beauty icon, olga kurylenko

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Photo: Greg Williams / Art + Commerce/ Women Management Paris

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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Photo: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

How to fill the hole left by the love of Bond’s life? Give him a hard-hitting partner full of bloodlust. Enter Olga Kurylenko, whose vendetta in Quantum of Solace means her relationship with 007 is strictly a working one. Luckily for him, when you’re Bond, you’re always allowed to look.

Photo: Greg Williams / Art + Commerce / Women Management Paris

In the grand tradition of Bond girls past, Kurylenko got her start as a poseur. Here, she plays up the pout on the cover of this August’s Vogue Italia.

Photo: Getty Images

A Parisian implant since her modeling career took off, a fresh-faced Kurylenko works it on the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival in 2005.

Photo: Oleg Nikishin / Epsilon / Getty Images

Daniel Craig and Kurylenko make a handsome pair on the roof of the Ritz-Carlton in Moscow in October.

Photo: Dave M. Benett / Getty Images

A spy’s work is never done. Celebrating Quantum’s premiere in London this October, Kurylenko means business in a metallic, jewel-embellished off-duty look from Chanel Haute Couture.

Photo: François Durand / Getty Images

Kurylenko takes to the black carpet in Paris on October 30. Another premiere, another killer (Chanel) dress.

Photo: Franco S. Origlia /

A Ukrainian-born French-speaking actress playing a Bolivian should always wear Italian. Kurylenko looks far from being a fish out of water in Dolce & Gabbana’s aquatic-inspired gown on the red carpet in Rome earlier this month.

Photo: Greg Williams / Art + Commerce/ Women Management Paris

After her stint as Camille, Kurylenko may just have to get used to seeing her name in print. She tries it out in Greg Williams’ spread for Vogue Italia.