Honor Blackman believes that Daniel Craig is a better James Bond than Sean Connery, the Scottish actor that she starred opposite in 1964’s Goldfinger.
The 89-year-old actress made her remarks during her conversation with the Mirror. After being asked about Daniel Craig’s performances as the iconic secret agent, Blackman opined, “I’m sorry to say he’s a better actor. But I think Sean would acknowledge that. I think Dan is terrific. He’s capable of so much more.”
Blackman believes that Sean Connery was still the ideal actor to portray Bond in the 1960s though, as he was exactly as Ian Fleming wrote the character.
“Sean was perfection as Bond only as Ian Fleming wrote it,” she explained. “He was a Mr. Universe entrant, he was handsome and very, very sexy and had that ridiculous accent.”
But Blackman knows that the cinematic landscape has changed drastically in this time, and the character of James Bond has evolved with the times too.
“Now it’s no longer like Ian Fleming, it’s more like The Bourne Identity. It’s a different kind of film,” she explained, before then insisting that Daniel Craig was the best actor to have ever portrayed 007. “But that doesn’t make any difference to the fact they’re super films and Daniel is probably the best actor that ever played Bond.”
The debate over who the best James Bond in the cannon of the character’s illustrious history has raged for decades. A 2014 CBS News poll saw Sean Connery come out on top with 51 percent, while Pierce Brosnan was second with 12 percent, Roger Moore came third with 11 percent, Daniel Craig was next with 8 percent, while Timothy Dalton and George Lazenby each recorded 1 percent.
Sean Connery has regularly topped other lists too as he is regarded as the archetypal version of Ian Fleming’s character, while his performances helped to blossom 007 into a pop culture phenomenon. He also starred in the likes of Dr. No, Goldfinger, and From Russia With Love, three of the most popular films from the franchise.
However Daniel Craig has also been heaped with praise for evolving the character for a modern audience, and helping to pull him away from his misogynist past and making him more vulnerable and human.
Blackman, who will turn 90-years-old and portrayed the hugely popular Bond-girl Pussy Galore in Goldfinger, also believes that the character of James Bond can continue to evolve. This was in response to the former James Bond Roger Moore’s comments that he wanted an “English-English” Bond.
Moore later explained that his comments weren’t based on race, while Blackman declared, “I think [Bond] can be anything he likes. Why can’t he be a black man? You have to be a good actor and you’ve got to be a very attractive man – that’s half the battle – otherwise you can’t play Bond.”
Daniel Craig will next be seen as James Bond in Spectre, which will be released on November 6, 2015.