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Death of James Bond actor

Sir Sean Connery dies aged 90 at home in Bahamas

Sean Connery in his most famous role

Former James Bond star Sir Sean Connery has died aged 90. 

The Edinburgh-born actor passed away in his sleep at his home in the Bahamas.

Sir Sean played the fictional spy James Bond between 1962–1971 and again in 1983, arguably defining the role, and starred in a number of Hollywood blockbusters including The Hunt for Red October, Entrapment, and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. 

He was awarded an Oscar in 1988 for his part playing an Irish policeman in The Untouchables. 

A former Edinburgh milkman, he was knighted at Holyrood Palace in 2000 and received the American Film Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2006, when he confirmed his retirement from acting.

In 2009 he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Edinburgh Napier University.

Despite living many years overseas he was a staunch supporter for Scottish independence.

Thomas Sean Connery was born in Edinburgh’s Fountainbridge area on 25 August 1930. At 16 he enlisted in the Royal Navy but was discharged three years later on medical grounds after suffering with a stomach ulcer.

Apart from his milk round, he worked in a variety of jobs, including a stint as a bricklayer, a lifeguard and an artist’s model at the Edinburgh College of Art.

Had he not pursued an acting career he may have become a footballer. He was offered a contract by Manchester United manager Sir Matt Busby.

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A friend recommended he audition for the role of a sailor in a production of South Pacific. 

However, he was almost denied his big acting break as James Bond when author Ian Fleming considered him not refined enough for the role.

After his debut in the first film, Dr No (1962), he went on to star in From Russia With Love (1963), Goldfinger (1964), Thunderball (1965), You Only Live Twice (1967), Diamonds Are Forever (1971) and the Thunderball remake Never Say Never Again (1983). Film fans regularly vote him the best ever Bond.

He was married for 11 years to Australian actress Diane Cilento, mother of their son Jason, and was forced to deny her claims of domestic abuse.

He is succeeded by his second wife, the French artist Micheline Roquebrune, whom he married in 1975.

Connery’s death follows the passing in 2017 of fellow Bond actor Sir Roger Moore.

Jason Connery is spearheading a new film and television studio space in Edinburgh, 20 years after his father led a similar project.

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