London, September 22 (ANI): Nikki van der Zyl, who was the voice behind the seductive utterances of many of James Bond’s most glamorous conquests, has revealed that she has been banned from attending events marking 50 years of 007 films because her presence might embarrass Shirley Eaton.
Next month marks the 50th anniversary of the premiere of ‘Dr No’ and a number of events are being held to mark the occasion buy der Zyl says she has been barred from the celebrations and has had her name removed from an official Bond website.
She claims the dispute started over an event in London on Thursday celebrating ‘Goldfinger’.
The organisers of Goldfinger Day withdrew an invitation to her, saying that Eaton had ‘been difficult’ about her attending.
When she protested, another invitation to a Bond convention in November was also withdrawn. Then, an official Bond website Bondstars removed her name from its list of contributors, effectively erasing her role in the films.
“In the past 50 years, I’ve had no acknowledgement of my work. The costume designer and the set designer get credits on the closing sequences, but my role was never recognised,” the Daily Mail quoted her as saying.
“It’s like they want to pretend I never even existed because some of the Bond girls are sensitive about their voices,” she said.
Following the withdrawal of van der Zyl’s invitation to the Goldfinger event, officials from Bondstars, a company based at Pinewood which markets official 007 merchandise, wrote to her in July to end its association with her.
“There have always been sensitivities involved with actors in the series who were dubbed,” the letter read.
Miss van der Zyl, of Whetstone, North London, said that she had originally been asked to speak on Goldfinger Day.
“Originally, the organisers were very keen to work with me when they asked me to speak at Goldfinger Day,” she said.
“But two months later, they phoned to say it was off because Shirley Eaton didn’t want me there. I was very angry initially. Many of the Bond girls built their careers on their performances in the films, which in part was due to my voice.
‘I don’t want much, just professional recognition,” she said.
Thomas Bowington, organiser of Goldfinger Day, also commented.
“Nikki is a wonderful person, but unfortunately she has alienated so many people by saying negative things about them in interviews,” Bowington said.
“Shirley was the very first person I asked to attend this event and the momentum built around her. People come to see Shirley Eaton, not Nikki van der Zyl,” he added. ANI)