Bond Girl: Paula Caplan

Paula Caplan was a fictional intelligence operative employed by the British Secret Service and based in the Bahamas. The character appeared in the 1965 James Bond film Thunderball and was played by British actress and model Martine Beswick.


When James Bond investigates Nassau, two stolen atomic bombs, he is partnered up with the local Bahamian British Secret Service assistant, the young and beautiful Paula Caplan. Together they first make contact with Domino Derval, the sister of murdered pilot Fran├žois, unaware of his recent death. After Bond makes contact with Domino while the two are swimming, Paula and Bond pretend that their motor has broken down. Paula offers to wait alone for the service boat while Bond gets a lift back to shore from Domino in her craft, as he allegedly has a crucial meeting to attend. Bond and Paula part ways while still undercover.

After several days working in the Secret Service’s Bahamian Station with Bond, Felix Leiter, and fellow contact Pinder, Paula plans to rendezvous at Bond’s hotel with developed pictures taken of Emilio Largo’s ship. Waiting for Bond with the photographs and seemingly dressed for a dinner date, Paula is lying on a couch while smoking a cigarette and reading a magazine. She is surprised when Fiona Volpe arrives instead, claiming to have a date that evening with Bond too. When a knock is heard in the connecting room, Paula goes to fix her hair and open the door, expecting Bond to be ambushed by Vargas and Janni, two henchmen working for Largo and Volpe. Paula is subsequently kidnapped and taken to Largo’s estate, Palmyra. After Bond breaks into Palmyra, he finds Paula dead. Rather than divulge information under torture, she committed suicide by cyanide capsule.

Behind the scenes

Martine Beswick also played the part of Zora in From Russia with Love which came out two years earlier.