Today's Article - Oddjob

This article is for quizzes on Monday August 10th...

Oddjob (often written as "Odd Job") is a henchman to the villain Auric Goldfinger in the James Bond film and novel, Goldfinger. In the film he was played by the American actor Harold Sakata. Oddjob, who also appears in the James Bond animated series and in several video games, is one of the most popular characters in the Bond series.
In the beginning of the film, Oddjob is first seen only via silhouette against a wall as he knocks Bond unconscious at the Fontainebleau Hotel, after which he or Goldfinger kills Jill Masterson (with whom Bond had spent the night) through "skin suffocation" by painting her entire body with gold paint. (Anatomically speaking, having one's entire body coated with paint would not cause suffocation.)

When Bond meets Goldfinger for a round of golf, Oddjob is seen in full for the first time. He is described by Goldfinger as "an admirable manservant but mute". He only has four lines of 'dialogue' throughout the film: in his first line, upon pretending to have found Goldfinger's missing golf ball, he exclaims "Aha!" The second time, after killing Tilly Masterson, he instructs his men to dispose of her body by merely pointing at them and saying "Ah! Ah!" The third time, he says "Ah!" to order Bond to put on a gas mask before entering Fort Knox. The fourth time, as Bond electrocutes him in Fort Knox, he yells out a final long, loud "Arrgh!"

The prop used in Goldfinger by Oddjob was made by British hat makers, Lock & Co. The bowler hat was then adapted by inserting a chakram into the brim. Oscar winning special effects legend John Stears was responsible for making the hat fly.

After Goldfinger, the hat came into the possession of the James Bond Fan Club. In 1998, the hat was auctioned at Christie's in a sale of James Bond memorabilia. The hat sold for £62,000. In 2002, the hat was lent out for an exhibition at the National Museum of Photography, Film and Television in Bradford, commemorating the 40th anniversary of the release of Dr. No. The hat was then auctioned again in 2006, when the final price was $36,000.

Replicas of the hat are sought after by collectors and replicas have been used as centrepieces for some exhibitions. In 2008, one replica joined Bond exhibition at the National Motor Museum.

The television show MythBusters tested out the capabilities of Oddjob's weaponized thrown hat, testing whether or not it would have been able to decapitate a stone statue. It failed to do so, and the Mythbusters ultimately labeled it 'Busted'.


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