What they are saying ...

In fact, it is van der Zyl's beautiful, very slightly accented voice that millions of fans associate with Andress, rather than her own gratingly thick, chokingly accented sibilation. More text
John Howard Reid (Film Noir, Detective and Mystery Movies on DVD: A Guide to the Best in Suspense)

She [Claudine Auger], too, was completely dubbed for the film. Nikki van der Zyl, who provided the voice, did momentous work on the Bond films from Dr No through to The Man with the Golden Gun. Her voice work is utterly charming, just perfect for the part. John Cork in Bond Goes Wide: Remembering Thunderball on its 50th Anniversary

I created a film in which Nikki, who had always been invisible in the Bond universe, reads the complete lines of Ursula's character - and becomes visible. More text
Interview with Taryn Simon, Playboy July/August 2014 (PDF)

Cubby Broccoli described the Bond stories as "nonsense - pure entertainment. We emphasize all the way that it is completely unreal." New York Times, 1964

A special and significant mention must be given to Nikki van der Zyl here, who provides the lovely voice to accompany Andress's performance. Van der Zyl realizes verbally what Andress expressed physically, giving Honey's voice a great melody and innocence while also revealing the dark past and vengeful nature of the woman in her intonations during her private talk with Bond.
Bond & The Girl

Since movies are generally dubbed in Germany and I am a fan of many voice actors, especially in the world of 007, I do not understand at all the form of hate Nikki experienced.
The actresses she provided her voice for still portray the character, their name and visuals are what is associated with, for example, Jill Masterson, "The Golden Girl". So - who cares? And in many countries they are dubbed, anyway by others ... I don't get it - I never thought that steals "any thunder" of these actresses but enhanced the final movie.
Sean Craig, Germany MI6

[Taryn Simon's] film Honey Ryder (Nikki van der Zyl), 1962 documents the work of Nikki van der Zyl, who lent her voice to the overdubbing of a dozen major and minor characters in nine 007 movies from 1962 to 1979. On the screen, van der Zyl reads from a script, spotlit in front of a plain white wall, dressed simply in a cream blouse and beige pants. This uncomplicated and underproduced scene is the opposite of a Bond film, yet it manifestly reveals the ventriloquism necessary to create cinematic fiction, how fantasy manipulates fact and transforms it into something richer.
Daily Serving

... from the moment Under the Mango Tree begins on the Dr No soundtrack, [Nikki's] cinematic immortality was assured. Andrew Roberts, The Independent, Oct 2015

... while Claudine Auger’s Domino is a physically impressive looking woman, especially in her black & white bikini (Domino - geddit!), it’s her voice, dubbed by Nikki van der Zyl, that really carries off the performance of a vulnerable young woman who has drifted into shady company and been seduced by Largo’s "good life," becoming a powerful and dangerous criminal’s plaything; a "kept woman," as she tells Bond. Graham Rye in Bond Goes Wide: Remembering Thunderball on its 50th Anniversary

In Dr No, she [Andress] looked great as Honey Ryder, emerging from the sea in her white bikini, but looking great was the limit of her contribution. Her Swiss accent was so strong that every line she delivers was dubbed by an actress called Nikki van der Zyl, who in true Bond-style has an alias; she’s often referred to as ‘Monica’. Despite the fact that she herself was German, van der Zyl’s impeccable voice skills got her the job of revoicing not just Andress but every other female character in the film other than Miss Moneypenny and a Chinese girl. Not content with that (and despite the fact that her fee was a paltry £150), van der Zyl went on to overdub various female voices in every Bond film up to The Man with the Golden Gun, including Shirley Eaton in Goldfinger and some of Jane Seymour’s lines in Live and Let Die.
Bluffers Guide - The troubled lives of the Bond girls

