The TIMOTHY DALTON Appreciation thread - Discuss His Life, His Career, His Bond Films

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  • DwayneDwayne New York City
    Posts: 2,566
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.
  • edited December 2022 Posts: 2,877
    I think there was definitely a sense of franchise fatigue and taking Bond for granted. The era marked the rise and crest of the Stallone-Schwarzenegger-Willis style of action film and GE benefited from being released just as that cycle was beginning to wind down.

    My impression is that filmgoers in the '89 knew there was a new Bond film out, but they were far more aware of the various newer (and better-marketed) franchises out there that offered more novelty value. It's certainly true that the American public didn't warm to Dalton, but again, better marketing would have done a better selling job. And even Roger's second film as Bond underperformed despite a strong start.

    As for the “boring James Bond” remark, I think by the time Dalton arrived the public's fixed idea of a Bond film was a silly, over-the-top cartoon, and anyone who attempted to be truly down to earth would have been branded boring. One can only imagine the howls of disgust if Daniel Craig had played Bond in a 1987 version of Casino Royale! The public wasn't really ready for a darker, more downbeat Bond until the later years of the Bush era, when terrorism and the second Iraqi war had soured the public mood. During the gung-hos 80s Bond was probably bound to look old-hat no matter what the series did, especially when there were so many new American action heroes around.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,330
    Revelator wrote: »
    I think there was definitely a sense of franchise fatigue and taking Bond for granted. The era marked the rise and crest of the Stallone-Schwarzenegger-Willis style of action film and GE benefited from being released just as that cycle was beginning to wind down.

    My impression is that filmgoers in the '89 knew there was a new Bond film out, but they were far more aware of the various newer (and better-marketed) franchises out there that offered more novelty value. It's certainly true that the American public didn't warm to Dalton, but again, better marketing would have done a better selling job. And even Roger's second film as Bond underperformed despite a strong start.

    As for the “boring James Bond” remark, I think by the time Dalton arrived the public's fixed idea of a Bond film was a silly, over-the-top cartoon, and anyone who attempted to be truly down to earth would have been branded boring. One can only imagine the howls of disgust if Daniel Craig had played Bond in a 1987 version of Casino Royale! The public wasn't really ready for a darker, more downbeat Bond until the later years of the Bush era, when terrorism and the second Iraqi war had soured the public mood. During the gung-hos 80s Bond was probably bound to look old-hat no matter what the series did, especially when there were so many new American action heroes around.

    Excellent post, @Revelator! I agree with everything.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    Worth noting, by the late 80s there began to form a nostalgia wave for all things 60s, and if you wanted to tap into that with Bond then LTK wasn’t quite the place to go in terms of attracting audiences. By 1995, 60s nostalgia was arguably at its peak. Bond films had been selling a ton of VHS copies over the years that by the time GE came out there was a definite hunger for the return of Bond in cinemas. It is partly why TRUE LIES was a success, beyond being another Schwarzenegger actioner, it was also a throwback to those 60s Bond films with the overt homages to GOLDFINGER. This is why I think there was a chance for a third Dalton film to be a hit if he was able to make a film that tapped into that, and I think GE does pretty well balancing what we expect from classic Bond wile also trying to be contemporary. The whole Brit pop phenomenon that played up 60s pastiches served the Brosnan era well in terms of hype. It’s also why a movie like AUSTIN POWERS would have never worked at any other time.
  • Goldeneye was perfectly tailored for the time, same as Casino Royale. You have to hand it to them for getting it right.
    Although, back in 1995, I loved DaltonBond, and it took me a while to warm to Pierce, and I remember coming out of Goldeneye a bit disappointed at the time. I warmed to him on TND though.
  • DeathToSpies84DeathToSpies84 Haydock, England
    Posts: 253
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.
  • Posts: 1,876
    Goldeneye was perfectly tailored for the time, same as Casino Royale. You have to hand it to them for getting it right.
    Although, back in 1995, I loved DaltonBond, and it took me a while to warm to Pierce, and I remember coming out of Goldeneye a bit disappointed at the time. I warmed to him on TND though.

    Same here. The whole reception that Brosnan was Bond before ever arriving always felt it was more of a mass audience decision. It wasn't wrong as Brosnan proved immensely popular, but I was more interested in the more offbeat, Fleming-influenced Dalton than the everyman Bond.

    Revelator is right on about franchise fatigue. Prior to the 1980s, Bond movies were the action vehicles. I'll always count Raiders of the Lost Ark with changing the tide. I saw it before FYEO and came out it knowing the game had been upped. The longer they stuck with Moore and the younger the action stars became, the less attractive Bond was to the younger moviegoers. I was a teen during this time and while most of my peers liked Bond, some considered the franchise part of their father's generation.

