Interview with Sir Roger Moore

Chrissy ON Oct 30, 2012 AT 10:18 am

by Chrissy Iley

Last week Bond hit London with a fever that I’ve never known Bond create. A whole channel – SkyBond – had got everyone in the mood for Skyfall. And there’s even talk of Oscar nominations for an action movie, shock horror.

I think it’s patriotism gone a little too far. No Bond has ever been associated with great acting, simply great action.

Poor Sir Roger Moore, ever self-deprecating, always used to say he was a terrible actor as a defence mechanism before anyone else did.

Sir Roger Moore

I’m very rarely excited to meet actors/celebrities/luminaries. But having what Paul McKenna would refer to as a cheeky glass of Sancerre in the oak panelled lobby of a Knightsbridge hotel with Sir Roger was a top experience.

He’d been coming to this hotel for over 20 years. They now know to bring him Sancerre. Any other bar in London would offer him an obligatory martini shaken not stirred years after his final Bond performance.

Sir Roger was wearing a navy blue blazer with brass buttons. He joked he has the blazer five days a week but on Tuesdays and Thursdays Paul McKenna has it. They have become unlikely friends. McKenna has always loved all things Roger, all things Bond. And Sir Roger went to him to be hypnotised to stop eating bread.

‘He told me I have to imagine the most repulsive taste so I imagined coriander because I really can’t stand it.’ Sir Roger described Paul McKenna’s tapping technique. ‘And at the end of it I stopped eating bread.’

He tells me when he first got the part of James Bond he was told he had to lose a bit of weight and get rid of his ‘poofy woofy’ hair, the style he favoured for playing the aristocrat Lord Brett Sinclair in The Persuaders.

In those days there were no compulsory four hour fitness workouts. He says, ‘I didn’t have a special diet. I carried on my life as normal. I did 45 minutes of exercises every morning working against my own weight, and that was it. Daniel Craig has muscles upon muscles.’ Sir Roger’s eyes do a little swivel and the eyebrow goes up.

He’s 85 but still tall and strong looking although he insists he can’t ski any more because he can’t bend his legs properly. It’s incredible to think that he was 57 when he played his last Bond. His wit is sharp and dry, just like the Martini’s he doesn’t drink.

He had a complicated love life. He says his wives got irritated with him because he refused to raise his voice and fight back. His first wife put all his clothes in a full bath so that he couldn’t leave. His second smashed him over the head with a guitar. His third, the mother of his children, lasted until he met the love of his life Kristina, who he talks about in super romantic terms and her name is always prefixed with ‘my darling’.

He tells a story of how they first met. She had recently moved into the neighbourhood in the South of France. A mutual neighbour was having a lunch party. The guests were beginning to arrive and the host said, ‘Soon, Sammy Davis will be coming.’ Kristina was excited at the thought of meeting the legendary ratpacker, and in walked a black cat, a family pet. The host said in the same tone, ‘Soon Roger Moore will be coming.’ Kristina was looking for another car when the man himself arrived and took her breath away. And it seems he’s been doing that ever since.

Bond on Bond by Sir Roger Moore

Sir Roger’s book Bond On Bond is a classy glossy homage to all the Bonds written with his customary dry charm. It is out now published by Michael O’Mara Books.

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