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The business of film
The business of film

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1.2 When it all went wrong on Dr. No

Take a look through this video slideshow. It contains excerpts of documents from the Dr. No production.

You can access the video transcript below to read the full documents more easily than pausing or rewinding. (The main quotes from each excerpt are also provided as a separate downloadable file here: Dr. No correspondence [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .) These documents relate to a sequence of events that took place while the film was in production.

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Video 4 When things go wrong
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In June 1961, Harry Saltzman and Cubby Broccoli formed a partnership to produce the James Bond films based on the Ian Fleming novels. Dr. No was the first of these. Later that year, Film Finances agreed to provide a completion guarantee. The first day of shooting was 16 January 1962.

Described image
Figure 2 Further correspondence from Dr. No

The first document is the call sheet for the famous scene where Ursula Andress, who plays Honey, makes her iconic entrance from the sea. By the end of March, the producer Saltzman admitted that production was going over budget, and within a week Robert Garrett of Film Finances informed Saltzman in a letter that they would be taking over the film. Shortly after that, Garrett wrote to Eon Productions complaining about the over-expenditure on sets. He was clearly very unhappy with the situation. But by November 1962, Film Finances were in a much happier place with the production.

In a letter to the insurance broker they were upbeat about the prospects of the film. The story ends on 21 January 1964, when Film Finances received repayment in full for the money they had to advance to the production to cover the overcost.

And so the first Bond movie was made – and of course, the James Bond franchise has continued ever since.