Website last updated: 21-3-2024

Steven Jay Rubin remembering John Kitzmiller on his birthday

By: Steven Jay Rubin
John Kitzmiller Quarrel Dr No
The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia presents This Day in James Bond Movie History - remembering the late actor John Kitzmiller of Dr. No (1962) fame on the anniversary of his birth in 1913. Kitzmiller died just 51 years old on February 23, 1965.

John portrayed the crusty Cayman Islander Quarrel in the film, joining James Bond (Sean Connery) and Felix Leiter (Jack Lord) in their efforts to solve the murder of MI6 operative John Strangways (Tim Moxon).

Part of the joy of watching Dr. No today is the realism factor that director Terence Young brought to the production in Jamaica.

He populated the film with three-dimensional characters who brought great swaths of local color to the story. Kitzmiller’s delightful Quarrel stands tall amongst those. Introduced while painting his boat near Kingston, Harbor, Quarrel isn’t comfortable answering Bond’s questions, and leads him to Pussfeller’s bar where Felix identifies Bond as an ally. From suspicious local, Quarrel suddenly turns all friendly, and his camaraderie with Bond is simply wonderful. He’s not too keen about going to Crab Cay, but he provides some needed comic relief as he gets there with a belly of rum.

And he’s the one who identifies Dr. No’s dragon: “If that isn’t a dragon, what is it?” To which Bond replies, “A dragon that runs on diesel engines.”

John Kitzmiller, Ursula Andress and Sean Connery in Dr. No
John Kitzmiller, Ursula Andress and Sean Connery in Dr. No. Copyright © 1962 Danjaq S.A. & United Artists Corporation. All rights reserved.

So let’s raise a flagon of rum to John Kitzmiller, whose Quarrel will always be with us.

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



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