If I were the boss at Walter or Smith and Wesson, I would GIVE my pistols to the Hollywood company that supplies them to the TV and Movie people. The publicity is worth its weight in gold as we see by this posting.
People notice what the TV characters use...which is why product placement is such big business.
I don't think it wouldn't be worth it for Walther to give free rights to their P99 for TV productions. You and I would instantly recognize the P99 onscreen, or any other common firearm. However, to the majority of people, it's just a 'gun'. Their feelings for the show wouldn't change if it were a Walther, a Glock, a Sig, whatever and it wouldn't influence them to go out and get that particular firearm.
Movies are a slightly different story. Most people would still not care or recognize one firearm over another. But movies have a hold on the public that television does not. Movie franchises (Bond, The Matrix, etc) are stronger than most TV shows. More people are likely to want to find out what firearm a particular character used in such and such a movie.
I remember seeing a History Channel special on the history of the magnum. When they got to the .44 Magnum, they talked about the movie Dirty Harry and how sales of the .44 magnum rocketed after that movie came out. Most people never shot their .44 magnum that they bought from movie influence.
I wonder how many people bought the P99 based solely on seeing it on the Bond movies? I became aware of the P99 through the Bond movies. I did a little research and then I held one and I was hooked.
I also became interested in the P99 series after seeing one used in the Bond movies. After researching it, testing one, and daydreaming for a while, I bought one. I now plan on carrying it as my primary on-duty weapon once my holster gets here (I had to special order it).
Hmm...it'd be interesting to find out how many people bought a P99 solely based on wanting James Bond's sidearm. Those people probably do not post here. They just have the gun in their closet or something as a conversation piece among guy friends.
i had a P99 for about three years before i even knew it was the new bond gun. i like the old sean connery/roger moore bond movies but never got into the new ones. anyone who buys a pistol [/U]solely because they saw it on tv, in a movie or, worst of all, heard about it in a rap song is a moron. choose your weapons because they are reliable, safe, accurate, comfortable, beautiful and practical. a P99 is all of those (for me). you shouldn't own a gun if you want it for a conversation piece or to impress your friends. a gun is a tool, a dangerous tool to be respected. 'cool' should never be an issue when buying a weapon.
BTW-this is my first post, just found this forum! i own an all german (KK markings, etc.) P99 .40 and want more P99's!
Mhmm, I had some extra time on my hands right around 96 when it first came out and was doing a lot of research on firearms at the time. How they actually work, what's used by military/police, etc...
I'm studying mechanical engineering so I love almost everything about the P99. The little edges the gun has over (in my opinion) virtually every other gun out there. I really liked the striker system and lack of protruding parts. I think the magazine releases, lack of manual safety, and interchangeable backstraps were great. (Yes I know the first two can be found on other guns too)
But in the end, it's just plain GORGEOUS! (And made by Walther-- a big plus in my view)
I'm on a student budget and knew I was only going to be able to buy one handgun until I get commissioned so for me it's never been a question which one I would buy.
Oh and regarding TV sightings: I'm not sure if this is one of the other shows already mentioned but two days ago there was a movie/show (not sure) on SciFi channel with the guy that played Duncan McCloud on the Highlander series and one of the main characters was a black guy trying to kill a vampire (no it's not Blade) and he was using a P99.