Sir Sean Connery, a Scottish actor best known for playing James Bond in seven films, died peacefully in his sleep in the Bahamas at age 90 after being “unwell for some time,” his son, Jason Connery, told the BBC.
No cause of death was immediately reported.
“We are all working at understanding this huge event as it only happened so recently, even though my dad has been unwell for some time,” Jason Connery said. “A sad day for all who knew and loved my dad and a sad loss for all people around the world who enjoyed the wonderful gift he had as an actor.”
Sean Connery Battled Several Health Problems in His Later Years
Connery survived a couple of bouts with cancer in the decades prior to his death. According to the Evening Standard, Connery was found to have cancerous polyps in his throat in 1986 and battled with the condition for years. In 1995, Connery revealed to Entertainment Weekly that he underwent radiation therapy in 1993 after previously having the polyps “lasered” off.
More than a decade later, Connery had a tumor removed from his kidney in March 2006, according to The Guardian.
In 2013, German newspaper Bild am Sonntag reported that Connery had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, according to the Luxembourg Times, but actor Michael Caine blasted the report as untrue.
“It’s all bulls***, completely preposterous,” Caine said, via The Mirror. “I haven’t seen Sean for a couple of years, but my wife and I spoke to him on the phone on his birthday this week and he was very well. He was fine, in complete control of his senses and his usual self. This stuff about Alzheimer’s is just nonsense. I have no idea where they are getting it from.”
Connery retired from public appearances in 2011, according to the Daily Express, and spent his final years rarely leaving his home in the Bahamas. He was spotted in New York City in 2017 by the Daily Mail, walking with a cane and a caregiver. Connery wasn’t spotted in public again until August 2020 when The Sun spotted him playing golf near his home in Nassau.
Stars & Dignitaries Mourn the Loss of Connery
The news of Connery’s death has made ripples around the world. First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon released a statement shortly after BBC reported the news.
“I was heartbroken to learn this morning of the passing of Sir Sean Connery,” Sturgeon tweeted. “Our nation today mourns one of her best loved sons. Sean was born into a working class Edinburgh family and through talent & sheer hard work, became an international film icon and one of the world’s most accomplished actors.”
Michael G. Wilson and Barbara Broccoli, producers of several films in the James Bond franchise, also released a statement:
We are devastated by the news of the passing of Sir Sean Connery He was and shall always be remembered as the original James Bond whose indelible entrance into cinema history began when he announced those unforgettable words: ‘The name’s Bond… James Bond’ — he revolutionised the world with his gritty and witty portrayal of the sexy and charismatic secret agent. He is undoubtedly largely responsible for the success of the film series and we shall be forever grateful to him.
There was no shortage of movie stars who looked up to and admired Connery:
Connery is survived by his wife, Micheline Roquebrune; his son, Jason; and his three stepchildren Oliver, Micha and Stephane.