Thursday, March 19, 2015

Happy Birthday Ms. Andress….Day 78 of Bond 365

It’s Thursday and almost through another week. My day job has been rather intense this week, so I am anxiously looking forward to a relaxing weekend. Well, as relaxing as possible since I’m writing a presentation to give at WonderCon in two weeks and have a number of articles to write on the comic book front. For the moment, I hope you have a wonderful evening!

Andress on Dr. No set
Ursula Andress
Born this day in 1936
Honey Ryder in Dr. No (voice dubbed by Nikki Van der Zyl)
Vesper Lynd/James Bond 007 in Casino Royale (voice dubbed by Nikki Van der Zyl)

It’s an entrance that has been copied by many in the decades since, but it was magical when Ursula Andress strolled out of the tropical waters and up onto the sun soaked sandy beach inspecting the shells in her hands as she sang ‘Under the Mango Tree’. That moment made her the single most iconic Bond Girl – a young woman that exuded a certain amount of detachment, independence, and innocence – and the measurement for all Bond Girls after her. Hence, it is not a surprise that she became the single most iconic Bond Girl and continues to top the best Bond Girl and iconic Bond images. Yet, behind the face, Andress believed that she was faking the art of acting; even her voice was dubbed in a few of her most famous roles including Honey Ryder because of her strong accent. She has even said “the bikini made me into a success.”

Andress at 19 with James Dean
The Swiss born beauty had a restless spirit and before she was out of her teens, she had a contract with Columbia Pictures (thanks to Marlon Brando) and the admiring eye of James Dean. In fact, Ms. Andress was linked with several high profile men such as Dean, Marcello Mastroianni, and Dennis Hopper; she married famed photographer and actor John Derek (he would later marry Bo Derek) in 1957. They divorced in 1966 but remained friends until his death. She met Harry Hamlin (you may remember him as a hot attorney in the 1980s LA Law television series) in Clash of the Titans. ‘Aphrodite’ found love and companionship in Hamlin and in 1980, they had a son, Dimitri, her only child. Unfortunately, her relationship with Hamlin ended in 1983.

Andress in Casino Royale (1967)
Andress scaled back on her work to concentrate on raising her son. Since she was fluent in English, French, German (and Swiss-German), and Italian, Andress’ acting centered on film and television projects in Europe, especially since she was living in Rome. In 2000, she was diagnosed with osteoporosis and retired from acting in 2005 as well reduce the number of entertainment events she attends.

And, some Bond trivia from IMDB: Andress is the only actress to appear in an Eon Productions’ Bond film as well as a non-Eon Productions’ film, as well as have her character appears in a Bond novel, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.

© Copyright. Michele Brittany. 2011 - 2015. All rights reserved. All text, graphics, and photos are protected by US and International Copyright Laws, and may not be copied, reprinted, published, translated, hosted, or otherwise distributed by any means without written permission.

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