Contributed by: The James Bond Movie Encyclopedia by Steven Jay Rubin

Heavy bomber developed for the US Army Air Corps in the 1930s, a converted version of which helps rescue 007 (Sean Connery) and Domino (Claudine Auger) in Thunderball. Having obliterated the Disco Volante yacht on the nearby reef, 007 and Domino climb from the water into a life raft dropped by the B-17, inflate its signal balloon, and then strap themselves to a harness connected to the balloon’s cable. The B-17—equipped with a V-shaped metal catcher on its nose—then snags the balloon, which lifts Bond and Domino skyward and into the rescue plane. It’s not the most dignified form of rescue, but it nonetheless provides a rousing conclusion to what is by some measures still the most popular James Bond film of all time.


Subscribe on your favorite podcast app