Nikki van der Zyl is truly a contender for the titile of the ultimate Bond Girl, and she has never even appeared in any of the movies. But the voices that fans think belong to Ursula Andress, Eunice Gayson, Shirley Eaton, Mie Hama and so many others have all been dubbed by van der Zyl.
Robert Michael Bobb Cotter (The Women of Hammer Horror: A Biographical Dictionary and Filmography)


Roger Moore on his Official Site

Miss van der Zyl was known as "One-take Nikki" and was highly respected by everyone. She did dubbing for dozens of other films, too, including "The Battle of Britain" - with a rare instance of actually getting credited in that film.
I'm a big believer that the "little people" who do so much in the world behind the scenes should get credit for their contributions. That is not to belittle Miss van der Zyl, but to acknowledge that she never once was mentioned by the production staff to the media, never once appeared in any credits, never once spoke up about herself to the media about what she was doing at the time - but she was a fixture behind the scenes on just about every Bond film from "Dr. No" in 1962 through "Moonraker" in 1979. James Bond Film Review, 2014

She was excellent at it, that's why she got the work over and over again. The Bond girls are famous not only for their looks but their voices. Monica [Nikki] helped create some of the most iconic female characters of the series. Graham Rye, editor 007magazine

[The 50 Greatest Voice Performances In Movies] . . Nikki Van Der Zyl's exotic voice performance as Honey Ryder in Dr No (Ursula Andress merely supplied the visuals...) This performance provided the blueprint for the Bond girl image of the 60s. Van Der Zyl also voiced many of the other female characters in this film - making it one of the great feats of voice performance work. Empire Online

Speaking of Nikki, she’s there in the [Diamonds Are Forever] pre-credits sequence, voicing the woman Bond chokes with her own bikini (less Fifty Shades Of Grey than it sounds.) Poor Nikki. Ever the unseen bridesmaid – did nobody think to get the woman in front of the camera, just this once? The woman she voices is literally in the film for thirty seconds. Couldn’t they have chucked her the part for services rendered? denofgeek - James Bond 007

Ursula Andress as Honey Ryder would be unmemorable if she weren’t the first. Seriously. She is dubbed over by Nikki van der Zyl, a rabbi’s daughter who would dub over many voices in the early days of the Bond series. Eunice Gayson plays the aggressive love interest Sylvia Trench (and is also dubbed by van der Zyl). Ron Gordon - Bond Rankings by a Moderate Nerd

[Taryn] Simon also created a film that takes as its subject Nikki van der Zyl, the most prolific agent of substitution in the Bond franchise. From 1962 to 1979, van der Zyl, an unseen and uncredited performer, provided voice dubs for over a dozen major and minor characters throughout nine Bond films. Invisible until now, van der Zyl further underscores the interplay of substitution and repetition in the preservation of myth and the construction of fantasy. Gagosian Gallery, Beverley Hills

... countless other female characters - were all given the van der Zyl treatment in between 1962 and 1979. But don't tell anyone - this is still regarded by some in the franchise as being classified information (FYEO) so don't expect to see van der Zyl get any kind of public acknowledgment or official recognition anytime soon... Bo Heamyan, UK Movies.

Taryn Simon talking about her latest project.
The heart of the project rests in an effort to look off-center- to look into the background of the background. Both Nikki and the real James Bond inhabit this space. Artsy Eitorial, New York

Other visual sectors of [Taryn Simon's] exhibition include photographs of Bond women as they appear now (effectively destroying mythologies surrounding the 'timeless' beauty and sex appeal of the codified 'Bond girl'). There is also a film about the uncredited voice artist Nikki van der Zyl (who dubbed most of the Bond girls throughout the years and was, and continues to be, denied recognition due to the producers' efforts to maintain the total 'Bond girl' image) M Daily (The Medium Group)

I would like to offer my praise to Nikki van der Zyl for her fantastic work on the early films. Really difficult to imagine all those early Bond girls are the same person. Its a real talent and it is perhaps sad that such people are overlooked in the film industry and by the public at large when you could easily argue that they are due as much credit as the actual actor. ....... Was watching the clip of Jill Masterson last night in GF. Fantastic work by Nikki I must say, she really ups the sexiness. JBFan626 MI6

