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Auric Goldfinger (Gert Fröbe)

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James Bond: "Do you expect me to talk?"
Auric Goldfinger: "No, Mr. Bond. I expect you to die."
―James Bond and Auric Goldfinger[src]

Auric Goldfinger is the primary villain of the 1959 Ian Fleming novel Goldfinger and its 1964 film adaptation. He was portrayed by German actor Gert Fröbe and voiced by Michael Collins.

Film biography

Arguably the most famous James Bond villain in any film, Goldfinger's obsession is gold. In fact, Goldfinger is a gold smuggler, accomplishing this feat by having a workable car built out of gold and transporting it via airplane. Once the car arrived at its destination, Goldfinger would have it melted down. Goldfinger is also an avid golfer who plays with a Slazenger 1 golf ball. He is defeated by Bond, however, when he is tricked by Bond after attempting to cheat.

Auric Goldfinger owned many properties throughout the world including "Auric Enterprises, A.G", which was the headquarters for most of his smuggling operations. Located in Switzerland, it is where Bond nearly gets cut in half by an industrial laser when Goldfinger has him strapped to a table.

Goldfinger also owned a farm in Kentucky that was used for horse breeding called "Auric Stud".

Scheme

DeathofGoldfinger

Goldfinger is sucked out of the depressurizing airplane.

Thinking that Goldfinger was planning to steal the gold, Bond convinced the leader of the female pilots of Goldfinger, Pussy Galore, to help him thwart Goldfinger's plans, but he was shocked to learn that Goldfinger was not planning to steal from Fort Knox, but to destroy it instead. He planned to plant a radioactive bomb inside the fort, which would render all the gold on it worthless, thus valorizing Goldfinger's gold and making him the richest man in the world. He sends the pilots to spread a nerve gas on the vicinity of the fort, allowing him to enter the fort without resistance.

Oddjob carries the bomb inside, and Bond manages to sneak in as well, but the two are trapped inside the vault with the bomb. Oddjob fights Bond, but is electrocuted while trying to take his hat out of a grate. Bond manages to flee the place with the bomb, being helped by the guards of the fort who never died because the gas used by the pilots was not lethal, as Goldfinger had planned. Goldfinger leaves the scene while his men and Oddjob die fighting the U.S. forces. After the battle is won, Bond is sent to Washington in a private jet to meet the president, only to find out that Goldfinger has boarded the plane earlier, left the tied up pilot in the hangar and had Pussy Galore pilot the jet. During a moment of carelessness, Goldfinger is attacked by Bond and the two fight in the airplane. During the fight, Goldfinger accidentally shoots a window of the cabin and is sucked out of the plane and falls to his death.

Henchmen & Associates

Video game appearances

007 Legends - Goldfinger (1)

Goldfinger as he appears in 2012's 007 Legends.

Goldfinger appears as a playable multiplayer character in Nightfire and GoldenEye.

Auric Goldfinger was brought back to life in the 2004 Electronic Arts video game GoldenEye: Rogue Agent. In the game Goldfinger recruits the player character, a former secret agent ousted by MI6. Goldfinger is also an ally of Francisco Scaramanga, the villain of The Man with the Golden Gun. In this game, Goldfinger's scientists develop what is considered to be the deadliest weapon known to mankind: the OMEN (Organic Mass Energy Neutralizer), and plans to use it against his rival, Dr. Julius No. He is eventually killed when GoldenEye and Scaramanga discover his betrayal and use the OMEN against him.

The character also appeared in the 2012 video game 007 Legends, with the likeness of Gert Fröbe and voiced by Timothy Watson (who also provides the voice of Daniel Craig's Bond).

Behind the scenes

His first name, Auric, is an adjective meaning of goldIan Fleming chose the name to commemorate the architect Erno Goldfinger who had built his home in Hampstead next door to Fleming; Fleming disliked Goldfinger's style of architecture and destruction of Victorian terraces and decided to name a memorable villain after him. The architect was not pleased to find the character sharing his name and contacted his lawyers; he eventually settled for, among other things, the promise that the character's first name Auric would always be used.

Auric Goldfinger was played by Gert Fröbe. Consequently, Goldfinger was banned in Israel after it was revealed that Fröbe was a member of the Nazi party. The ban, however, was lifted many years later when a Jewish family publicly thanked Fröbe for protecting them from persecution during World War II. Gert Fröbe, who did not speak English, was dubbed by Michael Collins, an English actor. Of his role as Goldfinger, Fröbe later remarked: "I am a big man, and I have a laugh to match my size. The ridiculous thing is that since I played Goldfinger in the James Bond film there are some people who still insist on seeing me as a cold, ruthless villain - a man without laughs."

Quotes

"No, Mr. Bond. I expect you to die."
― Goldfinger's iconic response to Bond's "Do you expect me to talk?"[src]

Trivia

  • Goldfinger is one of the most iconic Bond villains in history - due in part to the legendary "Goldfinger" theme, which has been considered by many as one of the best themes to any Bond film.
  • Originally, the main villain in Diamonds Are Forever was supposed to be Goldfinger's twin brother, but Fröbe refused to play him, so he was replaced by Ernst Stavro Blofeld.
  • In the film Goldfinger's automobile has the license plate "AU 1". Au is the symbol on the periodic table for the element gold, named after the Latin word Aurum, which means Gold. This also partially explains why Goldfinger's first name is Auric.
  • The voice of Goldfinger was dubbed due to Gert Fröbe's heavy German accent.
  • In 2003, the American Film Institute declared Auric Goldfinger the 49th greatest villain in in the past 100 years of film.
  • Goldfinger has some of the most known Henchmen, such as Oddjob and Pussy Galore.
  • He is the first independent main Bond villain in the film, though his book counterpart is the treasurer of S.M.E.R.S.H..
  • Goldfinger was initially banned in Israel due to Gert Fröbe's past affiliation with the Nazi Party. However, Fröbe had left the party before World War II, and the ban was lifted several years later after it came to light that he had helped two Jews by letting them hide in his basement during the war.
  • He is the inspiration of the villain Goldmember in the third Austin Powers film.

Gallery

See also

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