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James Bond villains are the heroes of new exhibit

Published on Nov 18, 2012 9:51 AM

WASHINGTON (AFP) - Where would James Bond be without Dr. No, Goldfinger or the statuesque May Day? Agent 007 may be a hero, but in this new exhibit in the US capital the bad guys are the stars of the show.

"Exquisitely Evil: 50 years of Bond Villains," which opened on Friday for a two-year run at the International Spy Museum, recounts a half century of these infamous adversaries, from Dr. No in the 1962 film of the same name, to Raoul Silva in "Skyfall," the just-released 23rd Bond film.

Reflecting the real-life Cold War animosity between the United States and the Soviet Union, the evil Blofeld, head of the global crime network Spectre, tried to pit the superpowers against each other.

In the 1970s, Karl Stromberg and Hugo Drax threatened the world with nuclear weapons in The Spy Who Loved Me and Moonraker, while drug kingpins reigned in Live And Let Die, and License to Kill. "Where Bond remains the same, over 50 years the villains have changed - they've changed to reflect changing times," said Meg Simmonds, archive director at Eon Productions, the company that makes the films and an advisor for the exhibit.

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