Sir Kenneth Adam, OBE, born Klaus Hugo Adam in 1921, is a production designer famous for his set designs for the James Bond films of the 1960s and 1970s. Initially, he trained as an architect in London, but in October 1943, he became one of only two German-born fighter pilots to fly with the RAF in wartime. He joined 609 Squadron where he flew the Hawker Typhoon fighter bomber. After the war, he entered the film industry, initially as a draughtsman on This Was a Woman. His portfolio of work includes Barry Lyndon and The Madness of King George; he won an Oscar for both films. Having a close relationship with Stanley Kubrick, he also designed the set for the iconic war room in Dr Strangelove. Sir Ken Adam was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2003.
When the film... came out nobody believed that we hadn't shot it on real location, so that was a compliment to me. I even had at Athelhampton – because I used Athelhampton for entries and exits – but I had to build a maze there. I don't know if you saw the film, but the film starts in a maze so we built the maze at Athelhampton, and the maze was at least, if I remember rightly, 7ft high, and of course it created enormous problems how to shoot it, and I think we used the first sort of cam on a... on a crane, you know, controlled by somebody on the ground. So Mankiewicz could… we could have tracking shots and all that, because otherwise you wouldn't have seen anybody, you know, unless you had been up on a crane or something, and that worked extremely well too – and it turned out to be a very successful film.