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When fans of Aston Martin cars consider the marque’s contributions to Hollywood, it’s typically associated with one fictitious celebrity’s name. That’s right; everyone seems to picture a tuxedo-clad James Bond from the 007 franchise sliding into the cockpit of a British grand tourer. However, not every Aston in films is a James Bond car. Instead, fans of Johnny English and other unexpected films can enjoy stunning rides like the Aston Martin DB7 Vantage. 

Believe it or not, Aston Martin and its cars feature in movies sans James Bond

Rowan Atkinson with his wife Sunetra stand next to an Aston Martin DB7 Vantage GT car to promote Johnny English, a James Bond 007 parody.
Rowan Atkinson and his wife Sunetra stand next to an Aston Martin DB7 Vantage for ‘Johnny English’ | Ian West, PA Images via Getty Images

If there’s an automotive equivalent of typecasting in the annals of Hollywood, Aston Martin and its cars fit the bill. Since 1964, fans of the 007 franchise have expected to see Mr. Bond paired with an Aston Martin as his gadget-laden car of choice. However, in these movies, James Bond is nowhere near the marque’s cars. 

MovieMake and model
Johnny English (2003)DB7 Vantage
The Birds (1963)DB2/4 Drophead Coupe
Johnny English Strikes Again (2018)V8 Vantage
Fast & Furious 6 (2013)DB9
Tomb Raider (2001)V12 Vanquish

What Aston Martin is in ‘Johnny English?’

The “Johnny English” franchise, a famed superspy parody series, pits Rowan Atkinson and his namesake character against the forces of evil. What’s more, in a James Bond-adjacent car casting, English drives a dark blue Aston Martin DB7 Vantage. 

In standard form, the Aston Martin DB7 Vantage is a serious GT car. Its 420-horsepower 6.0L naturally aspirated V12 is as orchestral as it is potent, maybe more so. Of course, the bumbling spy’s car packed an assortment of gadgets, from a tailpipe rocket launcher to an ejector seat. Predictably, the DB7’s ejector seat function returns to bite English in the rear. 

Which Aston Martin car was used in ‘The Birds?’

An Aston Martin DB2-4 shows off its classic car looks beside a large home.
A classic Aston Martin DB2-4 hardtop | National Motor Museum, Heritage Images, Getty Images

Tippi Hedren, the actor who brought Melanie Daniels to life in the Alfred Hitchcock film, “The Birds,” drove an Aston Martin. The striking DB2/4 Drophead Coupe certainly wasn’t the star of the film, but any car enthusiast working through the Master of Suspense’s 1963 thriller.

It’s a fitting automotive casting, too. Daniels is a well-to-do socialite; a DB car would be right up her alley.    

An Aston Martin car is in ‘Johnny English Strikes Again’ too

Yet another example of Johnny English choosing a 007-style car, English drives a classic 1978 Aston Martin V8 Vantage in “Johnny English Strikes Again” (2018). However, unlike the V8 Aston in the James Bond film “The Living Daylights” (1987), English drives a bright-red example. Subtle. 

Who drove the Aston Martin in ‘Fast 6?’

A DB9 shows off its aesthetic by looking like a James Bond 007 car or Johnny English GT on a grassy field.
Aston Martin DB9 | National Motor Museum, Heritage Images, Getty Images

Owen Shaw, brought to life by Luke Evans, drives the almost sinister 2004 Aston Martin DB9 in “Fast 6” (2013). It’s apropos, too; Shaw is supposed to be the calculated, jet-setting leader of a team of thieves. 

Still, we could argue that the V12-powered Aston Martin GT car could have yielded the role to a rakish Jaguar XK or similar. After all, Jaguar has a history of outfitting baddies with a similarly sinister ride, from the infamous Kray twins to Dave Bautista’s silent assassin in “Spectre.”

The Aston Martin Vanquish made an appearance in “Tomb Raider”

A silver Aston Martin V12 Vanquish shows off its lines, which are chunkier than the Vantage, as it sits by a manor.
Aston Martin V12 Vanquish | Aston Martin

While most fans will place the Aston Martin V12 Vanquish in the vehicular warfare scene in “Die Another Day” (2002), the eye-popping GT car made an earlier appearance in “Tomb Raider” (2001). However, instead of enjoying a significant role like in the 007 movie, the Vanquish is just a passing set piece. Still, its muscular lines are a welcome addition to the courtyard at Croft Manor. 

Of course, these Aston Martin movie cars aren’t the only examples. For instance, Matt Damon, portraying beloved car builder and visionary Carroll Shelby, piloted an Aston Martin in the opening scenes. Still, that was an immolating race car in the 1959 24 Hours of Le Mans, not a road-legal bit of on-screen eye candy. Aston Martin simply can’t escape the silver screen.

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