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English - In the spotlight

Bond reveals all

The secrets behind Britain's most famous secret agent are revealed in the Barbican's new exhibition entitled Designing 007: Fifty Years of Bond Style.

What is it?

The exhibition explores the design and style of the movies from Dr No (1962) to the latest Bond saga, Skyfall (due for release later in the year) and features set designs, James Bond's cars and gadgets, and many of the key characters' original costumes. It also explains how the stunning action scenes and title sequences are created.

Pupils can see how older costumes have influenced the modern, with a faithful replica of Sean Connery's pale blue Thunderball shorts alongside the scene-stealing swimming trunks worn by Daniel Craig in Casino Royale. There are also original drawings, models and storyboards. For motor mad Bond fans, there is also the miniature white "Wet Nellie" Lotus Esprit from The Spy Who Loved Me, Pierce Brosnan's BMW motorcycle from Tomorrow Never Dies, and the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 that returned to the screen for GoldenEye.

Why is it useful?

This is a good case study for media students studying British cinema and a great introduction to film production for English and media classes. The exhibition runs from 6 July to 5 September (www.barbican.org.ukfilm).

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