Over the course of fifty years, twenty-four films, countless exotic locations, dozens of women, scores of super-villains, and God only knows how many vodka martinis, James Bond has not only survived, but has become the definitive gentlemen’s style icon.
Be it the cars, the gadgets or the suits, Bond shoots to kill and never misses.
With 007 making his long awaited return to the silver screen in ‘Spectre’, we look back through the decades at his style legacy, from the classic Connery years to the present day.
Dr. No (1962)
In the very first James Bond film, Dr. No (1962), Sean Connery’s 007 doesn’t wear sunglasses – in fact, the only pair to appear in the film are worn by his American counterpart, Felix Leiter. The exact model is not known, but they’re certainly a cat-eye shape, which admittedly aren’t the most popular male frame shape these days!
From Russia With Love (1963)
In the following film, From Russia With Love (1963), the super-spy himself sports a pair of shades, though bizarrely, the first place we ever see him wear them is inside Istanbul’s famous Hagia Sophia, hardly the ideal location. To the best of our knowledge, this pair are Oliver Goldsmith “Consul”,
In Thunderball (1965), James Bond is seen wearing one of the very earliest examples of polarized lenses: the Polaroid Cool Ray N135. As with much of the gadgetry used (and abused) by 007 over the years, he always remains several steps ahead of the curve!
If you’re looking for the Bond look and can’t get hold of the Cool Ray style, then try these Polaroid “Active Polarized” shades instead.
Somewhat inexplicably, sunglasses disappear almost entirely from the James Bond universe for the next 20 years, though came back with a starring role in 1985’s A View to Kill. The ultra-rare Willy Bogner 7003 Eschenbach shades make an appearance at the beginning of the film, when 007 is in Siberia, and later, disguised as “James St. John Smythe” on his enemy’s estate in northern France, he dons a pair of customized, Persol look-a-like shades that allow him to see through a tinted window.
In the next Pierce Brosnan film, The World is Not Enough (1999), sunglasses would again play an active role in the plot of the film. This time, it was a pair of off-the-shelf specs customized with blue lenses (the ANT BLUE 50X19, in case you’re wondering). In a casino scene, Bond uses them to see in “X-ray” vision, revealing the various guns and knives of his enemies around the room. Elsewhere in the same film, 007 rocks a pair of super-sleek Calvin Klein 2007 sunglasses during a ski chase.
To get the look with a modern twist try these CK8032S silver framed aviators.
The final Pierce Brosnan film, Die Another Day (2002), saw Bond back in Cuba, and also back in Persol (a coincidence perhaps, that Persol’s most famous color scheme is Havana?). This model, the Persol 2672, was designed specifically for the movie, with the brand stating they were “specially crafted to tie in the brand characteristics of the eyewear with those of the Bond character – understated elegance and sophistication.”
Though the next film featured a new Bond, Daniel Craig, 007’s choice of eyewear remained resolutely Persol for the next film, Casino Royale (2006). There are two pairs of Persol shades: in the first half of the film, Bond wears the 2244 model, which has a metal, rectangular frame, and in the second half, the 2720, a more classic tortoiseshell frame, which was released to the public as a special edition tie-in for the film.
To get a the James Bond cool for a fraction of thecost, then try these frames instead.
In Quantum of Solace (2008), the exact model of sunglasses worn by Bond was the subject of some controversy among 007 fans. This was because the Tom Ford 108 worn by Bond in the film seemed to be an exact copy of an older, discontinued model by Oliver Peoples, the Airman. Legend has it that the film’s production team had originally chosen the Airman model, but Tom Ford, who already had a licensing deal to make Bond’s suits in the film, produced a replica model (the Tom Ford 108). It’s this model that Daniel Craig ended up wearing.
The Tom Ford connection continued in the next film, Skyfall (2012). This time, however, it wasn’t a special edition produced for the film, but one of the standard models in the Tom Ford range. The MARKO (FT0144) sunglasses, which are still available now.
If you want the look but don’t have the cash to splash, try these O’Neill “WAKE” aviators instead.
In the latest Bond film, Spectre (2015), Daniel Craig once again sported Tom Ford sunglasses. The now-famous SNOWDON (FT0237) model. A bargain at only $203 you can buy them right now from SmartBuyGlasses.