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Francisco Scaramanga was the “Man with the Golden Gun.” This was to be Ian Fleming’s twelfth and last James Bond novel (he died of a heart attack on August 12, 1964, at age 56). In the book, published in 1965, Scaramanga used a gold-plated Colt Single Action revolver. In the 1974 film version starring Roger Moore as Bond, the Golden Gun was to become one of the most innovative pistols ever devised: a single-shot, modular gun chambered in a unique 4.2mm caliber and comprised of parts that looked like a harmless, gold-plated cigarette case, lighter, pen and cufflink, but when assembled they turned into the villain’s signature weapon.

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The one-of-a-kind pistol (there were actually several made for the film, each slightly different depending upon use) was manufactured with the assistance of Colibri Lighters of London. In the film there was also a nod to the original Fleming novel when Christopher Lee (playing Scaramanga) shoots the cork out of a bottle of champagne with a gold-plated Colt Single Action. “A harmless toy,” he says to Bond.

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All that glitters is gold. Auric Goldfinger’s gold-plated Smith & Wesson Model 10 was the other golden gun that figured prominently in the movie and in his own demise. During the final scenes of the film, Goldfinger is making his escape aboard a private jet after Bond has foiled the destruction of Fort Knox. In their final confrontation aboard the jet, Goldfinger fires the S&W at Bond, misses and shatters a window, causing the cabin to depressurize. He is rather dramatically sucked out of the plane! Golden guns zero, PPKs two.

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