An exciting new exhibition rolled into London on March 18, and for fans of cinema’s most iconic spy, it’s one not to be missed. James Bond has taken over the London Film Museum in its entirety in a continuation of the 50-year celebration of the longest running franchise in movie history. Across the 22 films that followed, 007’s vehicles and high-tech gadgets have become some of the show’s signature pieces enjoyed by generations of fans.
Bond in Motion showcases the largest official collection of original James Bond cars and this is the first time they have been on display in England’s capital. From 007’s iconic Aston Martin DB5 which returned in the latest movie Skyfall to the Lotus Esprit S1 famously driven by Sir Roger Moore in the 1977 film The Spy Who Loved Me, the exhibition offers a whole host of vehicles, bikes, sleds and boats to explore.
Goldfinger’s proud Rolls-Royce, the buzzing autogyro from You Only Live Twice, Octopussy’s Acrostar jet and crocodile submarine are also amongst the remarkable collection of machines. Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman first took Ian Fleming’s now iconic character to the big screen with Dr. No. From the outset—with that first chase sequence featuring 007 behind the wheel of a blue Apline Sunbeam—Cubby and Harry brought the thrilling vehicle sequences to life.
“I just love this exhibition, it has a really special feel to it. I’ve been lucky enough to work on two James Bond movies: Skyfall and Quantum of Solace,” said Ben Collins, Daniel Craig’s stunt driver. “The battered Aston Martin that I trashed is on display here, and the DB5 I got to drive in Skyfall. It feels pretty amazing to have driven what are probably two of the best cars to feature in the films.”
“My job is to get involved in the scenes when it’s too dangerous for the actors to be doing the driving. Daniel does as much as he can and we spent a lot of time training with him,” said Collins. “He adapted very quickly to driving at speed and the evasive techniques that Bond is famous for. I get called in for the high risk bits.”
Nine Aston Martin DBS’ were used during the opening sequence at Lake Garda in Italy that sees Bond swing into the marble quarry minus its driver door. The damaged cars were constantly refitted and reused but Collins and his stunt team still managed to wreck a total of 14 cars.
“I love the element of danger and being very focused on what I am doing. Unless there is adrenaline in my life I fall over at home and can’t put my socks on. When there’s a serious job to be done it brings out the best in me,” explained Collins. “The fight scene in Casino Royale marked Daniel Craig as very much the new style of Bond, and the car chases have kept up with that.”
The 24th film in the James Bond series is rumored to be released in cinemas in the US and UK in October and November 2015, respectively. Collins is eager to be involved in chasing villains and steering grand escapes. “I would love to work on the next movie. I’ve been involved in the last two, so let’s keep our fingers crossed.”