Former Bond Girl Has Some Thoughts About Why The Role Changed In The Daniel Craig Era

Bond screenshot from YouTube

Swedish actress Britt Ekland has been in a bunch of projects over the years, but one of her most famous roles is playing Bond Girl Goodnight in 1974’s James Bond film The Man With The Golden Gun. She was recently asked about her role opposite Roger Moore and what’s changed now that we’re in the Daniel Craig era.

In short, a lot. Britt Ekland revealed her thoughts on the way Bond Girls were formerly portrayed and how the “PR Department” has an impact on the roles these days, noting, that the current times have changed things.

The Bond girl has to look good in a bikini: that was her role… The Bond girl of my era exists no more because they’re not presented that way. You wouldn’t see her in a bikini next to Daniel Craig in a suit today – the PR department would make sure that didn’t happen.

In an interview with The Guardian, the actress didn’t hold back about the changes she feels she's seen made to the ladies in the world of 007 in recent years. She also mentioned there are a lot of “demands” the women in the franchise face these days, perhaps both from having to play modern women and getting backlash for not sticking to Bond Girl tradition, as happened when we learned Lashana Lynch may take over James Bond’s 007 moniker.

Meanwhile, Britt Ekland’s character is famous for a scene in which she pops in to breakfast with James Bond in a bikini and it is mentioned: “I like a girl in a bikini, no concealed weapons.” While Britt Ekland says things are different now, she does consider herself a modern woman; at the same time, she’s “proud” of the work she put in back in the 1970s.

I’m the proudest Bond girl there is because there are not a lot of us left, and there won’t be any in future.

For complex reasons, Bond Girls – who are now being called Bond Women—are a complicated and touchy subject in society There’s the idea that the tradition of Bond Girls has changed due to the new tone of Daniel Craig’s Bond movies, which are otherwise seemingly well-received. The new leading ladies are often both beautiful and more well-rounded than their past counterparts, but not everyone is happy about the change.

There’s also for an undercurrent of feeling from some that if something is new it is not honoring what came before it, which could be part of the back and forth of this conversation as well. I think sometimes we get lost in this mindset of there is a right way or a wrong way to be a woman on television or on the big screen, which also accounts for the proliferation of “badass” female characters these days. Women should be able to be funny or soft, sexual or sardonic; they can be a lot of different things and still be compelling on the big screen.

We’ll have to wait and see how the women of Bond continue to evolve as Daniel Craig wraps his run in the franchise. Frankly, I’m much more interested in seeing what actor is hired next!

Jessica Rawden
Managing Editor

Jessica Rawden is Managing Editor at CinemaBlend. She’s been kicking out news stories since 2007 and joined the full-time staff in 2014. She oversees news content, hiring and training for the site, and her areas of expertise include theme parks, rom-coms, Hallmark (particularly Christmas movie season), reality TV, celebrity interviews and primetime. She loves a good animated movie. Jessica has a Masters in Library Science degree from Indiana University, and used to be found behind a reference desk most definitely not shushing people. She now uses those skills in researching and tracking down information in very different ways.