No one let their nuts hang as much as the OG James Bond himself, Sean Connery. In the wake of the immortal Scottish thespian’s physical passing, industry figures who either worked with or worked adjacent to Connery have been publicly paying their respects. Including Transformers director Michael Bay, who had a grin-worthy anecdote about the time Sean Connery stood up to Disney – one of the largest entertainment companies of all time – and told them to put up or shut up.
The production in question was, of course, The Rock (1996) – starring Connery as former SAS Captain John Patrick Morgan alongside Nicolas Cage as FBI Special Agent Dr Stanley Goodspeed and directed by Bay. As Bay recounts in his article for The Hollywood Reporter, here’s what went down:
“I was young, dumb, doing my second movie – The Rock. I had heard he was notoriously tough on directors. I was terrified when I gave him my first direction: “Uh… Sean, can you please do that less charming?” He said, “Sure, boy!” (“Boy” was the nickname he gave me).
Car chase. Sean’s driving and I’m filming him alone. He slams the brakes: my head hits the window. He says, “You OK?” I say, “No… the Disney folks are here to kick my butt for being two days over schedule.” Sean, with that sly look, says, “You want me to help?” Cut to: having lunch with the Disney execs in a third-grade classroom, sitting at tiny tables, and chairs. We looked like giants. I announce that Mr Connery would like to visit and say hi. Sean comes in and sits down across from the open-mouthed executives.
In classic Sean Connery style, he belts out in his Scottish brogue: “This boy is doing a good job, and you’re living in your Disney fucking ivory tower and we need more fucking money!” Without missing a beat, they responded. “OK – How much?”
He did it because he loved movies. He loved excellence and doing the best he could. His work ethic was bar none. The best I’ve ever experienced.”
They certainly don’t make codgers like this anymore.
Sean Connery is survived by his longtime wife Micheline Roquebrune – who only recently revealed he had been grappling with dementia prior to his death in these past few years.