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olga
kurylenko

The name's Kurylenko, Olga Kurylenko. OK, so her moniker doesn't have the same blunt ring as that of her on-screen partner, 007. But this raven-haired Ukrainian beauty—who stars as Camille opposite a perpetually snarling Daniel Craig in Quantum of Solace (speaking of impenetrable names)—has been getting plenty of advance buzz as the Bond girl du jour. Even Russian Communists (yes, there are still some) have taken note of Kurylenko's role, denouncing her as a traitor for conspiring with an anti-Soviet spy. Must be one convincing performance.

Kurylenko has all the credentials necessary to be a successful Bond girl: Namely, she's a former model. To be scrupulously fair to Bond flames past, that's a little reductive. Being a beauty queen never hurt, either: See From Russia With Love's Daniela Bianchi (Miss Rome), Tomorrow Never Dies' Michelle Yeoh (Miss Malaysia), and Die Another Day's Halle Berry (Miss Ohio). Which makes us wonder: Besides Berry, whither art thou, other Bondettes? Yes, Casino Royale's doomed Vesper, Eva Green, seems poised for stardom and Famke Janssen (Xenia Onatopp in GoldenEye) has the whole X-Men franchise thing in the bag. But besides Ursula Andress and her bikini/knife-belt getup, few other Bond babes come to mind without a little IMDB memory-jogging.

We can't say for certain whether Kurylenko will join the pantheon of actresses whose names inevitably precede the words "best known as the Bond girl in…" But judging by Quantum's plot, she just might usher in a new era of femmes fatales less interested in bedding Bond (flame-haired Gemma Arterton steps in gamely for that) than in wreaking some serious international havoc of their own. And if nothing else, she can probably rest assured that her name will live on in infamy with those surly Communists.

—Alison Baenen

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