    Was it cooler in '85 to watch 57-year-old Moore running around in a tux with girls half his age hanging off firetrucks and blimps or watch Stallone as Rambo single handedly picking off the bad guys? Add in Lethal Weapon, Die Hard, etc. and it pushed Bond even further in the backs of minds.

    The saddest part of LTK was they just kind of threw it out there in the U.S. and expected cause it was Bond it would sell and it backfired. I've always wondered if they'd held it until the holiday season when there were fewer popcorn pictures if it would've fared better. Eon obviously took the hint when it came to releasing Bond films in the '90s and onward.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.

    To be clear, are you talking about US audiences or UK audiences?

    My understanding is that Dalton was well accepted as Bond in the UK, even his films rereleased for the 60th anniversary screenings both made it to the top 10 (interestingly, Brosnan’s latter three films fell near the bottom).

    It’s really US audiences that weren’t enamored with Dalton, especially given the publicity of Brosnan being cheated out of Bond due to the NBC fiasco. That’s what unfortunately tainted Dalton’s run before it even began. US audiences saw Dalton as a placeholder to Brosnan, and he was never able to escape that with the two films he made.

    You could also blame BRENDA STARR. When Dalton was approached, he was already committed to that film which is why he couldn’t do Bond at first. Then when Brosnan couldn’t do it, TLD got pushed back far enough that Dalton was able to get in.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,330
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.

    To be clear, are you talking about US audiences or UK audiences?

    My understanding is that Dalton was well accepted as Bond in the UK, even his films rereleased for the 60th anniversary screenings both made it to the top 10 (interestingly, Brosnan’s latter three films fell near the bottom).

    It’s really US audiences that weren’t enamored with Dalton, especially given the publicity of Brosnan being cheated out of Bond due to the NBC fiasco. That’s what unfortunately tainted Dalton’s run before it even began. US audiences saw Dalton as a placeholder to Brosnan, and he was never able to escape that with the two films he made.

    You could also blame BRENDA STARR. When Dalton was approached, he was already committed to that film which is why he couldn’t do Bond at first. Then when Brosnan couldn’t do it, TLD got pushed back far enough that Dalton was able to get in.

    It still saddens me that Dalton wasn't able to convince US audiences. He really was dedicated. It's difficult to suggest that audiences hadn't gotten over Moore's retirement as Bond, or am I wrong about that? Either way, Dalton looked the part, dressed very well, had the acting talent in spades, did several of his own stunts, studied Fleming, was a capable romantic, fighter and dramatic actor... I mean, it's tragic that this fine gentleman Bond wasn't fully embraced. We were deprived of more Dalton Bond films by a series of events, and I regret that.
  • His portrayal was a bit too mature to be endearing, even if he was class act.
  • I wish Dalton had started a film earlier than he had. Seeing him in A View to a Kill alongside Christopher Walken is one of my dream Bond films.
  • DragonpolDragonpol https://thebondologistblog.blogspot.com
    Posts: 17,629
    I wish Dalton had started a film earlier than he had. Seeing him in A View to a Kill alongside Christopher Walken is one of my dream Bond films.

    Yes, and as much as I like Roger Moore the harder edge of the film and increased violence would have suited Timothy Dalton's Bond much more. So Moore could still have the seven Bond films he could have started in DAF instead which really ushered in the lighter and more humorous take on the Bond character. It's interesting to note that the next Bond era's tone often starts in the final film of the previous Bond actor!
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,330
    His portrayal was a bit too mature to be endearing, even if he was class act.

    Surely not for the films he starred in. He wouldn't have been able to bring that act to MR, though. 😁
  • MajorDSmytheMajorDSmythe "I tolerate this century, but I don't enjoy it."Moderator
    Posts: 13,845
    MaxCasino wrote: »
    GE always felt like to me a Dalton film that Brosnan starred in, which is why it feels so apart from the rest of Brosnan’s run. I think it would have served Dalton in the sense that it was trying to deliver to audience what they’ve come to expect from Bond through cultural osmosis, but at the same time still give something for Dalton to chew on via the conflict with Tevelyan. It could have been to Dalton what TSWLM was for Moore in terms of revitalizing the series and solidify the leading actor for audiences once and for all.

    That's how I feel about GE. As you say, the conflict with Trevelyan, and the beach scene with Natalya, would have suited Daltons approach. I like to think that a 3rd film would have cemented Dalton as Bond in the eyes of the public. Aiming for a tone somewhere between TLD and LTK. And directed and written by people who believe in Dalton, that think that he was the man for the job. But there still remains the problem of John Calley, who flat out refused to greenlight another Bond with Dalton. Unfortunately, he had EON over a barrel, so we will never know for certain.

