Honor Blackman, ‘Bond Girl’ in 007’s, ‘Goldfinger,’ Dies

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Honor Blackman with Sean Connery

Honor Blackman, who starred as the no-nonsense “Bond Girl,” Pussy Galore, in 1964’s James Bond 007 film, Goldfinger, died April 5. Her family announced the news to the Guardian newspaper, and on her Facebook page, noting “It’s with great sadness that we have to announce the death of Honor Blackman aged 94. She died peacefully of natural causes at her home in Lewes, Sussex [U.K.], surrounded by her family.”

Blackman was 38-years-old when she was cast as Pussy Galore in Goldfinger, five years older than Bond portrayer, Sean Connery. The film was the third installment of one of the most successful and popular movie franchises in history.

“Who are you?,” Bond asks. “My name is Pussy Galore,” is the response.

“I must be dreaming…”

From her official biography: Blackman was born on Aug. 22, 1925, in Plaistow, Newham, London.

For her sixteenth birthday her father offered her a choice: a bicycle or elocution classes. She chose the latter.

Her elocution teacher was an inspirational woman who introduced her to a world of poetry and theatre previously unknown to her. In the process Honor discovered talents she didn’t know she had. Her teacher advised Honor’s father to enroll her in the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, which she duly attended part-time while working as an office clerk in the home office.

It was suggested to Honor – upon her graduation – she should audition as an understudy in a West End play, The Guinea Pig. She did, and was successful in securing the job. Further good fortune came her way when the show’s lead actress fell ill, Honor stepped in. Two more West End plays followed but as a principal.

Her first film appearance soon followed; a non-speaking part in Fame is the Spur, at Denham Studios, in which she was killed by a cavalryman— life almost imitating art alas, as she was nearly killed by the horse that stepped on her hair whilst she was on the ground.

Joining the Rank Organisation’s stable of talent at Pinewood, Blackman appeared in a number of movies including Quartet and So Long at the Fair with Dirk Bogarde, next came the film of the sinking of the Titanic – A Night to Remember and a Norman Wisdom comedy The Square Peg.

Television work followed and began to dominate her career with appearances that included The Saint, opposite future James Bond portrayer, Roger Moore.

Blackman married Bill Sankey in 1946, but divorced eight years later. In 1961 she married actor Maurice Kaufmann and very soon after went to meet legendary producer Leonard White with a view to playing Cathy Gale in The Avengers opposite, Patrick Macnee.

The pair recorded a single together, “Kinky Boots,” which referred to the boots Blackman’s character wore on the show. Decades later, the song became a Top 10 hit in the U.K.

It was her performance in The Avengers that led Bond producer Albert Broccoli to cast her, at age 38, to play “Bond Girl,” Pussy Galore. Blackman was five years older than her 007 co-star, Sean Connery.

Watch Goldfinger‘s final scene… “This is no time to be rescued…”

Blackman is survived by two children, and four grandchildren.

Related: The very first “Bond Girl” died in 2018

The single of Shirley Bassey’s recording of “Goldfinger” reached #8 in the U.S. in 1965.

Watch the film’s trailer

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