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Ren
Character information
Name(s): Victor Zokas
Alias(es): Renard The Anarchist
Age: 37
Born: 1962
Soviet Union
Died: December 1999
Bosphorus, Istanbul
Hair/eye color: Hazel (Eyes), Brown (Hair)
Height/weight: 5'7" (Height), 139 lbs. (Weight)
Dist. Features: Bullet wound on right temple
Ptosis in right eye
Inability to feel pain
Nationality: Russian
Occupation: Anarchist Terrorist
Affiliation: Independent, Elektra King,
KGB (Formerly)
Status: Deceased - Impaled by a Plutonium Rod
Behind the scenes
Role: Main Villain
Portrayed By: Robert Carlyle
First Appearance: The World Is Not Enough (Film)
Last Appearance: The World Is Not Enough (Film)
"You can't kill me. I'm already dead."
― Renard alludes to the bullet lodged in his head.[src]

Victor Zokas, commonly known as Renard, is a fictional Russian terrorist and one of the two main villains in the 1999 James Bond film The World Is Not Enough. He was portrayed by Scottish actor Robert Carlyle.

Film biography

Spoiler warning: This article contains spoilers! Plot and/or ending details follow.


Background

Victor Zokas was originally trained by the KGB and served as an assassin during the Cold War until he was expelled due to his mental instability. Afterwards, Zokas adopted the alias of "Renard" and became one of the world's most vicious and feared terrorists. When he abducted billionaire heiress Elektra King for ransom, MI6 sent Agent 009 to Syria where he was to rescue Elektra and kill Renard. Elektra managed to escape Renard's clutches before 009's arrival, nevertheless 009 ended up locating Renard and shot him in the head. Although a doctor was able to save Renard's life, he could not remove the bullet; as a result, the bullet remained inside his skull and would eventually kill him as it progressed into his brain. But until that point it would render Renard virtually invulnerable, numbing his senses and leaving him immune to pain, allowing him to push himself further than the ordinary human limits.

Scheme

Renard attack

Renard secures the plutonium and makes his escape.

During Elektra King's kidnapping, Elektra managed to gain Renard's trust and became his ally and lover. After discovering that the same bullet which granted him superhuman abilities would also take his life, Renard had one last mission in life: he vowed to help Elektra get revenge on her father and take over his oil empire. In return, Elektra would help Renard exact his own vengeance upon the woman who had sentenced him to death, Sir Robert King's old friend: M. After Sir Robert's murder, MI6 suspected Renard of being behind the attack and a guilt ridden M sent 007 to protect Elektra who had been predicted to be Renard's next target.

"She's beautiful isn't she? You should have had her before, when she was innocent. How does it feel, to know that I broke her in for you?"
― Renard mocks Bond, referring to Elektra King.[src]
"A man tires of being executed ... but then again, there's no point in living if you can't feel alive."
― Held at gunpoint, Renard uses a phrase belonging to Elektra.[src]

While tracking Renard's activities, Bond caught him at a nuclear arms facility in Kazakhstan. After a tense standoff, Renard soon escaped with six kilos of weapons-grade plutonium and reunited with Elektra back in Istanbul. Elektra provided Renard with a Victor III-class, nuclear submarine; now with both major elements obtained, Renard and Elektra's plan was about to go full-circle.

That night, Renard professed to Elektra of his dissatisfaction in not being able to feel, barely capable of remembering the sensation of pleasure. This signaled that his time alive was now running short but in the end it would all be worth it, the plan to destroy the Bosphorus with a nuclear explosion would not only be a parting gift to the woman he loved, but it would also bring him the satisfaction of bringing about the ultimate act of chaos: The destruction of 8 million lives and the crippling the world's oil economy in one fell swoop.

Death

The World is Not Enough - Renard impaled

Renard meets his end when he is impaled by the plutonium rod.

The next morning Renard gave his heartfelt goodbye to Elektra and boarded the vessel that would lead him to his imminent death. Onboard the submarine, the plutonium was melted down into a reactor rod that Renard planned on inserting into the submarine's reactor core. Unbeknownst to him however, Bond had snuck aboard and due to a fire fight between the British spy and Renard's henchmen, the sub was sent crashing down into the sea-floor.

Renard locked himself inside the reactor and prepared to proceed with his objective, but Bond further attempted to sabotage the terrorist's plans by engaging him in combat. After receiving news from Bond of Elektra's demise, an enraged Renard began to pummel his foe and locked him below the reactor. Despite the fact that destroying Istanbul was now pointless, Renard chose to go ahead anyway with the mission. As he inserted the plutonium rod into the reactor, Bond was quick to use his wits and connected a loose pressurized air-hose to the reactor.

Bond then looked over to Renard and Proclaimed that Elektra was "waiting for him" and launched the rod at breakneck speed into Renard's black heart, ending his reign of terror once and for all.

Henchmen & Associates

Personality & appearance

Renard is an extremely sinister and sadistic man, showing hardly any emotion or remorse. He enjoys toying with his victims, such as when he watched with amusement as he burned Davidov's hand with a searing coal. Most often his henchmen who fail him will rather opt to committing suicide than face his wrath. Although his depravement of senses made him nearly invincible, he suffered depression from not being able to feel anything, and even felt alienated towards Elektra due to him not being able to make love to her.

Rather short when compared to Bond's stature, Renard is still a very physically imposing man. A neatly shaved head, dark eyes with harsh crow's feet, and various scars give Renard's facial features the distinct likeness of a human skull. It also appears that as a result of the loss of his senses, the right side of Renard's face (the same side containing the bullet wound) has been stricken with Bell's Palsy, which has also caused noticeable Ptosis in the eye. When not in disguise, Renard's usual garb of choice is a black leather double-breasted coat, worn over a black polo-neck sweater, and black or grey cargo trousers.

Trivia

  • Renard is the French name for "fox", which is a play on the alias of real life terrorist: Carlos "The Jackal" Sanchez. This reflects the first draft of the character, who was French and named Claude Serrault.
  • There was much more emphasis on the deterioration of his complexion in the script, as Renard's dead eye was described to droopier with every passing scene. The novelization of the film took this even further by establishing that it was a physical side effect of the Bell's Palsy brought on by the bullet's damage to his cerebral neurons.
  • His pain-killing brain injury was originally written for Stamper in Tomorrow Never Dies and used in that film's novelization.
  • It appears that Renard pays somewhat of a physical homage to Donald Pleasence's portrayal of fellow Bond Villain: Ernst Stavro Blofeld; as both posses a shaved head, disfigured right eye, and a penchant for high collared apparel.
  • His surname is most likely a tribute to production coordinator, Elena Zokas, who worked on every Bond film during Pierce Brosnan's tenure.

Images

References

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