London: The name of their favourite Bond is Connery, Sean Connery, according to the fans of 007 spy.
Sean Connery as James Bond. Pic/AFP
The veteran Scottish actor topped a poll by 'The Sunday Times' as the best 007 created by writer Ian Fleming. The 85-year-old, who first played him in "Dr No" in 1962, may have long retired to the Bahamas after giving up his licence to kill, but his smoothness is still preferred to the brutish sex appeal of Daniel Craig, 47, the current Bond, the poll found.
Connery polled 45.2 per cent of the vote. Craig took 34.7 per cent, ahead of Roger Moore, the longest-serving Bond, whose wit and innuendo earned him only one 10th of the vote. It is a much closer result than in a similar poll carried out in 2012. Then Connery scored twice as many votes as Craig.
As older cinemagoers fade away and Craig makes more Bond films, his popularity increases. Certainly the "Connery or Moore?" debate seems to have been consigned to history. Craig may still be haunted by the spectre of Connery, but two of his outings in the role topped the poll for the best Bond film. "Skyfall" won with 17.3 per cent of the vote, while "Casino Royale" took 15.1 per cent.
Raoul Silva, a former MI6 officer turned cyberterrorist played by Javier Bardem in "Skyfall", was voted the best Bond villain ahead of Jaws, the steel-toothed assassin pitted against Moore in "The Spy Who Loved Me" and "Moonraker". The cat-stroking Ernst Blofeld was third.
Ursula Andress, now 79, who played Honey Ryder in "Dr No", has been voted the nation's favourite Bond girl. The scene in which she emerges from the Caribbean dressed in a white bikini was once voted No 1 in a poll to pick the 100 most sexy moments in film.
Ryder captured 22.3 per cent of the vote. Vesper Lynd, played by Eva Green in Craig's "Casino Royale", was second. The Australian actor George Lazenby may have polled less than 1 per cent of the vote for one outing as Bond, but Diana Rigg, who appeared with him in "On Her Majesty's Secret Service", was third favourite Bond girl.
More than 4,500 people voted in the poll, which ran for the past two weeks in the newspaper's digital editions. "Spectre", slated to hit the screens this November, is the 24th Bond movie and while Craig is reprising his role for the fourth time, two-time Oscar-winner Christoph Waltz is set to play his arch-nemesis this time.
Italian actress Monica Bellucci and and French star Lea Seydoux are the Bond girls in the Sam Mendes-directed movie.