Nikki, 77, was praised by former 007 Sir Roger as 'a master in the field', not least because she had dubbed Ursula Andress in Dr No and transformed Shirley Eaton's cockney tones in Goldfinger. Richard Kay, Daily Mail

While the rest of you are pursuing the latest pop star or reality idiocy, you have NO IDEA what makes a movie performance great. Monica (Nikki) Van der Zyl is one of the reasons why a dialog/voice makes a movie great.
rockmail (IMDb)

Hear, hear! Only today did I find out about Jill Masterson's wonderful voice... Great work mrs van der Zyl! mario-466-203672 (Nov 2012 IMDb)

With all the dubbing in this film (You Only Live Twice), it seems an appropriate time to praise the contributions of Nikki Van der Zyl, who provided uncredited voice-over work for an impressive ten 007 films. Nikki Van der Zyl dubbed an array of Bond Girls from Ursula Andress to Jane Seymour. Quite a résumé. I’ve never seen a photograph of this actress, but I love her voice ...
mario-466-203672 (Dominick Cappello

Very much aware of Nikki Van Der Zyl's work and contributions to the Bond films and many other films she worked on.... Fan of her work myself! Have made a list of people that I'm currently contacting for our two bond events Goldfinger day in September and the Big James Bond day in November. Van Der Zyl is very much on this list as her work is quiet superb and adds so much to the films!
Many of our guests on these events are not just actors but directors, stuntmen, camera men, editors and those involved with the music plus designers. All those important people you may not see ... but really are the makers of the series.
Thomas Bowington (organizer London Film Memorabilia Convention) email to George Rooker, March 2012

I have always acknowledged Nikki's contribution to the film industry, and wish her continued success ...
Roger Moore on his Official Site, September 2013

'What can you say about the re-voicing of certain actors on the Bond films?'
Without doubt the re-voicing was carried out to a very high standard, and film-goers are amazed when the truth is explained to them.
Norman Wanstall interviewed by Paul Rowlands

[Ursula] Andress' performance is even more impressive when you consider that she is essentially a puppet; her voice was dubbed over by Nikki van der Zyl, which I only knew by reading - a true testament to the talents of Andress, Zyl, and to the sound crew for lining everything up so well.
chadlikesmovies

It was without any doubt Nikki van der Zyl who not only re-voiced Ursula's vocal performance but also her singing voice.
Peter Hunt speaking to Graham Rye, editor & publisher of the 007 Magazine

Nikki did a very good job.
Ursula Andress, quoted in the James Bond Archives, published by Taschen in 2013

And by the way be careful giving credit to Nikki Van Der Zyl. She's persona non grata in the Bond world these days and for some reason the powers that be want her erased from history.
You Tube

Anyhow, let's talk about Nikki...I didn't realize until recently that she dubbed ALL of those Bond girls: Honey, Sylvia, Jill, Domino, Kissy, Solitaire, and many more. There are memorable characteristics of the early films: John Barry music cues, Ted Moore's cinematography, Peter Hunts editing, the travelogue feel, and then the subtle details like the leather panelled office doors, little touches like that that feel so familiar. Nikki's voice was one of those little familiar touches; one of those wonderful unique pieces of the early Bond films .......
Sir Roger Moore a well loved national treasure writes a foreword to a seemingly innocuous book which he then, without explanation, pulls at the last minute. I think thats a story worthy of discussion but when I raise it I am just met with people wanting to hush it all away or outright hostility as evidenced here.
TheWizardOfIce MI6

Poor Nikki... Seems like the whole world of Bond was turned against her after she contributed so much.
DarioOnatopp MI6

Who knows, maybe a film about Ms Van Der Zyl and EON will be made in the future.
WillyGalore MI6

