Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

The Ministry Of Ungentlemanly Warfare Assistant Is More Important Than You Think

There are plenty of stars sneaking around Guy Ritchie's top-secret do-or-die mission that "The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare" is embarking on, so you'd be forgiven for missing one particular character that is hanging in the background while all eyes are on the covert goings-on being mapped out by M (Cary Elwes) and his fearless hero, Gus March-Phillipps (Henry Cavill). While there are plenty of key pieces in play for Operation Postmaster (the codename for the mission intended to hit the Nazi regime hard), there's a young liaison officer played by Freddie Fox, who is not only taking notes but would go on to become one of the most influential authors in history — James Bond creator Ian Fleming.

It's a very understated inclusion of such a pivotal real-life character. Throughout the film, Fox's author-to-be often hangs on the sidelines, handing notes to M while the mission is underway. It's also one of many the Ministry embarked on that would work as a blueprint for Fleming's entire James Bond timeline and the big-screen franchise bred from it that became a staple of cinema. 

From the gadgets to the Bond girls to some of James Bond's best post-kill one-liners, Fleming's involvement with the Ministry, in turn, gave us many stories, including "Casino Royale," which became one of the best action movies ever made. Coincidentally, for Fox, there was another spy book series he helped bring to life by way of an incredibly annoying character.

Freddie Fox was among Slow Horses before he joined the Ministry

He might appear as the key employee in "The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare," only speaking when spoken to during these covert discussions, but it's quite the contrast to Freddie Fox's other appearance in the spy business on Apple TV+'s "Slow Horses." For three seasons, Fox played slimy desk weasel James "Spider" Webb in the gripping adaptation of the Mike Herron book series. Constantly getting up the backs of our heroes and causing trouble whenever he could, Fox mastered the art of bringing an annoying character to life, one that fans would want to punch square in the face after climbing through the screen.

Thankfully, those kinds of characteristics are absent in Guy Ritchie's latest film. Instead, Fox's take on Fleming is a far more reserved performance. He hangs in the background and reports to M, who would go on to become the inspiration for Bond's equally iconic boss. You can see how he and the rest of the Ministry handle their own top-secret missions when "The Ministry of Ungentlemanly Warfare" arrives in theatres on April 19.