James Bond scriptwriter dies aged 68

Tom Mankiewicz worked on several Bond films

Tom Mankiewicz worked on several Bond films

The Jewish screenwriter who brought to life James Bond and Superman has died at the age of 68.

Hollywood veteran Tom Mankiewicz died at his Los Angeles home following surgery for pancreatic cancer.

The son of the Oscar-winning director of All About Eve, Joseph L Mankiewicz, Mr Mankiewicz followed in his father’s footsteps and directed the television series Hart to Hart and the Tom Hanks film Dragnet.

But he was perhaps best known for writing or contributing to the scripts for several Bond films, including Diamonds are Forever and The Spy Who Loved Me.

Mr Mankiewicz, who grew up in New York and studied at Yale, also contributed to the script for the first films in the Superman franchise.

He started his career as assistant director on the set of a John Wayne film.

Director Richard Donner said: "Making Superman was only possible because when Tom came in, he brought his sense of humour and brought those characters to life.”

Last updated: 2:59pm, January 28 2011