The world said Auf Wiedersehen to screen legend Sean Connery this week after the actor passed away aged 90, at his home in the Bahamas.
As with the passing of any star, celebrities and fans took to social media to share stories and pen tributes. In the case of one of the filmmakers that had the opportunity to work with the former Bond star, there’s a story that shows just how powerful Sean Connery really was.
In a tribute for The Hollywood Reporter, Transformers director Michael Bay, shared some fond memories of working with Connery on the 1996 blockbuster The Rock. The hit film saw Connery and Nicolas Cage break into Alcatraz and lead a counter-strike against a rogue group of military men, led by a renegade general, immortalised on the silver screen by Ed Harris. As far as Michael Bay films go, it’s one of his best!
According to Bay, it wasn’t just Connery’s acting prowess and charisma that made The Rock possible. In one story the director writes how Connery helped him ensure that Disney, the studio behind the film, gave them the money they needed to complete it.
Here’s what Bay had to say:
“‘The Rock.’ Car chase: Sean driving and I’m alone filming him. He slams the brakes; my head hits the window. He says, ‘You OK?’ I say, ‘No, the Disney folks are here to kick my butt for being two days over schedule.’ Sean, with that sly look, says, ‘You want me to help?’ Cut to: Having lunch with the Disney execs in a third-grade classroom, sitting at tiny tables and chairs. We looked like giants. I announce that Mr. Connery would like to visit and say hi. Sean comes in, sits down across from the open-mouthed executives.
“In classic Sean Connery style, he belts out in his Scottish brogue: ‘This boy is doing a good job, and you’re living in your Disney Fucking Ivory Tower and we need more fucking money!!’ Without missing a beat, they responded. ‘OK. How much?’”
Bay ended his tribute with, “He did it because he loved movies. He loved excellence and doing the best he could. His work ethic was bar none, the best I’ve ever experienced.”