    I feel that if Dalton did GE, we would have gotten a older Alec Trevelyan, as originally planned. Maybe Sir Anthony Hopkins, as wanted? I don’t know if Martin Campbell would have directed as well.

    As for his third film, some things to consider. He needed new writers and a new director drastically. I think that’s why the box office numbers dropped off in the late 80s. The public realized that the movies were being made by the same people in a possible creative decline. Maibaum and Glenn really needed to go. The right director and possible editor would have been more helpful. Same with RWD. EON’s biggest gift and curse is keeping people around for too long.

    Would Campbell have done it with Dalton? Unless I am mistaken, wasn't Campbell not all that complimentary towards Dalton during promoting GE. he might have softened in recent years, but I don't think he was all that keen on Dalton at the time.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.

    To be clear, are you talking about US audiences or UK audiences?

    My understanding is that Dalton was well accepted as Bond in the UK, even his films rereleased for the 60th anniversary screenings both made it to the top 10 (interestingly, Brosnan’s latter three films fell near the bottom).

    It’s really US audiences that weren’t enamored with Dalton, especially given the publicity of Brosnan being cheated out of Bond due to the NBC fiasco. That’s what unfortunately tainted Dalton’s run before it even began. US audiences saw Dalton as a placeholder to Brosnan, and he was never able to escape that with the two films he made.

    You could also blame BRENDA STARR. When Dalton was approached, he was already committed to that film which is why he couldn’t do Bond at first. Then when Brosnan couldn’t do it, TLD got pushed back far enough that Dalton was able to get in.

    It still saddens me that Dalton wasn't able to convince US audiences. He really was dedicated. It's difficult to suggest that audiences hadn't gotten over Moore's retirement as Bond, or am I wrong about that? Either way, Dalton looked the part, dressed very well, had the acting talent in spades, did several of his own stunts, studied Fleming, was a capable romantic, fighter and dramatic actor... I mean, it's tragic that this fine gentleman Bond wasn't fully embraced. We were deprived of more Dalton Bond films by a series of events, and I regret that.

    I think US audiences were very much open to a new Bond after Moore. Having watched what I have if Pierce Brosnan in REMINGTON STEELE, I can see why Americans thought Brosnan was the heir apparent because he gave a much more comedic performance in that show, and they probably thought he was a natural successor to carry the tone of Moore’s films. Ironically, that’s not what Brosnan wanted, as he was always game for a darker take on the character.

    IMO, I think Dalton would have had a much easier time with US audiences if he came in for one film earlier with AVTAK (which undoubtedly have been retooled with him in the part). This way, Brosnan would have simply been unavailable due to being in the cusp of STEELE’s run, which would mean he would have never been in consideration for the part of Bond, thus all the hype of Brosnan being the next Bond would have never happened, and Dalton might have had an easier time winning his audience in 1985.
  • DarthDimiDarthDimi Behind you!Moderator
    Posts: 23,330
    DarthDimi wrote: »
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.

    To be clear, are you talking about US audiences or UK audiences?

    My understanding is that Dalton was well accepted as Bond in the UK, even his films rereleased for the 60th anniversary screenings both made it to the top 10 (interestingly, Brosnan’s latter three films fell near the bottom).

    It’s really US audiences that weren’t enamored with Dalton, especially given the publicity of Brosnan being cheated out of Bond due to the NBC fiasco. That’s what unfortunately tainted Dalton’s run before it even began. US audiences saw Dalton as a placeholder to Brosnan, and he was never able to escape that with the two films he made.

    You could also blame BRENDA STARR. When Dalton was approached, he was already committed to that film which is why he couldn’t do Bond at first. Then when Brosnan couldn’t do it, TLD got pushed back far enough that Dalton was able to get in.

    It still saddens me that Dalton wasn't able to convince US audiences. He really was dedicated. It's difficult to suggest that audiences hadn't gotten over Moore's retirement as Bond, or am I wrong about that? Either way, Dalton looked the part, dressed very well, had the acting talent in spades, did several of his own stunts, studied Fleming, was a capable romantic, fighter and dramatic actor... I mean, it's tragic that this fine gentleman Bond wasn't fully embraced. We were deprived of more Dalton Bond films by a series of events, and I regret that.

    I think US audiences were very much open to a new Bond after Moore. Having watched what I have if Pierce Brosnan in REMINGTON STEELE, I can see why Americans thought Brosnan was the heir apparent because he gave a much more comedic performance in that show, and they probably thought he was a natural successor to carry the tone of Moore’s films. Ironically, that’s not what Brosnan wanted, as he was always game for a darker take on the character.

