After a far too long vacation I am back behind my computer and it is finally time for a new Bond location. The first post for August takes Bond back to the old British Crown Colony…
In the beginning of You Only Live Twice, Bond is working on a case in Hong Kong. He is enjoying the company of a Chinese agent in a hotel room when he is rudely interrupted by two gunmen. Ling, the Chinese agent, is in fact also working for Mi6 and is there to help Bond stage his own death.
“Well at least he died on the job…”
-Royal Hong Kong police officer-
After the assassination, the Royal Hong Kong Police Force arrives at the scene. This exterior shot was filmed at Hong Kong’s famed shopping street, Nathan Road in Kowloon. Of course Hong Kong has changed beyond recognisability, but the part of Nathan Road that was seen in the film was allegedly 611-615A Nathan Road in Mong Kok. Located on the Kowloon side of Hong Kong, Nathan Road starts on the southern part of Kowloon at its junction with Salisbury Road, right where The Peninsula is located and continues north.
|Nathan Road around the same area as “Bond’s hotel”|
A villain is observing Bond’s funeral from the Hong Kong Yacht Club while reading Bond’s obituary in The Hong Kong Tiger Standard. Today simply known as The Standard, the free English newspaper is still distributed in Hong Kong. The article however is a fake. You can clearly see that Bond’s obituary has been put in afterwords to match the cover page.
However, the article reads:
“In the early hours of this morning, in a Hong Kong Hotel bedroom, was recovered the body of the British Naval Commander James Bond.
The body was discovered by two police inspectors of the Hong Kong Police Force, who answered an emergency call from from a nearby bar. The gunfire was heard by people in the street below and the police were on the scene within minutes. As yet there has been no arrest but the police…”
“Like Peking duck is different from Russian caviar, but I love them both.”
The Chinese girl, Ling, who appears to be a bad girl is actually hired by Mi6 to help with arranging Bond’s “death”. Ling is played by Tsai Chin and this Shanghai born actress (born 1933) was in fact the first ever Chinese to be trained at London’s Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA) in the 1950’s. RADA is of course known to Bond fans as the drama school where both Sir Roger and Lois Maxwell got their education. In London’s West End, Tsai Chin have starred in, among other things, ‘The World of Suzie Wong’ (the novel taking place in Hong Kong, also referred to by M in The Man With the Golden Gun).
The Bond connection continued when Chin made an appearance in Casino Royale, almost 40 years after her close encounter with Connery in Hong Kong. In Casino Royale she portrays the mysterious Madame Wu, who played poker against Le Chiffre on his yacht and also participated in the poker game at Casino Royale in Montenegro.
“Darling, I give you very best duck!”