14 years ago, 19 December 1999, Desmond Llewelyn died in a car crash, at the age of 85.
|-Morning Q, sorry about the leg, skiing?
Desmond starred in 17 Bond films alongside all five Bond actors before Craig. He took over the role as Q, the Quartermaster of the Mi6 lab, from Peter Burton who had played the role in Dr No. During his Bond career which started with From Russia With Love and ended with The World is Not Enough, Desmond was absent only from Live and Let Die which makes him the actor who has appeared in the most Bond films. A record that surely never will be broken. When the Bond series was relaunched with Pierce Brosnan in 1995, Desmond was the only character that was kept from the original cast.
|“Thank you Q, but this time I’ve got the gadgets, and I know how to use them…”|
Desmond was a welsh actor who got the role of Q through his earlier connection with Director Terence Young. When Peter Burton stepped down from the role of Major Boothroyd, equipment officer at Q branch, after only one film, Desmond took over and would soon become the most popular recurring character in the series.
Desmond served with the Royal Welch Fusiliers as a second lieutenant in the British Army during WWII and was captured by the Germans in 1940. He was held as a prisoner of war in the Colditz Castle for five years.
|“Let’s see how she responses to my touch eyh, Q?”|
|“Very novel Q, you must get them in the stores for Christmas…”|
In The World is Not Enough, Q introduces John Cleese as the young fellow who is supposed to follow him, implying that he will retire. Bond expresses his hope that it will not be anytime soon, to which Q responses:
-Always have an escape plan.”
|Desmond’s last appearance as Q.|
Only a few weeks after the premiere of The World is not enough, Desmond’s car crashed with another car on the A27 in East Sussex, when he was returning home from a book signing event of his book Q: The Biography of Desmond Llewelyn. He died on the evening of 19 December 1999.