You Only Live Twice

You Only Live Twice

Synopsis

James Bond is assassinated by Chinese agents in Hong Kong, but it is a ruse so that Bond can travel incognito to Japan and investigate the hijacking of American and Russian spacecraft. Together with Tiger Tanaka and Aki of the Japanese Secret Service, Bond traces a supply of liquid oxygen, which is use to fuel rockets, to a southern Japanese island. So that Bond can live on the island without arousing suspicion, he becomes Japanese in appearance, trains with Tanaka’s ninjas, and marries Kissy Suzuki. Bond and Kissy look into the mysterious death of a fishing girl, and discover that SPECTRE, commanded by Ernst Stavro Blofeld, have a secret rocket complex hidden inside a volcano. Bond, Tanaka, Kissy and the ninjas attack the base, and stop Blofeld from detonating a nuclear war between Russia and America, but Blofeld escapes, leaving the base to self-destruct.

Cast

Sean Connery, Akiko Wakabayashi, Mie Hama, Tetsuro Tamba, Teru Shimada, Karin Dor, Donald Pleasence, Bernard Lee, Desmond Llewelyn, Lois Maxwell, Charles Gray

Producers

Harry Saltzman
Albert R. Broccoli

Director

Lewis Gilbert

Release Date

12 June 1967 (UK)
13 June 1967 (USA)

World Premiere

12 June 1967, Odeon Leicester Square, London

Locations

Pinewood Studios, UK; Hong Kong, China; Japan; Bahamas; Spain

Music

“You Only Live Twice” – performed by Nancy Sinatra, lyrics by Leslie Bricusse, music composed and conducted by John Barry

Vehicles

Aki’s white Toyota 2000GT convertible; Little Nellie autogyro; Tanaka’s train; Helga’s Meyers 200A airplane

Gadgets/Weapons/Technology

  • Walther PPK 7.65mm
  • Gyrojet rocket guns
  • Fin jet dart – a rocket-powered projectile fired from a cigarette accurate up to 30 yards
  • Safe cracker device
  • CCTV/gun device in Osato’s office allowing him to remotely view intruders and fire at them. A CCTV is also found in Japanese Secret Agent Aki’s Toyota 2000GT
  • Little Nellie
  • Wall walking devices
  • Monorail inside Blofeld’s volcano lair
  • X-Ray desk device
  • Lipstick magnesium flare
  • Underwater breathing unit
  • Trapdoor bridge
  • Flash paper
  • Limpet mine
  • Murphy Bed used to fake Bond’s murder
  • Ninja throwing Stars
  • Poison string
  • Trapdoor slide

Trivia

Stunt performer Vic Armstrong was the first ninja down the ropes inside the volcano set – his first Bond film for the future 2nd Unit Director

It was Producer Cubby Broccoli’s wife Dana who came up with the idea to dispatch the baddies car with a giant magnet and dump them in the middle of Tokyo Bay

Sean Connery’s wife, Diane Cilento doubled for Mie Hama in the diving/swimming scenes because the Japanese actress was not a confident swimmer

Wing Commander Wallis made 85 take-off and landings (46 hours in the air) in his autogyro on location to get seven and a half minutes of screen time

The sumo wrestlers would not ‘fake’ a match and therefore this scene was shot with a real match taking place and a crowd of 8,000

The volcano set cost more than the entire budget of Dr. No

Every lamp in Pinewood Studios was used to light the volcano set

Trailer