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Pussy Galore Bond actress Honor Blackman dies aged 94

Honor Blackman, whose film and television career spanned over sixty years, died on Sunday.

The actress made a name for herself in the ’60s as Diana Rigg in the original The Avengers television series, as well as playing Pussy Galore in the James Bond film, Goldfinger.

Honor Blackman dies

Actress Honor Blackman, best known as Bond girl Pussy Galore, has died of natural causes surrounded by her family, aged 94.

Blackman’s tough persona is immediately recognizable in her role as Diana Rigg in The Avengers. She sports daring costume choices of black leather, thigh-high boots, and sultry catsuits.

The actress learned judo for the role, cementing herself as an icon for women asserting themselves amidst social changes at the time.

Along with The Avengers and Goldfinger, Blackman played the goddess Hera in Jason and the Argonauts and appeared in various theatrical productions including The Sound of Music, My Fair Lady, and Cabaret. 

Blackman’s family offered a heartfelt statement:

“As well as being a much-adored mother and grandmother, Honor was an actor of hugely prolific creative talent; with an extraordinary combination of beauty, brains and physical prowess, along with her unique voice and a dedicated work ethic, she achieved an unparalleled iconic status in the world of film and entertainment and with absolute commitment to her craft and total professionalism in all her endeavours she contributed to some of the great films and theatre productions of our times.”

In 1990, Blackman appeared in the sitcom The Upper Hand as the mother of the principle female character. She shared her appreciation for the character in its lively portrayal of an older woman.

“As Cathy Gale I got fanmail from fellas, obviously, thanks to the black leather and everything, but playing Laura I got lots more mail from women. That role made women who’d just retired and felt they’d been put on the back burner realise they had a lot of life left to live.”

Most recently, the actress starred in Honor Blackman As Herself, a one-woman show where she reflected on her rise to stardom with humour and perspective.

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April 7, 2020

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