Film: James Bond Festival

Friday, August 22

Since 1962, EON Productions has cranked out 21 James Bond films, with six different actors taking the Bond mantle and 10 different directors guiding them through it; 33 sexy sirens vying for Bond's attention and affections (15 of those with ridiculous names like Pussy Galore, Honey Ryder, Jinx and Solitaire); 195 Bond-executed kills; and a dozen near or faked Bond deaths. Impressive stats for a single character and ones that allow for events like Beach Theatre's James Bond Festival, where you can see seven 007 films for $7. Among the featured selections are the first five in the series, in which a young and sexy Sean Connery set the suave Bond standard. Although he was apparently the filmmakers' last choice, Connery fit the role so well that by 1971, following George Lazenby's single underwhelming portrayal of Bond in the sixth film, Connery was bribed back into the franchise one more time with a $2 million paycheck and a share in the film's gross profits. To this day, Connery is considered by many to be the preeminent Bond. See him in newly restored 35mm prints of Dr No, From Russia With Love, Goldfinger, Thunderball and You Only Live Twice while enjoying (shaken, not stirred) vodka martinis and various giveaways; The Spy Who Loved Me (starring Roger Moore) and Goldeneye (starring Pierce Brosnan) are also on the screening schedule. Aug 22-24, showtimes vary, 315 Corey Ave., St. Pete Beach, $7 weekend pass/$3 single admission, 727-360-6697,

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