This is the theme tune to the 12th James Bond movie, For Your Eyes Only
. Bill Conti, who was also responsible for the film's score, wrote the song with Mick Leeson. Leeson also co-penned Easton's 1980 UK single "One Man Woman" as well as Charles & Eddie's hit "Would I Lie To You
Scottish singer Sheena Easton can be seen performing the song at the beginning of the movie, making this the only Bond theme where the artist can actually be seen on screen singing the song. This was done because the credit sequence artist Maurice Binder liked Easton's look (who didn't?) and decided to add her to the credits.
Madonna did the theme song
and appeared as a fencing instructor in the Bond film Die Another Day
, but she is not seen singing the tune.
The phrase "For Your Eyes Only" generally refers to a confidential document that only the recipient is allowed to see. In this song, the phrase refers to the lady, who does things for her man (the debonair James Bond, perhaps?) that are only for him. He brings something out of her that makes her feel free, and the passion he elicits is reserved strictly for him. She might be an "open book," but only for him.
Blondie were originally offered this song but their frontwoman Debbie Harry didn't like the lyrics, which are of a submissive nature that doesn't suit her. Harry and Blondie guitarist Chris Stein then wrote their own song for the film, but Bond producer Albert Broccoli didn't rate it, so instead he asked Sheena Easton to sing the original song penned by Conti and Leeson. Blondie later included their song for the movie on their 1982 album The Hunter.
The song was nominated for an Academy Award in 1981 in the category "Best Music (Original Song)". Though it didn't win, Easton's success in the US that year resulted in her winning the Grammy Award for Best New Artist.
Thanks to her hit "Morning Train (Nine To Five)
," Sheena Easton was a fast-rising star, and was enlisted to help with promotion for the film. She joined Roger Moore, who played James Bond in the film, on a press junket to the US and Japan. Easton says that Moore had a wicked sense of humor and often made up stories to entertain reporters.
Bill Conti wanted Barbra Streisand to write the lyrics and Donna Summer to sing the song, but Streisand was busy with the film Yentl, and the studio had already decided on Easton, who brought Leeson to the project as lyricist. The song originally didn't mention the title until the end, but the movie's title designer, Maurice Binder, was insistent that the words "For Your Eyes Only" be sung as the title came onscreen.
Sheena Easton was only 22 years old when she released "For Your Eyes Only," making her the youngest person ever to perform a Bond song. She held that record until 2020 when 18-year-old Billie Eilish recorded the theme tune for No Time to Die.