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Meeting Kubrick


How Dr No introduced me to Stanley Kubrick
Ken Adam Artist
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Pinewood were fantastic – all the new materials, and everything – and it opened up everything.  It opened me up to go bigger and better with the next picture.  Pinewood were entirely on my side... anybody came up with a new idea.  We hadn’t got any gadgets yet, but that happened really with Goldfinger... but... it was a very effective film,  and because Kubrick ran the film when he came over here from New York, he was so impressed with what I’d done that he rang me and asked me to meet him at the hotel whatever it was, because he was wondering if I would be interested to design his next film, which was a sort of a strange... black comedy called Dr Strangelove, and that’s when I met Stanley and that’s when our relationship started.

Sir Kenneth Adam (1921-2016), OBE, born Klaus Hugo Adam, was 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.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes

Christopher Sykes is an independent documentary producer who has made a number of films about science and scientists for BBC TV, Channel Four, and PBS.

Tags: Pinewod Studios, New York, Goldfinger, Dr Strangelove, Stanley Kubrick

Duration: 1 minute, 25 seconds

Date story recorded: December 2010 and January 2011

Date story went live: 14 October 2011