Skip to comments.Joseph Wiseman Dies at 91; Actor Played Villian in First Bond Film Starring Sean Connery (Dr. NO)
Posted on 10/23/2009 10:58:22 AM PDT by nickcarraway
The stage and screen star was cast as the sinister title character in 1962's 'Dr. No'.
Joseph Wiseman, a stage and screen actor who played the sinister title character in "Dr. No," the 1962 film that introduced Sean Connery as James Bond, has died. He was 91.
Wiseman, who had been in declining health in the last few years, died Monday at his home in Manhattan, said his daughter, Martha Graham Wiseman.
The Canadian-born Wiseman already had appeared on Broadway numerous times and in films such as "Detective Story" and "Viva Zapata!" when he was cast as the mysterious villain opposite Connery's 007.
The diabolical Dr. No was a formidable foe.
As Los Angeles Times movie critic Philip K. Scheuer put it: "Out pfui-ing Fu Manchu, Dr. No reveals himself to be the head of a vast underworld organization called SPECTER and dedicated to the destruction and domination of mankind. And, by gad, he has the equipment to pull it off."
Wiseman hadn't an inkling that he was participating in the launch of what became one of the most successful movie franchises of all time.
"I had no idea it would achieve the success it did," he told The Times in 1992 with a laugh. "As far as I was concerned, I thought it might be just another grade-B Charlie Chan mystery."
Although Wiseman was part of movie history, his daughter said he viewed "Dr. No" with "great disdain."
"He was horrified in later life because that's what he was remembered for," she said. "Stage acting was what he wanted to be remembered for."
Born in Montreal on May 15, 1918, Wiseman began acting in summer stock as a teenager and made his Broadway debut in 1938 playing a bit part in Robert E. Sherwood's "Abe Lincoln in Illinois."
(Excerpt) Read more at latimes.com ...
My favorite Bond villain is still Goldfinger; so amusing. Although Largo from Thunderball is a close second... perfectly cast.
Joseph Wiseman as Dr. No
Christopher Plummer also disliked The Sound of Music, but hey, it helped him make a lot of money - so he could pursue that stage work in comfort.
Even worse: Soupy Sales kicked the bucket.
And there was only one James Bond and that would be Sir Sean Connery.
A bit off topic: I was a kid all us neighborhood kids would go to the Saturday Matinee to see “Our Man Flint/In Like Flint” The Matt Helm movies like “The Ambushers/The Wrecking Crew/Murderers Row/The Silencers” and whatever Bond movie was playing at the time.
Dean Martin had the best one-liners in those cheesy Matt Helm movies and when I watched them as an adult, I “got” more of the jokes which made them even better.
The good old days when Men were Men, even in Hollywood unlike the limp-wristed bunch nowadays.
Ya know, that’s what I thought, but spell check sez otherwise. Go figger.
He was great. Good actor.
Gert Frobe. Also played the German general in “Is Paris Burning?”
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