Love is All You Need: Bond Girl Barbara Bach’s Journey from Hollywood to Her Starry-Eyed Megastar

Barbara Bach, renowned for her portrayal of the Bond girl Triple X, didn’t fit the stereotype of a damsel in distress waiting to be saved by the spy who loved her. Instead, she was seeking her own knight in shining armor, none other than her rocker husband, Sir Richard Starkey, famously known as Ringo Starr. At 75 years old, Bach, an accomplished actor and model, had reached the pinnacle of her career with her memorable role in the 1977 film “The Spy Who Loved Me.” In the movie, she played the love interest and potential adversary to the womanizing secret agent, James Bond, brilliantly portrayed by Roger Moore.

In a 1983 interview with People, Bach candidly referred to Bond as a “chauvinist pig who uses girls to shield him against bullets.” Moore himself agreed with this sentiment, stating in a 1973 interview that both he and Bond shared some chauvinistic traits. He admitted, “All my life I’ve been trying to get women out of brassieres and pants.”

Before her appearance in “The Spy Who Loved Me,” Barbara Bach had established herself through roles in Italian films. Notably, she starred alongside other Bond Girls, Claudine Auger from “Thunderball” (1965) and Barbara Bouchet from “Casino Royale” (1967), in the 1971 Italian murder-mystery film “Black Belly of the Tarantula.” However, it was her captivating performance as a Bond girl that solidified her as a fan favorite and opened doors for her successful acting career.

Following her role as Major Anya Amasova, the fictional KGB character, Bach took on leading roles in films like “Mad Magazine Presents Up the Academy” (1980), directed by Robert Downey Sr., and the slapstick comedy “Caveman” (1981), where she starred alongside Dennis Quaid, Shelley Long, and Ringo Starr, who was 82 at the time. In “Caveman,” Starr played a Neanderthal who initially pursues Lana, portrayed by Bach, but eventually chooses another mate.

Contrary to the screenplay’s story, real-life events were quite different. The truth emerged when Bach and Starr, who were already romantically involved, flew to Mexico for the filming of “Caveman.” Their love blossomed further during the last week of shooting, transitioning from a friendly connection to a deep, romantic relationship. Featured in a 1981 Playboy pictorial, Bach dismissed the various rumors about their relationship, stating that they were each with other people until that transformative week on set.

In a heartwarming interview with the Irish Examiner in 2021, Ringo Starr expressed his affection and admiration for his wife, whom he had married over four decades prior. He recalled the serendipitous moment when he first saw her at LAX in 1980, both on their way to Mexico for the same movie shoot. Starr, renowned as the drummer for The Beatles, the most influential band in history, felt blessed to have Barbara Bach in his life.

Interestingly, Bach had witnessed The Beatles’ iconic performance at New York’s Shea Stadium in 1965, although she confessed that she wasn’t their biggest fan. She attended the concert with her friend Joe Walsh and her sister Marjorie, who was so enamored with the band that she even wore a Beatles wig.

In summary, Barbara Bach’s journey from a Bond girl to a beloved actress and Ringo Starr’s adored wife showcased a real-life love story more captivating than any movie script. Their connection, founded on mutual respect and genuine affection, remains an enduring testament to love’s power.

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