Tania Mallet: Life and Career of The Goldfinder Bond Girl

Tania Mallet

Tania Mallet, an English actress and model best known for being a Bond Girl –has passed at the age of 77.

Tania Mallet played Tilly Masterson in the 1964 James Bond classic Goldfinger, opposite Sean Connery.

Born May 19, 1941 in Blackpool, United Kingdom; to British father Henry Mallet and Russian mother Olga Mironoff. Her parents divorced and her mother re-married. She had one brother and other relatives include actress Helen Mirren –who was her first cousin.

Mallet began her career as a model and later transitioned to acting only to return to modeling again. She attended the Lucy Clayton School of modeling.  As a model she appeared on the cover of Vogue and made enough money to help her mother and pay for her brother’s education. She began modeling in her teens and became one of the most recognizable models of the late 1950s and early 1960s.

Tania Mallet

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As an actress she auditioned for the part of Tatiana Romanova in 1963’s From Russia with Love but was unsuccessful. She landed the role of Tilly Masterson after her photo was sent to the director. Goldfinder was Mallet’s only major film. It was reported she abandoned acting due to the restrictions she was imposed on her creativity and the low income.

In fact, during an interview she said doing the film was a real ‘sacrifice’ since the wasn’t allowed to travel and also revealing she was offered 50 pounds a week for the movie, which she got the producers to increase to about $200. However, she still earned more than that in a day modeling.

Other work for Millet includes appearing in the 1976 television series, The New Avengers and in the Michael Winner documentary Girls Girls Girls.

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It is not clear if she was ever married or if she had any children of her own. Helen Mirren described her on her 2007 memoir as a ‘loyal and gorgeous person.’