I'm with you. Nikki van der Zyl deserves a lot of respect for her work on the Bond films. I'll certainly be buying her book ....... It was hardly Nikki van der Zyl's fault that certain people's voices were deemed by Eon to be not up to standard for a Bond movie. Also, why should she not receive credit for her work.
PeterGreenhill MI6

Did none of these women do the interview circuit back in the day? It seems a number of modern Bond gals could do with being dubbed, but of course interviews would let the cat out of the bag. Back in the 60s, it seemed just about everyone was dubbed! The most amazing was Sean Connery, dubbed for the first two films because his real voice was more John Laurie in real life, eventually in GF, after elocution lessons, they let him go with his real voice.
Napoleon Plural

Ursula Andress stole hearts as Honey Ryder, emerging from the sea in her white bikini in Dr No, but looking great was the limit of her contribution. Her Swiss accent was so strong that every line she delivers had to be dubbed by German actress Nikki van der Zyl.
Yorkshire Evening Post, October 2012

Saltzman and Broccoli offered Andress the role without ever meeting her. That a Swiss woman with the name "Ursula" might speak with an accent obviously never occurred to them, which is why they paid German [born] voice actress Nikki Van der Zyl to rerecord her dialogue... in an accent. Nikki is the voice over artist who infamously dubbed female dialogue in Bond films up to and including Moonraker. This sleight of hand is standard in Hollywood and frankly, Nikki deserves congratulations rather than scorn, not only for securing ongoing employment, but for giving pathos to dialogue like, "Have you ever see a mongoose dance?"
Alpha nerd - Fabio Daddo

An uncredited performer working behind the screen, Van der Zyl was the most constant voice within the filmic Bond universe and its most prolific agent of substitution.
Daniel Baumann's essay, 2013

Lulu's Glaswegian accent [in The Cherry Picker] proved too strong for Southern audiences, whereupon her dialogue was considered "not sexy enough", resulting in her being dubbed using Nikki van der Zyl, who also performed the same service for several Bond girls.
Iver Film Services

Sometimes actors are hired to dub actors who speak the same language but delivered their lines with a foreign accent or poor diction.
Dubbing (filmmaking), Wikipedia

Nikki deserves acknowledgement for her voiceovers from the early years.
Kerim MI6

This is news to me! You would never think all those women (most prominently the Connery era) were voiced over by a singular female. This is absolutely contemptible, I agree gentlemen. This woman is supremely talented for giving each Bond girl their own possessive voice, and has nothing to show for it. It would be different if she was after the money, but all she wants is some recognition for her career of meaty Bond work. EON should be disgraced to let such a thing happen.
0BradyM0Bondfanatic70BradyM0Bondfanatic7 MI6

She deserves to be part of the 50th celebrations as she played a large part in its history.
myworldisenough MI6

My position is that Nikki contributed to EONs success by allowing them to get away with hiring cheap unknowns rather than actresses who could actually speak English so is worthy of recognition. The dubbing and revoicing in the early Bond films is particularly impressive and it seems a shame that some people appear to want to airbrush Nikki and the sound editors who worked with her out of history. It may be an unglamourous part of filmmaking but without it GF would have been an absolute farce and we probably wouldn't have made it to 50 years.
TheWizardOfIce MI6

Well Eunice Grayson doesn't have such a nice, sophisticated voice compared to van der Zyl's more soothing tones. For that matter, neither does Ursula Andress, who has a more scratchy, hoarse sounding voice. Honey wouldn't have sounded quite the same saying the immortal lines "what are you doing here, looking for shells?" if she had used Ursula's voice.
WC CommanderBond.net MI6

