'James Bond' Sir Sean Connery dies at 90

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Connery's final appearance on the silver screen was back in 2012. A Scotsman who could rock a kilt, he possessed cliffhanger eyebrows over piercing eyes.

The Scottish actor rose to global superstardom as the suave and fearless secret agent, first playing Bond in "Dr No" in 1962.

Pinewood Studios, home of the Bond film franchise, said in a statement: "We are extremely saddened to hear of the passing of the legendary Sir Sean Connery".

Alex Salmond said: "The world's greatest Scot, the last of the real Hollywood stars, the definitive Bond".

It was far from his origins. He dropped out of school at age 13. "If I do my job right, people won't ask for their money back", he once famously said. Grabbed this. He hated the film so much he nearly refused till I lied that it was for my young son. He studied Shakespeare, Ibsen, Brecht. Just try to imagine Grant - or indeed anyone but Connery - lurking behind the shuttered bungalow door in Dr No, enjoying a quiet game of Solitaire while waiting for his would-be assassin to arrive. But after the premiere for Dr. No, Fleming was so impressed he wrote Bond as half-Scottish in future books. "Usually I hate interviews because I end up boring myself listening to me talking all the time", Connery said on the amount of press a Bond film warrants.

The characters got older as he did.

"Born in our own Fountainbridge, where he started out as a milkman's apprentice, Sir Sean went on to forge a stellar acting career, scooping an Academy Award, two Baftas and three Golden Globes, among other coveted acting accolades". In 1989 he played Indiana Jones' father, professor Henry Jones.

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Sir Connery celebrated his 90th birthday in August.

He went on to star in subsequent bond films such as From Russia With Love, Goldfinger, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, Diamonds Are Forever. He was an ardent supporter of Scotland's independence and even had the words "Scotland forever" tattooed on his arm when he was serving in the Royal Navy.

"His charity, the Scottish International Education Trust (SIET), has over the years supported thousands of youngsters with a helping hand in their education".

In 1999, he addressed hundreds of party activists before a vote.

When he was knighted at the age of 69 by Britain's Queen Elizabeth in 2000 at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, he wore full Scottish dress including the green-and-black plaid kilt of his mother's MacLeod clan.

Actor Robert Carlyle tweeted: "RIP Sir Sean Connery. a trailblazer, a true legend and a gentleman".

Connery's death certainly comes as a surprise as he was a towering figure who many felt was larger than life itself.

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