An AK-47 assault rifle.

A Kalashnikov rifle is any one of a series of automatic rifles based on the original design of Mikhail Kalashnikov in the latter half of the 1940s. They are officially known in Russian as "Avtomat Kalashnikova" ("Kalashnikov's Automatic Gun"; Russian: Автома́т Кала́шникова), but are widely known as Kalashnikovs, AKs, or in Russian slang, as a "Kalash". They were originally manufactured in the Soviet Union, primarily by Izhmash, but these rifles and their variants are now manufactured in many other countries.[1] The AK-47, 74 and their variants remain the most popular and widely used assault rifles in the world because of their substantial reliability under harsh conditions, low production costs compared to contemporary Western weapons, availability in virtually every geographic region and ease of use.

Introduced into the James Bond film series with the 1983 film Octopussy, various Kalashnikov-style rifles have subsequently appeared in The Living Daylights (1987), GoldenEye (1995), and Die Another Day (2002). Often renamed for copyright reasons, the Kalashnikov series of rifles has been represented in the majority of James Bond video games, including GoldenEye 007 (1997), Tomorrow Never Dies (1999), The World Is Not Enough (2000), Everything or Nothing (2004), GoldenEye 007 (2010), and 007 Legends (2012).

Film appearances


Orlov flanked by men with AK-style assault rifles, as seen in Octopussy (1983).

In the 1983 film Octopussy, weapons presumably intended to represent generic Soviet Kalashnikov assault rifles of the AK-47 variety are seen in use by rogue General Orlov's Soviet forces and East German border guards. Among the armament depicted as standard Soviet (Warsaw Pact) weaponry in this classic Cold War adventure is the accurately-depicted AKM assault rifle. Hastily seen carried by one soldier just as General Gogol discovers the stolen Soviet treasuries in the salvaged Mercedes-Benz's boot. There's also a scene shown earlier featuring one soldier firing his Kalashnikov modernized assault rifle at 007 in an effort to prevent him from escaping with General Orlov's luxury car (containing the invaluable jewels in the trunk).

Throughout the film, Orlov's men and some border guards use Type 56 rifles, the Chinese-issue AK-47 assault rifle. Besides the obvious "Russians using Chinese weapons" issue this is an anachronism since the milled receiver AK-47 was well obsolete by this time for the USSR front-line troops. Orlov's forces are also seen with Adler-Jäger AP-80 carbines, blank firers patterned after the AK-47, while patrolling platforms and railway tunnels near the border. Some border guards also carry these while they're seen investigating the crashed Mercedes' that is being brought up from the river. Czechoslovakian assault rifle designed in the 1950's. Although externally somewha

The Living Daylights

Many of the Soviet and Czech soldiers, as well as the Mujahideen use milled-receiver AK-47 assault rifles, most likely Chinese Poly Tech Legend copies. Kamran Shah, James Bond and Kara Milovy's Mujahideen ally, wields an AK-47 during the battle with the Soviets. Kara grabs Kamran's AK-47 to go off and help Bond. It is worth noting that the use of AK-derivative by Czechoslovak forces is a mistake as Czechoslovakia was the only Warsaw Pact member that used a standard assault rifle of its own design (Samopal vz. 58). Many of the Bratislava Soviets carry AKMS derivatives. Soviets, Czechs, and Mujahideen also carry AKMS rifles, one of which Bond is able to grab from one of Koskov's Czech soldier on the plane.

GoldenEye - Die Another Day

Bond using the AKS-74U assault rifles, as seen in GoldenEye (1995).

The AK-74 and its variants are frequently seen in the Brosnan era of James Bond film franchise (often in the hands of Soviet or North Korean soldiers), most notably in GoldenEye (1995), The World Is Not Enough (1999) and Die Another Day (2002). Bond very frequently uses the AKS-74U, the compact version of the AK-74, by taking them from slain or incapacitated Russian soldiers. He first acquires this weapon during the opening scene at the chemical weapons factory, and then again during the escape from the Soviet archives (he takes this AKS-74U in the T-55 tank with him, and then uses it again when he confronts Trevelyan on his train). Xenia Onatopp also uses an AKS-74U (with two magazines "jungle-taped" together). She first uses this weapon to kill all of the technicians at the Severnaya Goldeneye control center, and then is seen carrying it again on Trevelyan's missile train (however, she drops it when the train crashes, and when Trevelyan tries to grab it, he is stopped by Bond, who points his own AKS-74U at him).

Other appearances include The World Is Not Enough, where the Russian military personnel at the Kazakhstan ICBM base are frequently seen using AKS-74Us and in the pre-title sequence of Die Another Day, where the carbine can be seen being carried by Bond and his teammates as they infiltrate North Korea, as well as by some of Col. Moon's men.

The weapons used by the Russian soldiers throughout the movie (and by Bond and Trevelyan during the shootout on the satellite dish) are often referred to as AK-74 or AKS-74 rifles. This is correct in some instances, but wrong in most cases. The vast majority of the so-called "AK-74s" used by Russian soldiers in this movie are actually Norinco Type 56 and Type 56-1 rifles, Chinese copies of the AKM and AKMS. The prop weapons used in the movie have been fitted with AK-74-style muzzle brakes and plastic magazines to make them resemble AKS-74s, but the giveaway is the fact that the weapons clearly have under-folding stocks (on the AKS-74, the stock folds to the side), and more curved magazines for 7.62x39mm ammo (the AK-74 magazines are less curved). The weapons are clearly identifiable as Norinco Type 56 and Type 56-1s because they have the distinctive hooded front sights which characterize only Chinese-made Kalashnikov variants.

