James Bond Changes His Drink of Choice

updated 09/19/2002 at 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/19/2002 01:00PM

Yes, James Bond prefers his martinis shaken, not stirred. He also prefers them made of vodka, rather than the classic gin.

But starting with his next movie adventure -- "Die Another Day," starring Pierce Brosnan and Halle Berry and opening Nov. 22 -- 007 will also be preferring them made of Finlandia vodka, not Smirnoff, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Bond, in the form of Sean Connery, began drinking his Smirnoff martinis in his first movie outing, 1962's "Dr. No." As the Journal notes, "Historians of the spirits consider that drink to be a flash point in America's transition to mixing martinis with vodka rather than gin."

And, in the 40-year history of 007 movies, that vodka has always been Smirnoff, in one of the best product-placements ever -- especially in the past three Bond movies, all starring Brosnan.

But that was then. Now, Smirnoff is no longer seeking the Bond audience, a spokeswoman for the distiller tells the paper. "We are really looking to attract customers that are more in the 21 to 29 age group," she states. "People in that age group socialize more."

The Bond audience, said the Smirnoff rep, is men 25 to 45, and simply not into socializing -- just into being cool.

Bond's studio, MGM, insists that the Bond target audience is men and women age 13 to 59, which means that those on the low end shouldn't be drinking anything at all.

Even so, the Finlandia people, whose typical customer is between the ages of 25 and 39, is over the moon about their high-profile new client. "This is an unbelievable coup for us," Scott Reid, a global marketing director for the label, tells the Journal.

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