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Kevin McClory

From Academic Kids

Kevin McClory (b. 1924) is a British screenwriter, producer, and director. McClory is best known for the 1983 James Bond film Never Say Never Again, which was the result of a long legal battle between McClory and Ian Fleming (later MGM) over the writing credits and later the film rights to Thunderball. Ironically, he was not actually involved with making the film as the project had been taken over by that time by the American producer Jack Schwartzman.

Biography

McClory started his film career as a film technician at Shepperton Studios, where he worked as an assistant to John Huston on films including The African Queen (1951) and Moulin Rouge (1952). He later wrote and directed the 1957 film The Boy and the Bridge.

In 1958, McClory met Ian Fleming and they, with Jack Whittingham, collaborated on a number of drafts for a possible film or television series. When the project was scrapped, Fleming took the screenplay and novelized it into his ninth novel, Thunderball in 1961. McClory and Whittingham filed suit and eventually the lawsuit was settled out of court forcing future versions of the novel to be credited as "based on a screen treatment by Kevin McClory, Jack Whittingham, and Ian Fleming". Due to the lawsuit, Thunderball was pushed back as EON Productions first official James Bond film. Albert R. Broccoli and Harry Saltzman would later make a deal with McClory allowing him sole producer credit for the 1965 adaptation. McClory retained the rights to remake the film after ten years had elapsed.

In 1976 McClory announced he was to produce an original James Bond film to be titled either Warhead, Warhead 8, or James Bond of the Secret Service, but the project immediately ran into more legal problems with the Broccoli family and was ultimately abandoned.

Kevin McClory later licenced the film rights for Thunderball to Jack Schwartzman, an entertainment lawyer, who succeeded in getting the film made as Never Say Never Again in 1983 with Sean Connery returning to play the role of James Bond.

Since then, McClory has continued to try to make other adaptations of Thunderball, including most famously a project called Warhead 2000 A.D., that was to be made by Sony. The project was scrapped when a court gave MGM/UA sole control over James Bond on film. In 2004 Sony acquired MGM, however, the production and final say over everything involving the film version of James Bond is controlled by EON Productions, Albert R. Broccoli's production company.

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