The first problem Furie, Caine and producer Harry Saltzman had when filming Len Deighton's novel was that the spy in it didn't have a name. They wanted a really boring name and Caine finally said Harry was the most boring name he could think of. There was a stunned silence while Saltzman's acolytes waited to see if the boss would take umbrage. But he laughed and just said: "Harry it is. My real name's Herschel." Saltzman said the most boring man he'd ever met was called Palmer and so Harry Palmer was born. Saltzman also suggested Caine wear glasses, which he did in real life, because the producer was sick of seeing actors who didn't wear glasses in real life mishandle them in movies. They did have one difference of opinion: Saltzman was worried a scene where Palmer pushed his own supermarket trolley would be taken to mean the spy was gay. (They solved this by making him use the trolley as a weapon.) It's a toss up between this and The Spy Who Came In From The Cold for the best spy movie of the 1960s.
Director: Sidney J Furie Cast: Michael Caine, Nigel Green


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