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

Fictional area of the Caribbean Sea, not far from Nassau in the Bahamas, that is the habitat for an especially deadly species of shark in Thunderball. It’s also where Emilio Largo (Adolfo Celi) hides his hijacked British nuclear bomber.

After a prolonged NATO search of the Atlantic fails to find the bomber, Bond (Sean Connery) and Felix Leiter (Rik Van Nutter) are about to end their own search when their helicopter passes over an area that Leiter identifies as the Golden Grotto. Remembering that Largo’s sharks are of the Golden Grotto variety, Bond realizes that they’ve found their prize at last.

For the scene in which Bond is trapped in Largo’s pool with his Golden Grotto sharks, Connery really did film underwater alongside the creatures, which were actually tiger sharks. Underwater cinematographer Lamar Boren explained, “Those sharks weren’t drugged, nor were their jaws wired. They were the real thing, and Sean was depending on us to keep him out of trouble. But you really don’t have to worry about sharks anyway, unless there’s blood in the water or a lot of garbage. . . . The sharks were very sluggish. They ended up ignoring Sean and just swimming around.”[1]

[1] Lamar Boren, interview by Steven Jay Rubin, La Jolla, CA, August 17, 1976.


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