Best known for his suave attire and explosive gadgets in the seemingly unstoppable 007 movies series, James Bond never does less than impress. Whether played by Daniel Craig, Roger Moore, Sean Connery or one of the other three actors that are solely remembered by pub quiz teams, one thing has remained constant in nearly all of his cinematic incarnations since 1962 – his wristwatch.
The Rolex is almost synonymous with Her Majesty’s most special agent and played a crucial role in many of his most celebrated adventures. In 1969’s On Her Majesty’s Secret Service it was a Rolex Pré-Daytona watch that was Bond’s timepiece of choice.
Back in 1962’s Dr No, it was a Rolex Explorer that adorned the wrist of Sean Connery. In subsequent escapades the agent sported both a Rolex Submariner and a Rolex Chronograph. It is, however, the 1969 Rolex Pré-Daytona that has been exciting collectors. The watch is up for sale at the leading French auction house, Artcurial at Hôtel Hermitage, Monte-Carlo and is estimated to go for upwards of €200,000 (HK$1.75 million). It comes with a copy of the original invoice from Bucherer Interlaken, the Swiss Rolex retailer, dated 23 October 1968, with the handwritten words: “This is the watch for James Bond.”
After filming wrapped On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, EON Productions, the company then behind the 007 franchise, decided to sell Bond’s personal wardrobe and accessories including the Rolex. It was acquired by a member of the production team.