“James Bond’s” Walther gun, as used by Sean Connery in publicity shots for four “James Bond” films. This 4.5 mm. Walther air pistol, LP Model 53, serial number 054159, was first used by Sean Connery for the promotion of his second “James Bond” film, From Russia with Love. Publicist Tom Carlile arranged a series of poses with photographer David Hurn to shoot an iconic portrait of Connery as “James Bond 007” with his Walther pistol which was to be used as the primary image for the film’s poster art and advertising/marketing campaign. When Connery arrived at the photo studio, together with Tom Carlile and representatives from United Artists, it was discovered that no one had brought “007’s” Walther semi-automatic pistol. By chance, photographer Hurn practiced air pistol target shooting as a hobby and he used a Walther. It was decided between Carlile and Hurn, without telling Connery or the other representatives from United Artists, that they would use his air pistol for the photographs and if anyone were to bring it up that the Walther name on the gun would reassure them. In theory, the long barrel of the air pistol should have been removed by airbrushing during the design of the actual poster, but, for reasons unknown, it was never done. What became of this shoot was one of the most iconic photographic images of the 20υth century. The picture of Sean Connery holding the long-barreled gun across his chest or alongside his face became the most famous of all “Bond” images. So effective were the shots from this From Russia with Love photo shoot, that the series of publicity shots were used for the following three Bond films: Goldfinger (1964), Thunderball (1965) and You Only Live Twice (1967). The gun features a 24 cm. barrel and blackened finish; comes with its original close-fitted Walther presentation case as well as a signed letter of provenance from photographer David Hurn. This gun sold at Christie’s London in 2010 for a world record $437,000.
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”James Bond’s” Walther gun, as used by Sean Connery in publicity shots for four ”James Bond” films.