MI6 History Reveals Real James Bond

Author reveals Ian Fleming's inspiration
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 22, 2010 3:59 AM CDT
Updated Sep 22, 2010 6:20 AM CDT
Ian Fleming, British author and creator of James Bond, befriended former agent Wilfred Dunderdale.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – An author given license to go through MI6's pre-1949 files says he's uncovered a few real-life inspirations for James Bond in the British spy agency's history, including the most likely devil-may care candidate. Commander Wilfred Dunderdale, "had a penchant for pretty women and fast cars" while heading up the agency's Paris station in the '30s, author Keith Jeffery tells the Telegraph. Dunderdale was "a man of great charm and savoir-faire" who befriended James Bond author Ian Fleming later in life and claimed to have recognized himself in numerous penned escapades, Jeffery says.

The scene in Goldfinger where Bond emerges from the water and unzips a wetsuit to reveal a spotless dinner suit was based on reality, Jeffery says. Another agent working for MI6 swam ashore near a casino in Nazi-occupied Holland wearing a tuxedo under a specially designed rubber suit. A colleague sprinkled him with brandy to complete the disguise as a party-goer, and the agent smoothly blended into the casino crowd, Jeffery writes in his book MI6, the History of the Secret Intelligence Service. (Read more Ian Fleming stories.)

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