If you found yourself staring at the wrist of your favorite movie character, trying desperately to discover the name of the watch he or she wears, your diagnosis is more than easy. You are deeply in love with timepieces. Yes, it is pretty addictive, but be relaxed. The worst that could happen to you is losing the clue what the movie is about. In most cases, you will catch the story later. Well, unless you watch Inception. I have already discovered – Leonardo DiCaprio wears Tag Heuer Carrera Automatic. So, watch that movie carefully!
There are so many watchmakers that profited greatly from the roles in films, taking the most from their close links with movie stars. Sometimes, it is pretty clear that a watch on the actor’s wrist means nothing more than advertising. In other cases, timepieces are used for art purposes. Agents, spies, soldiers, super-heroes, detectives, criminals, seducers, businessmen, family men… their strong characters and personal images are something that we remember long after the final sequence and wristwatches are usually very important parts of these characters, as well as cars they ride and clothes they wear.
The element of time is crucial for every story. Directors use it smartly to increase tension and create dramatic ending. A countdown clock on the explosive mechanism “plays” a bad guy role and what would a hero do without precise information about time. Just try to imagine what the world would look like if Omega did not produce such accurate Seamasters for James Bond. In Quantum of Solace, Daniel Craig wears Seamaster Planet Ocean 600 m Chronometer which is powered by a superb in-house Co-Axial Caliber 2500 self-winding mechanism. Beside its great performances, the refined sport elegance of Omega’s signature timepiece completes the perfect outfit of the world’s most famous spy which neither girl can resist.
If the American Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences brought in the award for the best timepiece in movies, this great diving model with amazing water-resistance up to 600 meters would probably be the best one in the Spy/Agent category, ahead of Rolex Submariner Date and Tudor Heritage Chrono watches that agents William Brandt (played by Jeremy Renner) and Ethan Hunt (Tom Cruise) wear in Mission Impossible 4. Rolex Submariner was also a choice of Sean Connery (in the legendary Bond’s adventure From Russia with Love), Gabriel Byrne (in Usual Suspects), Robert De Niro (in Killer Elite), Sharon Stone (in Sphere) as well as a choice of Denzel Washington in his role of the US Army officer in Courage under Fire.
Although it looks pretty cool, the Hamilton Ventura does not have any chance among such a tough competition. I saw it for the first time on the wrist of Will Smith while he was saving the planet from bugs in the movie Men in Black, but this model actually debuted on a big screen in Blue Hawaii, Elvis Presley’s film from 1961. (Elvis wore his personal Ventura from 1957, with a stainless steel case and a black leather strap.)
However, it would have even less chances in “the Sexy Characters’ watches” category, competing George Clooney’s Omega DeVille Hour Vision from Up in the Air, Rolex GMT Master II timepiece that Brad Pitt wears in Ocean’s Thirteen or Breitling Chronomat B01 which is a great watch despite its bulky look on Justin Timberlake’s wrist in the romantic comedy Friend With Benefits. Unlike Justin, Ryan Gosling found the perfect match with his IWC Portuguese Chronograph with a white dial which he wears in the crime mystery Fracture. (This is the same model that Jamie Foxx wears in Miami Vice – a version with a black dial).
The sexiest lady’s character that wears a watch is definitely Lara Croft, played by Angelina Jolie. In the adventurous blockbuster Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, the multifunctional display of Tissot T-Touch helps this heroine to save the Pandora’s Box. In the 2007 film Transformers, Megan Fox (as Mikaela Banes) appears with a Red Monkey Ladies’ Barracuda Jetson timepiece. The beautiful actress was definitely a perfect choice for the worldwide promotion of this cool looking watch with a brown leather strap and a black dial. If you are looking for the watch that can follow the perfect feminine beauty, you will find it in the 1976 hit Cassandra Crossing. Playing Jennifer Rispoli Chamberlain, Sophia Loren wears stunning, yellow gold Rolex Lady Datejust watch.
Tough Guys Wear Robust Watches
If I need a quick decision, I will probably choose Terminator rather than John Rambo for the personal bodyguard. However, if you ask me which of the watches that these heroes worn I would prefer to see on my wrist, I could not give you a straight answer. Sylvester Stallone wears Panerai Luminor Marina, a vintage looking sport watch that perfectly reflects the Spartan character of the hero that fights against Burman militants, trying to save kidnapped villagers and American missioners.
For his third appearance as the Terminator, Arnold Schwarzenegger chose Audemars Piguet’s Royal Oak Offshore T3 watch, a gigantic, 53 mm sport model crafted in titanium. Each role had the huge influence on the worldwide popularity of two high-end brands. At the same time, these models are among the most recognizable “movies’ watches” that instantly remind us of timeless action heroes.
Another actor with a serious “tough guy” reputation, Jason Statham, has the similar taste as Stallone. In Transporter 2, he wears Panerai Luminor Chrono Daylight 44mm, a great looking, brush steel chronograph with a black leather strap, powered with a high-end Panerai’s Calibre OP XII self-winding mechanism. Another great piece for the professional action is Kobold Arctic Diver 500 m wristwatch with the diameter of 46 mm and a custom paracord strap, which an actor and former professional wrestler Steve Austin wears in Hunt to Kill. Great watch and not so great movie. It is also worth to mention Jean Reno’s Citizen Aqualand Promaster in the iconic Big Blue. And the winner in the “tough guys category” is Jason Statham’s Luminor Chrono Daylight.
What the Funny Guys Wear?
The king of the British comedy, John Cleese, plays an uncompromising British school headmaster that can get with the series of unexpected events. He is desperately trying to go “Clockwise” with Seiko A718 digital watch at his wrist. Unlike Cleese, it seems like Eddie Murphy has a pretty serious watch for a comedian. IWC Aquatimer Chronograph looks stunning at his wrist in the action comedy “Tower Heist” and I can say this is the most beautiful piece ever worn in a comedy.
A bird enthusiast, played by Owen Wilson in The Big Year enjoys his interesting hobby with a Rolex GMT Master II at the wrist. Ben Stiller’s character from the hilarious comedy Meet the Parents definitely has more harmonious relationship with his Swiss Army Original 24220.
Playing an average ex government-hired super-assassin in the action comedy Killers, Ashton Kutcher wears great looking Hamilton Khaki Field King Scuba Chrono watch, while his charming partner played by Katherine Heigl wears Cartier Tank Francaise. It is interesting that Kathleen Robertson wears the same model (adorned with diamonds) in the dark parody Scary Movie 2.
There are so many other movie watches that cannot be forgotten, such as the iconic Steve McQueen’s Hauer Monaco from the movie Le Mans, Omega Speedmaster which seems like a logical choice for the space adventure Apollo 13 (The entire crew of the spacecraft wears legendary Moonwatch.), Breitling Chrono Avenger that you can see on Leonardo DiCaprio’s wrist in Blood Diamonds…
Do not despair. Watches that movie stars wear are sometimes surprisingly affordable. At the first place, there are Casio G-Shock watches that have appeared in dozens of films and we can easily call them “favorite timepieces of movie stars”. This story is not complete without mentioning a Suunto Vector. Did you watch a thrilling movie 127 Hours, based on the true story of the American mountain climber Aron Ralston, who was being trapped by a boulder in Robbers Roost,Utah for nearly five days? If you did, you could not miss the great fitness watch that literary was the only Ralston’s companion during his struggle with nature.