The Boots have Stopped Walking. Honor Blackman 1924 – 2020

Written by
  • font size decrease font size increase font size
  • Print
  • Email

Another national treasure has been taken. Honor Blackman, was a woman that many men and women of a certain age admired. Today April 6th, 2020, we were informed by the media that she had died of natural causes at the age of 94. For fans of shows like The Avengers, and the famous James Bond installment, Goldfinger, her passing is one that will be felt keenly. Her roles as Cathy Gale and Pussy Galore are ones that are deeply enshrined in the history of British Television, and Cinema. She was also a stage actress and a singer.

Honor Blackman was born on August 22, 1924, in Plaistow, Essex. At the age of fifteen, on her birthday she was given by her parents acting lessons, and she soon started training at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1940. During the war, she also worked as a clerical assistant for the Home Office.

honor blackman young zani 1

Her film debut was a none speaking part in Fame Is The Spur (1947) From then on she appeared in a few films, during the 1950s, as well as turning to Television work. In 1959 she appeared in The Four Just Men as "Nicole" as Dan Dailey's, Tom Collier's secretary. Then, in 1962 she appeared in an episode of The Saint, called "The Arrow Of God". In this, she again played a secretary, but this time, one who was a murder suspect.

In 1963 she was also in the famous stop motion special effects movie Jason and The Argonauts and played Hera. In the third James Bond movie, after Dr. No, (1962) and From Russia With Love (1963) Honor was cast by producer Albert R (Cubby) Broccoli because of her success in The Avengers. Part of her success in these two memorable roles was that she practiced Judo, and was not adverse to the physicality that the roles demanded. When she was cast as a Bond Girl, she was actually 38, and five years older than Sean Connery.

honor blackman vespa 1

As a television actress, as well as the role of Cathy Gale in The Avengers, she appeared in many dramas, including Columbo, Dagger of The Mind, and a production of the Agatha Christie novel, The Secret Adversary. She also appeared in Doctor Who, "Terror Of The Vervoids." My own clearest memory of her TV work, apart from The Avengers, was in the British sitcom The Upper Hand, where she played the character Laura West. The sitcom ran from 1990 to 1996, and I would often sit down and watch it. She also appeared in some episodes of Never The Twain alongside Windsor Davies and Donald Sinden. She also briefly had a role in a storyline that was running in the long-serving soap opera Coronation Street.

As well as her theatre work, which includes plays and musicals such as appearing in a stage version of The Sound Of Music opposite Petula Clark, she also made some recordings.Her most famous being one she did with her The Avengers Co-star Patrick Macnee. Macnee, who played Steed, sings alongside her. The song called Kinky Boots (1964), became a surprise hit again, charting at number 5 in 1990, thanks to BBC radio Dj Simon Mayo playing it regularly on his radio show. After the success of Goldfinger, she also recorded an album called Everything I've Got.

honor blackman zani 222

She was, without doubt, a woman who was greatly admired for the roles of strong women she played and will be greatly missed, by many of us. Thankfully her work on screen is available for people to see and the legacy of her work is there for people to appreciate.

She was offered a CBE in 2002, which she declined as it did not chime with her personal politics.

Today She died peacefully, surrounded by her family in Lewes, Essex.

honor blackman zani 1

facebook
Twitter
Instagram
Read 509 times Last modified on Monday, 06 April 2020 19:59
Rate this item
(1 Vote)

About Us

ZANI was conceived in late 2008 and the fan base gradually grew by word of mouth. Key contributors came from those of the music, film and fashion industry and the voice of ZANI grew louder. So, when in 2013 investor, contributor and fan of ZANI Alan McGee* offered his support to help restyle and relaunch the site it was inevitable that traffic would increase dramatically and continues to grow. *Alan McGee co-founder of Creation Records and new label 359 Music..

 

What We Do

ZANI is an independent online magazine for readers interested in contemporary culture, covering Music, Film & TV, Sport, Art amongst other cultural topics. Relevant to modern times ZANI is a dynamic website and a flagship for creative movement and thinking wherever our readers live in the world.