I have tried to find out the answer as to why so many were dubbed, obviously thinking in reference to the English speaking actors. On the Criterion edition of the GF Laserdisc (the commentary that was eventually banned) Peter Hunt speaks quite a bit about dubbing and I think he supervised a lot of the process. On the subject of re voicing in general Hunt says it becomes 'an irritant' [for the audience] if you have an actor and you can't quite understand them. My GUESS therefore is anything that the film makers thought the audience would not understand was dubbed. Perhaps this may have been just one scene and not the whole actors performance(?). Hunt also says the producers gave a lot of time to post production sound and understood the importance of a good soundtrack.
sthgilyadgnivileht CommanderBond.net MI6

I suppose that given the limited experience of some actresses, they may not have been up to the task of doing their own ADR.
Peckinpah1976 CommanderBond.net MI6

Revoicing somebody is very tedious, hard work. It's not easy, and you've got to be extremely patient and careful about how you get it. [Nikki] used to work very hard at it and we would redo things and work very, very hard.
Pete Hunt quoted in James Bond Archives, published by Taschen in 2013

Dubbing artistes rarely, if ever, get their due. They are the faceless, nameless, uncredited specialists who give voice to stunning divas who look luminescent on-screen but either cannot speak the language or have weak diction and modulation.
Film is an audio-visual medium and acting requires emoting not only through facial and physical expression, but also with a nuanced and varied performance through the voice. The timbre, tone and tremor are more vital to an actor's performance than mere costumes, make-up and histrionics.
The value of the dubbing artiste's contribution towards creating a star's persona can never be overstated. But Bollywood, like its western counterpart, seems to have little regard for their worth. They are neither credited nor compensated even a fraction of the obscene sums paid to the stars they give voice to.
The Indian Express - Journalism of Courage.

NOBODY DUBS IT BETTER I think that when most people think of "dubbing" or "looping", the most common images of are giant monsters movies and kung fu flicks. While neither is an inappropriate thought response, dubbing used to be a whole lot more common than many might realize. FACT: While the James Bond franchise as we know burst onto the silver screen in 1962, the first film in the series to not feature any major dubbing (at least to my knowledge) was 1974's The Man With The Golden Gun. That’s the NINTH film in the franchise. In fact, out of the 15 films released in the series from 1962-1987, only two didn’t feature any dubbing of lead or supporting actors.
Do you recognize the woman up on the right? Of course you don't. You would, however, recognize her voice. That is Nikki Van der Zyl and her voice is heard in at least five Bond films; probably more. Hers is the voice that came out of Honey Ryder's (Ursula Andress) mouth after she arose from the sea in Dr.No. In addition to various background voices, Nikki also lent her vocal talents in replacing the lines of Eunice Gayson (Dr.No & From Russia With Love), Shirley Eaton (Goldfinger), Claudine Auger (Thunderball), Mie Hama (You Only Live Twice), and a great deal of Jane Seymour’s work in Live And Let Die! While those beautiful women provided the sexy Bond Girl look, Nikki Van der Ziyl brought the voice to back it up.
Daniel W. Baldwin.

Actors, generally, do not like voice recording sessions, which is known under various names as 'looping', 'post-synch' and 'ADR' (automated dialogue replacement). When an actor or actress is on a set they are reacting to the other actor and their dialogue is recorded. This is known as 'production sound'. Normally much of this recorded sound is salvaged and used for the final soundtrack. There are several exceptions, extraneous noises on location, or unwanted overlapping dialogue (which is usually caught by the 'production mixer' and is recorded at the end of the scene and is known as a 'wild track'). There are other reasons, which are a little more major, such as a poor performance and even more extreme where they have to replace the actor's voice altogether (known as re-voicing). The most well-known person in this area is probably Robert Rietty. Robert was the supervisor of the extensive recording of voices on "Waterloo". By then he had become well known as a voice-only artiste despite the fact he has been seen frequently in small parts in films and tv shows since the 1950's. He was very nice person to know and very easy to work with. We used him many times during the time that I worked there. I would say his female equivalent would be Nikki Van Der Zyl.
Pinewood, Stephen Pickard.


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