Known only as Cigar Girl, she’s an undercover terrorist working for Renard. She features early in the James Bond movie The World Is Not Enough (1999), and is given a name, Giulietta da Vinci in the Raymond Benson novel of the same name.
Portrayed by Italian actress Maria Grazia Cucinotta and stuntwoman Sarah Donohue, is a brief yet explosive part in the film. In the novel, she is also recognized as one of Renard’s lovers, although this aspect is not depicted in the movie.
Posing as Swiss banker Mr. Lachaise’s secretary, Cigar Girl is present during a meeting with British agent James Bond at the Bilbao branch of La Banque Suisse de L’Industrie. Serving cigars to both 007 and her employer, she enters the scene.
Bond, on an assignment to retrieve money for British oil magnate Sir Robert King, a friend of M and the father of Elektra King, receives a receipt from Giulietta, who jokes about Bond examining her figures. As Bond ponders the innuendo, he comments appreciatively on her “perfectly rounded” figures.
A confrontation ensues where Bond subdues Lachaise’s bodyguards, but before Bond can extract vital information from Lachaise, a knife, thrown by a fleeing Cigar Girl, kills him. Both Bond and the Cigar Girl make their separate exits from the building.
Tasked with killing Bond, Renard places his trust in Cigar Girl, instructing her to allow Bond to escape an initial assault in Spain. This manoeuvre aims to ensure a bomb is delivered to the MI6 headquarters.
Bond, unsuspecting, returns the money to Sir Robert King at the MI6 headquarters in London, triggering a deadly explosion from the concealed fertilizer bomb. Through the resulting gap in the building, Bond catches sight of Cigar Girl on the River Thames, clad in a striking red leather suit and armed with a machine gun.
An intense chase unfolds along the Thames, culminating at the Millennium Dome. Cigar Girl, wielding a grenade launcher, beaches her boat near the Dome, and makes a daring leap onto a hot air balloon.
Hot on her trail, 007 manages to grasp the balloon’s mooring ropes. Despite his offer of protection from her true employer, Cigar Girl chooses to end her own life by igniting the balloon’s gas tank, resulting in a massive fireball.
Bond’s fall onto the Dome’s roof results in a shoulder injury that troubles him throughout the rest of the mission. Later in the narrative, it is revealed that Giulietta was employed by Renard, also known as Victor Zokas, and was tasked to monitor Mr. Lachaise.
Maria Grazia Cucinotta
Born on July 27, 1968, in Sicily, Maria Grazia Cucinotta is a celebrated Italian actress and model who rose to fame in Italy’s fashion industry at 16 and furthered her career by participating in the Miss Italia competition in 1987, where she claimed the title of Miss Cinema Sicily.
Her acting career was a series of small roles and appearances until her breakthrough in 1994, when she starred in The Postman, an award-winning film that solidified her reputation in both Italian and international cinema.
Her work pace intensified from 1995 to 1997, with notable performances in both Italian and foreign films and TV series, including The Fourth King and The Sopranos.
She continued to work with notable artists and starred in Bond 19, The World Is Not Enough, as a charismatic Cigar Girl who challenges James Bond. Cucinotta has remained active in the Italian film industry, both in acting and producing roles, with notable performances in Io non ci casco, Purple Sea, and The Museum of Wonders, among others.
In addition to her live-action roles, she provided the Italian voice-over for Queen Tara in the 2013 animated film Epic. Her most recent roles as of 2021 include Donna Maria in American Night and a part in Gli anni belli.