“For me, there is a romance to watches,” said the actor, repping Omega watches. “There is this idea of history and passing things on, but also the storytelling behind the timepieces.”
On Tuesday night, at the 100-year-old Mack Sennett Studios building on the edge of Los Angeles’ Silver Lake neighborhood, Omega and 2016 Oscar nominee Eddie Redmayne — one of the timepiece company’s newest brand ambassadors — debuted the new collection of Globemaster timepieces to an audience of 200 watch collectors, media from over 20 countries and Hollywood insiders including the actor’s manager, Jason Weinberg of Untitled Entertainment; his agent, CAA’s Josh Lieberman; and producer Cassian Elwes.
Omega, whose event included a dinner as well as a jazzy, speakeasy-themed afterparty, put a spotlight on its new Globemaster Annual Calendar, which will officially debut later this month in Switzerland at the Baselworld watch fair.
With a gray dial based on the brand’s classic “Pie Pan” Constellation, the Annual Calendar, with a case size increase from 39mm to 41mm and a tungsten carbide fluted bezel, is a sharp, vintage-inspired piece. The Globemaster watches, introduced last year, are also the world’s first watches to be certified as chronometers by both the Contrôle Officiel Suisse des Chronomètres and the Swiss Federal Institute of Metrology after rigorous testing.
Omega president and CEO Stephen Urquhart described Redmayne as a perfect fit for the brand: “He’s a great actor, very forward-looking, and the films he makes are quite modern and bold. At Omega, that’s what we’re trying to achieve — modern and bold.”
To hear Redmayne talk about watches, it seems the link with Omega is more than the typical brand ambassadorship as his love of the watchmaker runs deep, stemming from admiring his father’s timepiece as a child.
“My dad wore an Omega — a beautiful, classic DeVille. It was a gold watch with a brown antique strap. It was something that I looked at growing up — my dad was [a] style icon for me and still is — and that’s how I was introduced to Omega,” Redmayne told the crowd.
“For me, there is a romance to watches,” he continued. “There is this idea of history and passing things on, but also the storytelling behind the timepieces. Their history [is] unrivaled. Their watches were first on the Moon, flown by the British and U.S. Air Forces — and that creates a legacy.”
Omega also has a long history with the James Bond franchise. In the most recent installment, 2016’s Spectre, Daniel Craig wore a limited-edition Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra 150M Master Co-Axial.
Eric Christian Olsen — who stars on the long-running CBS procedural NCIS: Los Angeles as Detective Marty Deeks, who wears an Omega Seamaster 300 — wore his own personal Omega to the event, a titanium and rose gold chronograph. He echoed Redmayne’s thoughts on Omega’s lasting legacy.
Olsen, who bought the watch 18 years ago as a gift to himself, is still attached to the timepiece: “I did my very first movie, I was 20 years old and living in Malibu and a mentor of mine — who was a successful businessman as well as a renaissance man told me, ‘You can wear whatever you want, but you have to have a great timepiece.’ We went watch shopping and I fell in love with the watch I’m wearing tonight. After 25 movies and hundreds of episodes of television, it’s still my favorite watch because it carries those memories of that time in my life.”
Later, Redmayne, who wore a gray dial Omega Globemaster with a gray alligator strap to this year’s Oscars, said, “As actors, we have to turn up to a lot of different events and promoting films, you have to get into a suit, you have to turn up on the red carpet … there are lots of different things you are thinking about, but wearing something that is classic, with a modern edge to it, as the Globemaster does, is a wonderful thing, as you don’t have to think about it. It has an ease to it. It has a legacy and history to it, but is also totally contemporary.”