Sean Connery Had To Be Restrained From Beating Camera Operator On Zardoz Set


It’s a movie memorable for Sean Connery’s stunning outfit, but now director John Boorman has revealed that ‘Zardoz’ might have become more memorable for an on-set strangling.

The 1974 sci-fi movie starred Connery in his second post-Bond movie performance, playing Zed, a galactic ‘exterminator’ in a post-apocalyptic world.

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Wearing nowt but thigh-high boots and a devastating, futuristic jock-strap, he travelled the galaxy in the luridly indulgent adventure.

But a blunder during one scene, which involved Connery in extensive make-up as his character ages quickly, he almost flipped his lid.


Speaking to Vulture, Boorman recalls that getting Connery to wear the outfit proved to be the least of his worries.

“Well: This is what you’ve got. This is what you’re going to wear. So he’d put it on and say, ‘Okay’. There was never any argument,” he said.

“He was a very explosive character. At the end of the film we shoot a scene where his characters ages rapidly, and with the makeup, that scene took a whole day.


“So we’d shoot a bit, take him out, put on more makeup, shoot a bit more, and so on. When we finished it, we sent the film to the lab, and the lab scratched it. So we had to do it all over again the following day.

“Sean hated makeup, hated anything touching his skin. He was very grumpy the whole day when we shot the scene. So when I told him that we had to do it again, he was absolutely enraged. Enraged!

“At any rate, we did it all over again, all day long, the whole process. And the assistant camera-loader opened the camera and exposed the film. So we had to do the process again.


“Sean wouldn’t believe me; he thought I was teasing him. When I convinced him that we needed to do it for the third time, he went after this camera-loader and nearly killed him. It took three grips to restrain him.”

The movie, which followed Boorman’s classic ‘Deliverance’ and also starred Charlotte Rampling and John Alderton, was, sadly, a financial failure.

However – and perhaps thanks in no small measure to ‘that outfit’ – it’s since become something of a cult classic.

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Image credits: Rex Features