For James Bond fans, Sunday's Goldfinger reunion had the Midas Touch in every regard. Organized by Cinema Retro colmunist Gareth Owen and his partner Andy Boyle of www.bondstars.com, the event gave 120 lucky attendees from around the world the opportunity to celebrate the classic James Bond film in the ultimate fashion. With the exception of Sean Connery, John Barry and Shirley Bassey, virtually every living actor and technician from the film were reunited at London's Pinewood Studios where principal photography had taken place in 1964. Among the attendees: director Guy Hamilton, cast members Shirley Eaton, Tania Mallett, Burt Kwouk, Martin Benson, Margaret Nolan, Caron Gardner, production designer Sir Ken Adam, art director Peter Murton, Peter Lamont (who served as draughtsman on the film), Leslie Bricusse, who co-wrote the lyrics to the smash hit title song, and sound man Norman Wanstall, who won an Oscar for the film. This was literally an all-day event, as the stars arrived at 10:30 AM for autograph sessions that were followed by a tour of the studio led by Cinema Retro co-publisher Dave Worrall. A highlight was the surprise appearance of one of the original Aston Martin DB5's which was on loan for the event from The Louwman Collection in The Netherlands. In the afternoon, everyone gathered at Pinewood's Theatre 7 for a screening of the film in digital format. It was to be an historic occasion: the largest gathering of cast and crew to view the movie since its original premiere. The digital print was simply stunning and it's safe to say that no matter how many times you've seen the film, you haven't truly seen it until you've experienced the flawless digital presentation. At the conclusion of the film, Cinema Retro editor-in-chief Lee Pfeiffer conducted Q&A sessions with Shirley Eaton, Tania Mallett, Burt Kwouk, Leslie Bricusse, Margaret Nolan and Guy Hamilton. At the conclusion of the session, Honor Blackman, who made a surprise appearance at the screening, joined Pfeiffer and Dave Worrall on stage to present Guy Hamilton with the Cinema Retro Lifetime Achivement award in recognition of his remarkable body of work that includes serving as assistant director to Sir Carol Reed on The Third Man and John Huston on The African Queen and his own hit films as director that include Live and Let Die, Diamonds Are Forever, The Man With the Golden Gun, Funeral in Berlin, The Colditz Story and Battle of Britain. A clearly moved Guy Hamilton gave a gracious acceptance speech and relished reliving his memories of Goldfinger with Honor Blackman.
(L to R) Shirley Eaton, Honor Blackman, Tania Mallett and Margaret Nolan with event organizers Andy Boyle and Gareth Owen.
Cinema Retro's Dave Worrall and Lee Pfeiffer (r) with Honor Blackman and Guy Hamilton
Finally, there was a memorable photo session as Cinema Retro photographer Mark Mawston posed many of the cast and crew members around the Aston Martin DB5. The event finally ended at 7:00 PM, with weary but enthusiastic attendees recognizing they had been part of a day they will not soon forget.
(Tickets for this event sold out in 24 hours. For those who were not able to attend, but who would like a souvenir of the day, there are a limited number of the illustrated collector's programs available for sale. To purchase from Bond Stars click here)
(All photos copyright Mark Mawston. All rights reserved.)