Legendary actor Sean Connery died in his sleep Friday night or Saturday morning at the age of 90. Connery, the first actor to play James Bond in a feature film, translated Ian Fleming’s secret agent to the screen with a charm and physicality that launched one of the most successful film franchises in history. He went on to craft an impressive second act after Bond, starring in movies as varied as The Man Who Would Be King, The Russia House, and The Untouchables, for which he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. Connery’s career spanned six decades—he announced his retirement from acting in 2006—and his co-stars, friends, fans, and fellow James Bonds are mourning him on social media. Here’s what people are saying.
On Instagram, George Lazenby posted a statement:
Only a few weeks ago I was wishing Sean all the best for his 90th birthday. Now, I’m very sad to be condoling with his family and friends. Of course, Sean Connery as James Bond inspired me personally but seems to have encapsulated an age, the Sixties. I met Sean a couple of times and I was pleased he’d given my Bond film, On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, his seal of approval. He was going to do my film many times and felt it was the best of the Fleming tales. But, to me, the most important thing was his work went far beyond Bond: into charity, into family, into politics and into golf. A man after my own heart. A great actor, a great man and underappreciated artist has left us. My thoughts are with Lady Micheline and Sean’s children and grandchildren. Only love, George XXX
The family of Roger Moore, who died in 2017, saluted Connery on his behalf:
In a statement to the New York Times, Timothy Dalton said, “Sean was a wonderful presence. A great leading man.”
On Instagram, Pierce Brosnan added his thoughts:
Sir Sean Connery, you were my greatest James Bond as a boy, and as a man who became James Bond himself. You cast a long shadow of cinematic splendor that will live on forever. You led the way for us all who followed in your iconic foot steps. Each man in his turn looked to you with reverence and admiration as we forged ahead with our own interpretations of the role. You were mighty in every way, as an actor and as a man, and will remain so till the end of time. Your were loved by the world, and will be missed. God bless, rest now, be at peace.
Daniel Craig released a statement on the official James Bond website:
It is with such sadness that I heard of the passing of one of the true greats of cinema. Sir Sean Connery will be remembered as Bond and so much more. He defined an era and a style. The wit and charm he portrayed on screen could be measured in megawatts; he helped create the modern blockbuster. He will continue to influence actors and film-makers alike for years to come. My thoughts are with his family and loved ones. Wherever he is, I hope there is a golf course.
Connery’s friend and fans from outside the world of 007 also weighed in, starting with his Man Who Would Be King co-star Michael Caine:
In a statement to Variety, George Lucas wrote:
Sir Sean Connery, through his talent and drive, left an indelible mark in cinematic history. His audiences spanned generations, each with favorite roles he played. He will always hold a special place in my heart as Indy’s dad. With an air of intelligent authority and sly sense of comedic mischief, only someone like Sean Connery could render Indiana Jones immediately into boyish regret or relief through a stern fatherly chiding or rejoiceful hug. I’m thankful for having had the good fortune to have known and worked with him. My thoughts are with his family.
In a statement to Variety, Robert De Niro wrote:
I’m very sorry to hear about Sean’s passing. He seemed much younger than 90; I expected—and hoped—he’d be with us much longer. See you up there, Sean.