Monday, April 19, 2021

Here’s Why Gladys Knight Refused to Sell Out for James Bond Film

*Seven-time Grammy Award-winner Gladys Knight was tapped to sing the theme of the 1989 film “James Bond 007 Licence To Kill,” after a deal with singer Eric Clapton and musician Vick Flick fell through, ILOSM reports.

But when the studio asked her to do something that would comprise her character, she laid down the law and made it clear that she was not the one.

“Licence to Kill” is the sixteenth installment in the James Bond film series and the last to star Timothy Dalton in the role of James Bond. The film earned over $156 million worldwide.

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Gladys Knight in Milwaukee
Gladys Knight in Milwaukee (Photo: Melissa Miller / PTG Live Events)

Ms. Knight was honored that she was asked to sing the theme song for the classic film, but when studio publicists also requested that she pose in publicity photos with a gun in one hand and an alcohol in the other, the soul music icon had to get them right together.

“I’m going to tell you all now, I can’t hold that gun and I can’t hold that martini. I can stand up here with James Bond, but I cannot hold that gun,” she said.

Gladys later told Jet that she was extremely sensitive to the senseless violence being promoted to Black youth at that time.

“With all of our kids and the gangs, people think they can pick up a gun and shoot people today.”

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Ny MaGee
Ny MaGee is a screenwriter and freelance reporter from Chicago -- currently living in Los Angeles and covering A-list entertainment for various outlets, including Emmys.com. She has worked for: Miramax, MTV & VH1, The Jim Henson Company, Hallmark Channel, Paramount Pictures, and for iconic indie film producer Roger Corman.

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