    IMO, I think Dalton would have had a much easier time with US audiences if he came in for one film earlier with AVTAK (which undoubtedly have been retooled with him in the part). This way, Brosnan would have simply been unavailable due to being in the cusp of STEELE’s run, which would mean he would have never been in consideration for the part of Bond, thus all the hype of Brosnan being the next Bond would have never happened, and Dalton might have had an easier time winning his audience in 1985.

    That is a very interesting notion! A Dalton AVTAK, greatly improved if possible, might indeed have bypassed a number of issues. Cool idea, @MakeshiftPython. :-)
  • MajorDSmytheMajorDSmythe "I tolerate this century, but I don't enjoy it."Moderator
    Posts: 13,845
    If Dalton is going to be in AVTAK, could we also substitute Tanya Roberts for he Charlies Anngels co-star, Jaclyn Smith? Nothing against Roberts, but it's Jaclyn Smith. :x
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    Remember that scene with Dalton uttering obscenities on the plane in TLD? It would be like that with every scene he’s paired with Tanya Roberts.
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    Posts: 3,962
    Dragonpol wrote: »
    I wish Dalton had started a film earlier than he had. Seeing him in A View to a Kill alongside Christopher Walken is one of my dream Bond films.

    Yes, and as much as I like Roger Moore the harder edge of the film and increased violence would have suited Timothy Dalton's Bond much more. So Moore could still have the seven Bond films he could have started in DAF instead which really ushered in the lighter and more humorous take on the Bond character. It's interesting to note that the next Bond era's tone often starts in the final film of the previous Bond actor!

    Then NTTD means that a lot of recurring characters are going to die in the next era, possibly lol.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    DAD to CR is quite an exception tonally! Though I would concede DAD has some elements to it that would be further expanded with Craig’s. Stuff like Bond being captured, tortured for 14 months, and disavowed by his government sounds like the kind of unprecedented thing a Craig film would do.
  • Posts: 1,633
    Tim as 007 , Cilla Presley as Stacey & Bowie as Zorin....id watch it
  • DeathToSpies84DeathToSpies84 Haydock, England
    Posts: 253
    Dwayne wrote: »
    One factor in that lack of success LTK had in the US market (and of the Dalton era, in general), may simply have been one of franchise fatigue. In looking at the post Moonraker US/Domestic box office, we do see a significant decline (adjusted for inflation 2022 dollars):

    MR $278,420,072.04
    FYEO $173,208,454.32
    OP $196,212,558.91
    NSNA $160,200,910.49
    AVTAK $134,375,653.20
    LTD $129,500,319.41
    LTK $80,427,474.80

    Viewed another way, while we Bond die-hards may want to see a new film every two-years like clock- work, clearly something was up with the general public during this period. Had Bond become, by 1987-1989 (and 7 films in just 12 years), simply taken for granted?

    While we may never know the complete truth, to what extent were movie goers in the summer of 1989:
    • Only vaguely aware that a new Bond movie had been released and figured that they would simply catch up to it later, or
    • Fully aware of LTK and chose to spend their money elsewhere (i.e., the shiny new toys of Batman, etc.)

    If the public response was mostly the former, then a better marketing effort by UA/MGM may have made a difference. However, if the latter reason was the case, a better marketing may not have changed things significantly.

    And, finally we have Dalton himself. Let me preface my comments by stating that I really like Dalton. In fact, in many ways he was my Bond. That said, many, especially at the time didn’t accept him (“…it should have been Brosnan”).

    A few months ago, as I was watching THE LION IN WINTER on TCM, someone tweeted (#TCMParty) that Dalton made a great Philip II of France. Dashing, handsome and with more than just a hint of danger, they really thought he was great in the role. “Why or why”, they added, did he turn out to be such a “boring James Bond.” And while, I not going to join tweeter simply refute this person’s opinion, it is clear that this feeling - to some degree - is still out there. IIRC, a Rolling Stone review of TLD at the time described Dalton as a “shiny hood ornament” on a car in need of a major overall. And just maybe, that was the issue.

    Maybe, after AVTAK, a major re-boot was in order. Not just of Bond, but the entire creative team. Given AVTAK, the Bond as “old-man” jokes were all over the place, and maybe, EON/UA/MGM should have taken a cycle off to re-position Bond and to better differentiate Dalton’s Bond.

    Again, regardless of the factors, the “action-hero” environment of the mid to late 1980s was not easy. My two cents anyway.

