Previously unpublished LIFE photos of James Bond castings

Last week we saw the teaser trailer for SKYFALL, the newest James Bond film in the Daniel Craig era. Not shown in the trailer is that instead of ordering a martini “shaken, not stirred” Bond might be only requesting a cold beer (blasphemous!) thanks to a marketing deal with Heineken for supposedly $45 million. One former Bond, George Lazenby spoke out against the deal. I had never heard of him either, but Lazenby played the Queen’s tuxedo secret agent in HER MAJESTY’S SECRET SERVICE in 1969, a role he won after beating out five other candidates. In 1967 LIFE Magazine sent photographer Loomis Dean to document the final Jams Bond casting sessions for this film. Decades later with the gritty, scarred and broad shouldered Daniel Craig helming the franchise, the James Bond candidates in 1967 look like lounge singers who Craig could beat up with one hand. Actor John Richardson looked even skinnier than I do at his audition session.

See the rest of the photos here.