Website last updated: 12-7-2024

In Memoriam of film producer Harry Saltzman (1915-1994)

By: Steven Jay Rubin
Harry Saltzman Eon Productions
The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia presents This Day in James Bond History - remembering James Bond 007 producer Harry Saltzman on the date of his passing in 1994.

Long before the 007 series became a Broccoli family monopoly (producer Albert R. “Cubby” Broccoli’s stepson, Michael Wilson and his daughter Barbara Broccoli have run the show for decades), there was the original partnership with Broccoli and Saltzman.

It was Harry who originally had the film rights to Ian Fleming’s book series – but lacked the connections to set it up at a studio.

In an historic meeting, he met with Broccoli (descended from the family that brought the vegetable to America from Italy), who was close with executives at both Columbia Pictures and United Artists.

Albert Broccoli, Sean Connery, Ian Fleming and Harry Saltzman
Albert R. "Cubby" Broccoli, Sean Connery, Ian Fleming and Harry Saltzman.

Harry Saltzman was an uber producer, with a career that began on the vaudeville stage in New York in the 1930s. He was a risk taker, a gambler, a player who seldom focused on one project at a time. It was Saltzman who combed through Popular Science and Popular Mechanics magazines, looking for amazing gadgets, and equipment that could contemporize Fleming’s 1950s Secret Agent – much like he used to do in looking for successful vaudeville acts.

Even while producing the enormously successful Bond films, he had his hands in other movie pots – bringing author Len Deighton’s Harry Palmer series of spy stories to life; producing the epic Battle of Britain (directed by Guy Hamilton) and developing dozens of other pictures. Unfortunately, his investment in Technicolor in the early 70s drained his fortune, and he was forced to sell his rights in the Bond series in 1974. The Man with the Golden Gun (1974) was his last Bond.

Harry Saltzman and Albert R. Broccoli interviewed by Fletcher Markle in 1965 for CBC

All text. Copyright © 2020 Steven Jay Rubin. All rights reserved.



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