    Note: Box Office numbers taken from The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia (2021, Steven Jay Rubin), and I adjusted the numbers for inflation using https://www.usinflationcalculator.com/. As this was done some months ago, updated figures are going to differ.

    Blame Brandon Tartikoff for that. He was the head of NBC when Remington Steele was at it’s peak and Brosnan was going to land the role of Bond before he decided to renew Brosnan’s contract at the 11th hour. Ironically, people are now realising just how good Dalton was as Bond, when they should have realised it back in the 80’s.

    To be clear, are you talking about US audiences or UK audiences?

    My understanding is that Dalton was well accepted as Bond in the UK, even his films rereleased for the 60th anniversary screenings both made it to the top 10 (interestingly, Brosnan’s latter three films fell near the bottom).

    It’s really US audiences that weren’t enamored with Dalton, especially given the publicity of Brosnan being cheated out of Bond due to the NBC fiasco. That’s what unfortunately tainted Dalton’s run before it even began. US audiences saw Dalton as a placeholder to Brosnan, and he was never able to escape that with the two films he made.

    You could also blame BRENDA STARR. When Dalton was approached, he was already committed to that film which is why he couldn’t do Bond at first. Then when Brosnan couldn’t do it, TLD got pushed back far enough that Dalton was able to get in.

    I think it was US audiences, yes.
  • edited May 2023 Posts: 2,877
    I don't think there's a John Glen appreciation thread, so I hope folks don't mind my posting this interesting twitter thread:







    That said, if anyone knows of a better place for it, let me know
  • edited May 2023 Posts: 2,877
    And returning directly to Dalton, Readers's Digest conducted an interview with him last December, and here's what he said about his stint as Bond:
    He wasn’t altogether happy with the results. “Interestingly enough, we were trying to do what the Bond films have since become. They wanted it to be tougher, more real and move away from the silliness, but when it came down to actually doing it they didn’t want to take the risk of it not working.”

    The Living Daylights and his second and final 007 film Licence to Kill were, he felt, “a bit of a mishmash, but I think what they did with the Daniel Craig ones was a terrific step.”

    As for who he thinks should play Bond next, his answer is amused but evasive: “I’m staying out of that debate. It’s not my business and it would create far more trouble than it’s worth.”

    On a related note, Dalton's son is a chip off the old block.
  • Posts: 1,425
    TLD was the 17th highest grossing film of 1987. The top four films were Beverly Hills Cop II, Platoon, Fatal Attraction, and Untouchables. In 1989, LTK was the 37th highest grossing film of the year. The four films that year were Batman, The Last Crusade, Lethal Weapon II, and Rain Man. Interestingly, Sean Connery appeared in one of the highest grossing film both years a Dalton Bond film came out.

    Hard to say why Dalton's films didn't fare well, but the critical and financial success of a Bond film means nothing to me. I regard both TD films among the best in the series.
    Whereas the successful RM films are among my least favorites. For some reason, the PB hardly registers with me. I have seen his films the least of any.

  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 7,955
    CrabKey wrote: »
    TLD was the 17th highest grossing film of 1987. The top four films were Beverly Hills Cop II, Platoon, Fatal Attraction, and Untouchables. In 1989, LTK was the 37th highest grossing film of the year. The four films that year were Batman, The Last Crusade, Lethal Weapon II, and Rain Man. Interestingly, Sean Connery appeared in one of the highest grossing film both years a Dalton Bond film came out.

    Hard to say why Dalton's films didn't fare well, but the critical and financial success of a Bond film means nothing to me. I regard both TD films among the best in the series.
    Whereas the successful RM films are among my least favorites. For some reason, the PB hardly registers with me. I have seen his films the least of any.

    You’re talking about US domestic grosses right? There’s your answer: America didn’t really take to Dalton’s Bond, especially when there was so much press over Brosnan having been “robbed” because of REMINGTON STEELE, that the attitude towards Dalton was that he was only a second choice, a “placeholder” Bond.

    Internationally, Dalton fared a lot better. Brits seemed to have embraced him a lot better than us yanks.
  • slide_99slide_99 USA
    Posts: 642
    F3_D37LWsAAjcjO?format=jpg&name=large
  • MaxCasinoMaxCasino United States
    Posts: 3,962
    slide_99 wrote: »
    F3_D37LWsAAjcjO?format=jpg&name=large

    He always looked good for a man his age.
  • RichardTheBruceRichardTheBruce I'm motivated by my Duty.
    Posts: 12,828
    He IS rainbow's end for a few members here.

  • QBranchQBranch Always have an escape plan. Mine is watching James Bond films.
    Posts: 13,867
    Double 'bow Seven.
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