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James Bond Turns 50, Throws Worldwide Party (VIDEO)

James Bond Turns 50, Throws Worldwide Party (VIDEO)

Mark your calendars: this year, October 5 will be Global James Bond Day in honor of 50th anniversary of the the famous MI6 agent’s film debut.  “Dr. No”, the first Bond film, premiered on October 5, 1962, and Albert Broccoli’s EON Productions (the company behind the Bond films from “Dr. No” to this year’s “Skyfall”) are partnering with MGM, Sony and Fox Home Entertainment for a day of worldwide events celebrating the spy’s life in film.

Foremost is gushy new feature documentary “Everything or Nothing: The Untold Story of 007,” directed by Stevan Riley, which chronicles the genesis of the film franchise (the longest-running ever) at the hands of three men: producers Albert Broccoli and Harry Saltzman and author Ian Fleming, who wrote the Bond novels.

A number of anniversary events have already gotten underway, including Bond beach screenings at the Cannes Film Festival in May. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and Loyola Marymount School of Film and Television are also mounting “Is James Bond,” the first exhibition to feature the complete opening credit sequences from Eon’s twenty-two Bond films.  LACMA, in partnership with Film Independent, is also
screening James Bond double features every Thursday from July through September.

London auction house Christie’s will feature a global auction to benefit UNICEF and other charities, while the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences will host a night of Bond music in Los Angeles. Other events include a retrospective exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York and an exhibition on the Bond films’ many designers at Toronto’s TIFF.

And, yes, the merchandise!

There’s the comprehensive Blu-Ray collection of all 22 Bond films called BOND 50 (September 24 in the UK and September 25 in North America, with a world-wide rollout over the following week in the lead-up to October 5). And don’t forget our own Bill Desowitz’s “James Bond Unmasked,” which features interviews with all six Bonds. 

The newest film in the Bond franchise, “Skyfall,” will be released in the U.S. on November 9. Sam Mendes (“American Beauty”) helms the 23rd Bond film, with Craig returning as the titular shaken-not-stirred secret agent.

Watch James Bond trailers here. Here’s the first from 1962, “Dr. No.”

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