Today marks the birthday of three-time Bond director Lewis Gilbert, who was born on 6th March 1920 in Hackney, London.
Learning his craft in the Royal Air Force film unit, Gilbert was seconded into the US Air Corp film unit during World War 2 and after the war wrote and directed short documentaries before breaking into low budget films in the 1950s.
He later made his name as a director of films such as Reach For the Sky (1956), about legless RAF pilot Douglas Bader and Sink the Bismarck! (1960) and later Alfie (1966) with Michael Caine.
Gilbert was apparently reluctant to take on directorial duties for You Only Live Twice (1967) when first approached by Cubby Broccoli and Harry Saltzman but returned to the 007 series with The Spy Who Loved Me (1977) and Moonraker (1979).
In the 1980s he returned to filming smaller scale films, such as Educating Rita (1983) and Shirley Valentine (1989), both based on plays by Willy Russell.