Published On: Mon, May 23rd, 2022

Roger Moore’s traumatic experience that made him hate guns despite James Bond role | Films | Entertainment

World War Two adventure Escape to Athena, originally released in 1979, airs today from 3pm on BBC Two, with Moore heading up an electric cast including Telly Savalas and David Niven. The 1979 film follows the story of prisoners of war who are working on an archaeological dig, who plan to attempt to save 10 islanders in Greece, threatened with death. The film failed to garner huge critical acclaim, its motorcycle chase scene was described as “one of the most memorable… in cinematic history”.

While Moore sadly passed away at the age of 89 in 2017, his legacy has lived on, particularly with his turn in the iconic franchise James Bond.

Alongside the likes of Sean Connery, Moore is often considered by some generations to be the best Bond incarnation in its 25-film history.

Playing Bond between 1973 and 1985, Moore’s reputation on shows such as The Saint earned him a shot at becoming the world’s most famous secret agent.

This was despite his apparent fear of guns, reports suggest.

Moore’s phobia of guns was discussed in his 2008 memoir My Word is My Bond, which saw the star struggle to use the secret agent’s trusty Walther PPK.

The English actor noted that the main reason for his phobia came from his time carrying out National Service, and during his commentary for his final Bond film A View To A Kill, Moore went further.

He explained how on a refresher training course for weapons, a gun exploded in his hands.

Moore said: “A gun blew up in my hands, which deafened me for a few days.

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He added: “I regret that sadly heroes, in general, are depicted with guns in their hands, and to tell the truth I have always hated guns and what they represent.”

Moore also once noted how on the set for 1974’s Bond film The Man with the Golden Gun, he was encouraged by director Guy Hamilton to be more violent in the role.

In his book, Moore continued: “That sort of characterisation didn’t sit well with me.

“I suggested my Bond would have charmed the information out of her by bedding her first.

“My Bond was a lover and a giggler, but I went along with Guy.”

A Reuters report also revealed how Moore would later be disgusted by the level of violence in A View To A Kill, adding “that wasn’t Bond”.

As Moore grew older, reports show, he became “completely opposed to small arms and what they can do to children”.

He said: “I am happy to have done it, but I’m sad that it has turned so violent.”

He added: “I don’t like guns.”

Escape to Athena airs today from 3pm on BBC Two.

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