Austin Powers (character)

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Austin Powers
Austin Powers series character
First appearanceAustin Powers: International Man of Mystery
Created byMike Myers
Portrayed byMike Myers
Aaron Himelstein (teenager)
Tom Cruise (in film-within-film)
OccupationSpy for the Ministry of Defence
FamilyNigel Powers (father)
Dr. Evil (brother)
Spouse(s)Vanessa Kensington (deceased)
Significant other(s)Felicity Shagwell
Foxxy Cleopatra
RelativesMini-Me (brother's clone)
Scott Evil (nephew)
Frau Farbissina (nephew's possible mother)

Sir Augustine Danger "Austin" Powers, KBE, is a fictional character from the Austin Powers series of films. The character was created by Mike Myers. Mike Myers was also the actor who played the character in the films. He is the main character of Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997), Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me (1999) and Austin Powers in Goldmember (2002).[1] He is a British spy. He likes to go to parties and he represents the hippie culture of the 1960s. This is because he and his opponent Dr. Evil, were frozen during an experiment, and they stayed frozen for many years. The series' humor follows his attempts to adjust to the modern world as he continues to try to save it from terrorism.

Personality[change | change source]

Powers's "Shaguar"

Austin Powers was a character seen as a parody of James Bond. The character was also influenced by Harry Palmer and characters played by Peter Sellers.[2][3]

Development[change | change source]

The band Ming Tea was formed by Myers, Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs during the 1990s. The band acted like a British band of the 1960s.[4][5] The band members all performed under pseudonyms (fake names) with 1960s personas. Myers adopted the pseudonym and character of Austin Powers. This group made a number of live club and television performances in character. Myers' wife at the time, Robin Ruzan, encouraged him to write a film based on Austin Powers.[5][6]

Obituaries of Simon Dee (1935–2009), the radio and television presenter, claimed that the character of Austin Powers was inspired by Dee's "Sixties grooviness".[7][8][9] Mike Myers has stated that the "Austin Powers" character was based on his own father.[10]

Other media[change | change source]

Video Games: Austin Powers, Austin Powers Pinball, Austin Powers: Welcome to my Underground Lair, Austin Powers: Oh Behave!, and Austin Powers: Operation Trivia.

  • HBO purchased the rights to make a cartoon series based on the Austin Powers films in 1999. Despite announcing plans for a thirteen episode season, HBO never made the shows.[11][12][13]
  • Austin Powers has been used for advertising several products, such as Pepsi Cola.[14]

In popular culture[change | change source]

In 2010, Austin Powers was voted #23 in Entertainment Weekly's list "The 100 greatest characters of the last 20 years."[15]

References[change | change source]

  1. "THE MEDIA BUSINESS: ADVERTISING; Big marketers are betting on 'Austin Powers' to endear them to young people". The New York Times. 1999-06-14. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
  2. Montalbano, Dave (December 2010). The Adventures of Cinema Dave in the Florida Motion Picture World. Xlibris Corporation. p. 185. ISBN 978-1-4500-2396-2. Retrieved 5 August 2012.
  3. "Myers is funny, but he's no Peter Sellers". Deseret News. Salt Lake City. 28 November 2003. Archived from the original on 10 June 2014. Retrieved 5 August 2012 – via HighBeam Research (subscription required).
  4. Digital Hit (1997–2012). "Mike Myers". Digital Hit. Digital Hit Entertainment/ Multiplex Theatre Properties Inc. Retrieved 29 July 2012.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Cherie D. Abbey, Omnigraphics, Kevin Hillstrom (2004). Biography Today Performing Artists. Omnigraphics. p. 101. ISBN 078080709X.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  6. "This Sort Of Thing Is His Bag, Baby". Newsweek. May 18, 1997.
  7. Evans, Peter (2009-08-31). "The groovy rise and sad fall of Simon Dee, the real Austin Powers". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
  8. "TV chat show star Simon Dee dies". BBC. 2009-08-30. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
  9. "Dee day for the real Austin Powers". The Age. Melbourne. 2009-08-31. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
  10. "Austin Powers has The Force". BBC. 1999-06-14. Retrieved 2010-11-06.
  11. Kaplan, Don (1999-05-04). "YEAH, BABY! HBO SINKS TEETH INTO 'AUSTIN POWERS' CARTOON". The New York Post. Retrieved 2010-11-05.[permanent dead link]
  12. Seiler, Andy (1999-06-21). "The spy who won't go away HBO will animate 'Austin Powers,' and a third movie is expected". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-11-05.[permanent dead link]
  13. Ressner, Jeffrey (1999-06-21). "Cinema: Austin's Power". Time. Archived from the original on 2012-11-06. Retrieved 2010-12-04.
  14. "Freebies Power Austin's Promotional Mojo". Orlando Sentinel. Archived from the original on 2012-07-10. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
  15. "The 100 Greatest Characters of the Last 20 Years". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved 2010-11-05.