenes were actually filmed in a studio with a windfan to produce
the effect of floating hair. The scenes were then played in slow
motion with the bubbles added in. The reason the underwater close-ups
of Carole Bouquet had to be faked was that the actress had sinus
trouble that made it impossible for her to dive or remain underwater.
The stunt double for Cassandra Harris (Lisl) was injured when
hit by the dune buggy in the beach scene.
Emile Locque (Michael Gothard) does not have a single line in
this film, although we do see him talk on a phone inside his
car at one point.
The following actors are dubbed: John Hollis, John Moreno, and
The Italian second-unit director Victor Tourjansky makes a cameo
as Man with Glass in the last of 3 appearances after The Spy
Who Loved Me (1977) and Moonraker (1979).
The exploding Lotus at the start of the film was a tacit acknowledgment
that Bond would not be relying on fancy gadgets in this film
as he had done in the last few entries in the series.
The name of the underwater apparatus that confronts James Bond
with a man inside whilst they were in the Neptune submarine is
called a JIM Suit, named after its creator Jim Jarratt.
The company Autosafe provided the car alarms stickers for James
Bond's Lotus Esprit which read "BURGLAR PROTECTED".
Product placements, brand integrations and promotional tie-ins
for this movie include Olin Skis; Bogner Ski Suits; Seiko Time
(U.K.) including the Seiko H357 Duo Display & Seiko 7549-7009
watches; Diner's Club; Philips Industries; Garmont Boots; Mitsui
Yamaha UK Motorbikes; Tyrolia Ski Bindings; Visa Card; Lotus
Cars, S.A.; Automobile Citroën; American Express; Kelloggs;
Interflora Florists; Scubapro Diving Equipment; Jewel Water Buggies;
Osel Mantis one-man submersibles; Perry Oceanographic submarines;
and Normalair-Garrett (NGL) Deep Dive 55 sea diving helmets,
wet-suits and breathing equipment including the Deep-Dive 500
lift support system.
Vehicles featured included two Lotus Esprit Turbo 2.2 sportscars,
one white and one copper metallic to contrast against the white
snow after the other is blown up; a yellow Citroën 2CV fitted
out with a Citroën GS 4-cylinder boxer engine for a drive
in the country to escape two black Peugeot 504 sedans; black
Yamaha XJ 500 and Yamaha 500 XT motorcycles; Hector Gonzales's
black, yellow & white Cessna U206G Stationair Amphibian seaplane;
a remote-control Universal Exports red & white Mi6 Augusta
/ Bell 206B Jet Ranger helicopter; Aris Kristatos' black Everflex
top white Rolls Royce Silver Shadow / Silver Wraith II car; a
white two-person Neptune lock-out submersible exploratory mini-submarine;
a PZL-3A / PZL Mi-2 / Polish Mil Mi-2 standard Soviet light helicopter;
Colombo's yacht SS Colombina; the archaeological research vessel
Triana; a black and yellow one-person atmospheric submersible
Osel Mantis mini-submarine; the fishing trawler electronic surveillance
spy ship HMS St. Georges containing one ATAC device; Emile Locque's
black Mercedes Benz 280SE; a black GP Beach Buggy; and Aris Kristatos'
motor yacht the Santa Mavra.
When shooting the still for the movie's main poster, photographer
Morgan Kane allegedly asked his model to put the bathers on backwards
as they hung too low over her legs. After the poster had been
released, some newspaper editors felt that there was too much
buttock shown in the poster. To show less skin, the bathers were
extended or shorts were added to the hips in the posters. The
original poster caused outrage amongst various groups, causing
Saskatchewan, Canada, to rate the film "Special X",
despite being rated PG or equivalent virtually everywhere else.
That rating was later lowered. Apparently the model's identity
was not known for some time. More than one model alleged they
were the owners of the legs but it was finally revealed they
belonged to then 22 year old New York model Joyce Bartle.
The literal translations of some of this film's foreign language
titles include Only For Your Eyes (France, Italy, Spain); On
A Deadly Mission (Germany); Agent 007: Strict Confidence (Denmark);
From A Lethal Viewpoint (Sweden); Top Secret (Finland); 007 For
Your Eyes Only (Brazil); Only [strictly] For Your Eyes (Norway)
and 007 Only For Your Eyes (Portugal)
Topol asked producer Albert R. Broccoli to invite former co-producer
Harry Saltzman to the Premiere and he did.
The Royal World Premiere of For Your Eyes Only (1981) was held
on 24 June 1981 at London's Odeon Leicester Square Theatre in
the presence of British Royals Prince Charles and the then Lady
Diana Spencer [Princess Diana] of England. The Gala Charity Premiere
Benefit was held in aid of the Royal Association for Disability
Last EON Productions James Bond movie soley released by United
Artists. They would merge with MGM before the release of the
next Bond film, Octopussy (1983).
The film saved United Artists from financial ruin. At the time
of the film's release, the studio was still reeling from Michael
Cimino's Heaven's Gate (1980), a notorious $40,000,000 bomb that
was about to force UA to file bankruptcy. When this film took
in a worldwide gross of $194,900,000, the studio was saved and
afterwards turned its focus toward blockbusters and less on personal