Sir Sean Connery passed away today at the age of 90 in the Bahamas. Most popularly known for his work as the title character in 7 of the James Bond movies, also being the very first character to play the iconic role on the big screen. Despite this titular role being a huge chunk of his career, the work of the knighted legend extended far beyond Bond.
Sir Sean Connery: Beyond Bond
At a point, he stated he is tired of the Bond bit of his career due to the pressure put on him by the franchise and that he “had always hated the damned James Bond”.
Here is a look at some of his masterpieces, “Beyond Bond”, which made him the person that we see him as.
The Untouchables (1988)
One of the biggest highlights of his career, he won the Academy Award for the Best Actor in a Supporting Role for his highly acclaimed portrayal of a hard-nosed Irish American Cop in the movie directed by Brian de Palma.
This was the first role for Sean Connery which was not as James Bond. Directed by the highly acclaimed filmmaker, Alfred Hitchcock, Sean Connery added a new depth to himself by going “Beyond Bond” for the first time by working on this movie.
Murder on the Orient (1974)
The film by Sidney Lumet based on the heavily acclaimed book by Agatha Christie, the film was a massive commercial and critical success, garnering praise for Sean Connery’s portrayal of Colonel Arbuthnot.
The Man that would be King (1975)
The film version of the 1888 novel by Rudyard Kipling was a great critical and commercial success as well, with Sean Connery playing Daniel Drevot, the protagonist of the novel and film. He portrayed the character opposite Michael Caine with both the actors saying it is their favorite film.
A Bridge too Far (1977)
The epic war film based on Operation Market Garden and directed by Richard Attenborough did not receive an overwhelmingly positive response from the critics, it swept several awards and was a huge commercial success.
Sean played the starring role of Juan Sánchez-Villalobos Ramírez in this Fantasy action-adventure film. Even though the movie got a lukewarm response and was a box office failure, it gained cult status and inspired TV spinoffs and subsequent movies, making it a franchise.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989)
The epic action-adventure film by Steven Spielberg is a fan favorite, where Sean Connery plays the father of the titular character of Indiana Jones, which was played by Harrison Ford. The film was a massive box office success, but despite the public appeal, Sean Connery did not reprise his role anymore in the series.
The Hunt for Red October (1990)
The film based on the novel by Tom Clancy introduced Jack Ryan to the big screen for the first time. Sean Connery played the role of the main antagonist in the film, Marko Ramius, CO of the titular submarine, Red October. The film was a big success and gained a number of accolades.
The Rock (1996)
The 1996 action thriller film directed by acclaimed Hollywood actor James Bay starred Sean Connery as the protagonist SAS Captain John Patrick Mason. The film was a massive box office hit and was one of the highest-grossing movies of that year despite getting mixed reviews.
Finding Forrester (2000)
Sean Connery played the role of William Forrester, a character inspired by J.D. Salinger in this beautiful movie. Sean Connery was also the producer of the movie, which received positive reviews worldwide and also became a Box Office Success.
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)
The very last movie of Sean Connery before his retirement in 2006 was this dieselpunk superhero film that was based on the comic book by Alan Moore (Created some of the best comics of DC) and Kevin O’ Nielle. Despite the film receiving box office success, it was a critical failure and the film went a lot off track during filming, which made Sean decide that he wants to retire instead of going through the stress again.
So it can be safely assumed that Sean Connery was much more Beyond Bond. One Academy Award, two BAFTAs, and three Golden Globes along with his knighthood is proof that his work has been cherished throughout the world. Apart from acting, he was polled as the “Greatest Living Scot” in 2004 by The Sunday Herald, the “Sexiest man alive” in 1989 by the People magazine, and “Sexiest Man of the century” in 1999, again by the People magazine.
Rest in peace, legend. No matter how people remember you, as “Forever Bond” or “Beyond Bond”, your work will be etched in the memories of people for generations to come.