As a journalist before and after World War II, and as a naval intelligence officer during World War II, Fleming picked up facts, ideas, and stories that he would later use in his series of thrillers.
In an earlier post - http://pauldavisoncrime.blogspot.com/2010/03/interplay-between-truth-and-fiction-ian.html - I wrote about Ian Fleming's interplay between fact and fiction.
In the post I linked to a Ben Macintyre piece in The Times of London that covered the true origins of Fleming's characters James Bond and Auric Goldfinger and the plot of his thriller Goldfinger.
Now the British newspaper The Telegraph has written an interesting piece that suggests that Paul Dehn, a British screenwriter and former World War II intelligence officer, followed in Fleming's footsteps and based the opening sequence in the classic 1964 film thriller Goldfinger on a true espionage case in World War II.
"It is one of James Bond's most famous scenes, showing the agent at his deadliest – and most dapper," writes The Telegraph.
"Emerging from the water in a wetsuit, he knocks out a sentry and plants explosives before unzipping his suit to reveal a pristine dinner jacket underneath. He then walks into the nearest bar, glances at his watch and nonchalantly lights a cigarette just as the storage tanks erupt into flames behind him."
The scene was not in the Ian Fleming novel, and the newspaper reports that Jeremy Duns, a British author researching his new book, has discovered that a Dutch spy used an almost identical technique to get into Nazi-occupied Netherlands.
You can read The Telegraph's piece via the below link:
Goldfinger offers a good number of indelible images from the Fleming thriller; including the girl murdered by painting her body gold, the tense, highly competive golf game between Goldfinger and Bond, the hulking figure of Oddjob, Goldfinger's manservant, who kills people by tossing his hat with a deadly metal rim, and the bold assault on Fort Knox.
I've been an Ian Fleming aficionado since I first saw Dr. No as a teenager in the early 1960s and then went on to read and reread the Fleming's novels. I've also seen Goldfinger at least 30 times since I first saw the film in 1964.