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Flashback To 1973 - Gloria Hendry Makes History As The First Black Bond Girl

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act November 9, 2012 at 7:23PM

Before I sign off for the day... I almost forgot! Skyfall opens in USA theaters today, and I'm betting it's #1 on your to-see list.
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"Live & Let Die" - Roger Moore, Gloria Hendry
"Live & Let Die" - Roger Moore, Gloria Hendry

Before I sign off for the day... I almost forgot! Skyfall opens in USA theaters today, and I'm betting it's #1 on your to-see list.

The critics LOVE it, scoring a 93% rating with over 200 reviews in this far, and I'm sure it'll sweep the competition at the box office this weekend.

Excited talk of a future black James Bond, with Idris Elba potentially being the chosen one, have been all over the web recently - including right here on S&A.

Some of you may remember that another Brit actor, Colin Salmon, was also once rumored to be considered for the role, although that obviously never happend; he did appear in at least 3 James Bond movies (not playing James Bond of course).

I thought I'd switch genders and take a look at Bond girls - whether ally or enemy, frequently eye candy, romantically involved with Bond, and often with a role that's pivotal to the mission; although I'm only considering black Bond girls; more specifically, the very first one, given that the current Bond film, Skyfall, co-stars a black Bond girl played by Naomie Harris - a role that she says is different from previous incarnations of Bond girls, generally speaking; stronger, tougher, more than just eye candy.

That's right, long before Naomie, and before Halle Berry literally made a splash as Jinx in Die Another Day, there was Gloria Hendry who made a few splashes of her own, when she assumed Bond girl duties, as Rosie Carver, opposite Roger Moore in 1973's Live and Let Die

In that film, she became the first African American woman to have a role integral to the plot of a Bond film, as well as be romantically involved with 007

She is NOT, however, the first African American woman to have a role in a Bond film; that honor goes to Trina Parks who had an uncredited role as a bodyguard in Diamonds Are Forever, 2 years prior.

Originally written as a white Bond girl, Hendry's Rosie Carver is deceitful, scheming, and, of course, beautiful; she also had a figure that prior (and even future) Bond girls just couldn't (and still can't) match. If you have any doubts, click HERE.

In her plot to kill Bond, Rosie’s alliance with Dr. Kananga (the film's main antagonist - a corrupt Prime Minister from the Caribbean who doubles as a drug lord, played by Yaphet Kotto), is discovered by Bond after they do the deed. He threatens to kill her if she doesn’t confess.

But you couldn’t. You wouldn’t. Not after what we’ve just done,” Rosie says to Bond.

And he replies, “I certainly wouldn’t have killed you before.

That James Bond dude... I tell ya...

And in a state of panic, Rosie, attempts to run away from Bond, only to be gunned down by one of Kananga’s booby-traps... unfortunately.

Worth noting, when Live And Let Die was first released in South Africa, Gloria Hendry's intimate moments with Roger Moore were cut out because interracial coupling on screen was prohibited by the then Apartheid government.

Hendry later starred in several 1970's Blaxploitation films.

Promotional image of the cast of "Live and Let Die." From left: Julius Harris, Jane Seymour, Geoffrey Holder, Roger Moore, Yaphet Kotto, Earl Jolly Brown
Promotional image of the cast of "Live and Let Die." From left: Julius Harris, Jane Seymour, Geoffrey Holder, Roger Moore, Yaphet Kotto, Earl Jolly Brown

This article is related to: Gloria Hendry, Yaphet Kotto, Naomie Harris, Halle Berry


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