On a few occasions in the movie, it is possible to spot genuine AK-74 and AKS-74 rifles in the hands of some of the Russian soldiers (see below), usually in non-firing scenes. These are not nearly as common, however, as the mocked-up Chinese Type 56s which are intended to pass for AK-74s.

Likewise, in the opening shootout at the arms bazaar in Tomorrow Never Dies, some of the terrorists are seen shooting at Bond with Norinco Type 56-1 assault rifles with AK-74-style muzzle brakes installed, probably the exact same guns that were used previously in GoldenEye (which had the same armorers as this movie). Several can be seen in Wai Lin's safehouse as well. North Korean soldiers in Die Another Day can be frequently seen using Norinco Type 56-1 rifles at the beginning of the film, likely standing in for AKMS rifles. Some are fitted with AK-74-style muzzle brakes and side-folding stocks, intended to pass for the AKS-74 (similar to GoldenEye).

Video-game appearances

GoldenEye 007

The "KF7 soviet" assault rifle, as seen in GoldenEye 007 (1997).

The AKS-74 first appears in the popular Nintendo 64 GoldenEye game as the "KF7 soviet" and is described as the standard issue rifle to Soviet troops; tough and reliable with a long range.[2] The KF7 has a 30-round magazine with a maximum of 400 rounds carriable. One of the first weapons found in the game, ammunition for the weapon is relatively plentiful. As with other weapons in the game with folding stocks, the stock is not present in the game. Like the "AR33" rifle, it is capable of firing fullauto by holding the trigger, three-round bursts by tapping it, or single shots by tapping while using the zoom mode. In the beta version of the game, it was called the Kalashnikov AK47 despite being based on the AKS-74 as seen in GoldenEye. The model of the weapon was also changed.

Tomorrow Never Dies (video game)

Appears simply as "Assault Rifle" and carries 30 rounds in a magazine. It is sometimes powerful and sometimes weak, differing in every level.

The World Is Not Enough

A variant of the AK-47, the AKS-47, appears in the game The World Is Not Enough, with the folding stock removed. Renamed the "Soviet KA-57", it shares ammo with all other 7.62mm rifles.

Agent Under Fire

The Kazakovich KA-57 assault rifle, as seen in Agent Under Fire (2001).

Called the "Kazakovich KA-57" for copyright reasons, the Russian assault rifle is used in two levels of the 2001 game Agent Under Fire: "Cold Reception" and "Night of the Jackal". A scoped version called the "KA-57S" is used in the Rail Shooting Levels. The instruction manual notes that the KA-57 was developed for the Soviet infantry during the Cold War. It's a sturdy rifle with low stopping power and a slow rate of fire-more accurate than a submachine gun, but lacking in punch of other assault rifles.[3]

Everything or Nothing

A variant of the AK-47, the AKM (M for "modernized" or "upgraded"; in Russian: Автомат Калашникова Модернизированный), appears in 2004's Everything or Nothing. Called the "AK-74", the AKM is (muzzle brake removed) is the second most powerful rifle in the game. It has a faster rate of fire and can bring down enemies with one shot (depending one where you hit), but has a smaller magazine than the SIG SG 552.

Quantum of Solace (video game)

An AKS-74U makes an appearance in this game during the Madagascar and Barge stages. Called the FRWL in the game after the film From Russia With Love.

GoldenEye 007 (2010 game)

The AKM assault rifle, as seen in GoldenEye 007 (2010).

The AKM variant would later reappear in the 2010 video game remake of the original GoldenEye. Russian infantry in many levels carry AKMs, incorrectly labelled as "AK-47s," sometimes with a Trijicon RX01 reflex sight attached. In the Wii version, this scope is incorrectly shown attached directly to the top of the receiver cover instead of mounted via the bracket on the side of the receiver. In Reloaded it is still mounted incorrectly, since it is shown attached with an MP5-style scope mount attached to a random part of the receiver. The AKM is fitted with a smooth AK-47 type handguard rather than the "palm swell" AKM handguard.

The "AK-47" has a 30-round magazine with a maximum of 240 rounds carriable. In the Wii version it has semi and fully automatic fire modes, while it is auto only in Reloaded. In both games, it is a weak assault rifle with poor range and accuracy. It appears in the single player levels frequently, sometimes bearing a reflex sight or a laser sight. It can be fitted with a reflex sight, a grenadier, a laser sight, or a thermal scope in the online mode. It is unlocked at rank 3 in the Wii version's online mode, while a player starts off with the AK in Reloaded's online play at rank 1. The AK is also seen in the hands of the hero, Ourumov, in the online game mode "Heroes". It is much more powerful in the hands of Ourumov, has infinite ammo, and is attached with a grenadier bearing two grenades.

007 Legends

The AKM assault rifle, as seen in 007 Legends (2012).

Developed by the same team behind 2010's GoldenEye remake, a revamped version of the AKM model from GoldenEye Reloaded appeared in the 2012 video game 007 Legends during its third level based on Licence to Kill, once again labelled an "AK-47". Instead of the incorrect MP5-style scope mount it has an AK-style bracket mounting a rail. As before, the AKM is fitted with a smooth AK-47 type hand-guard rather than the "palm swell" AKM hand-guard. As in GoldenEye, the "AK-47" has a 30-round magazine with a maximum of 240 rounds carriable.



Weapon photographs


  1. RIP Kalashnikov: 20 facts you may not have known about AK-47 and its creator. RT (December 23, 2013).
  2. (1997) GoldenEye 007: Instruction Booklet. Nintendo, p.16. 
  3. (2001) Agent Under Fire: Instruction Booklet. Electronic Arts, p.17. 
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