What a week in watches it’s been, people.
A singular event overshadowed all else for the horologically observant among us—and that event was a photocall for a new Michael Mann film held in Venice. Slated for release on Christmas, Ferrari stars Adam Driver as Enzo Ferrari, founder of the automotive dynasty, and Patrick Dempsey as Piero Taruffi, an Italian Formula One driver during the 1950s. While Mann and Driver each sported cool timepieces (see below), it was McDreamy’s gold Heuer chronograph that stole the show.
The reference 1158CHN is a solid-gold Carrera, Heuer’s beloved racing chronograph that debuted in 1963. Housed in a tonneau-shaped case, this particular reference is powered by the brand’s Calibre 12 automatic movement—a variant of one of the world’s first automatic chrono movements—and debuted several years later in 1970. Representing the high end of the Carrera collection, it was the model’s designer and company scion Jack Heuer’s favorite timepiece. The watch is a smart choice for Dempsey because of a sweet tie-in with Ferrari: this reference was given to Heuer ambassadors and the Italian carmaker’s drivers between 1971 and 1978.
With its champagne dial, black chronograph totalizers, and solid gold case, the 1158CHN is simply a baller watch—but it wasn’t the only gold chronograph that Dempsey wore while promoting his new film. On the red carpet, he paired his tux with another model from the same maker, a TAG Heuer Carrera x Porsche RS 2.7 Limited Edition. Debuting last year, this solid-gold watch celebrates 50 years of the Porsche RS 2.7…which is most decidedly not a Ferrari. But it is a killer, automotive-themed chrono from TAG Heuer, whose long association with the Ferrari team in the 1970s is part of horological lore.
Measuring 42mm and housed in the brand’s modern Carrera case with mushroom pushers and Calibre Heuer 02 automatic movement, it’s one of two limited-edition pieces (the other being a stainless steel variant) honoring what is arguably one of the coolest 911s to ever roll off the assembly line at Stuttgart. A racing version of the Carrera, the RS 2.7 is a variant of the 911S produced in approximately 1,500 examples, the first 500 of which are extra lightweight, $1M+ cars.
All this to say: If you’re looking to spot some A-list wristwear, the red carpet debut of a Ferrari-themed movie—starring a real-life racecar driver who’s sponsored by a company that makes racing watches—is clearly the place to do it.
Adam Driver’s Rolex Oyster Perpetual
While attending the Ferrari photocall, Driver sported a most excellent, understated bit of wrist candy—a blue-dialed Rolex Oyster Perpetual. Debuting in 1926, the “OP” is responsible for much of the Crown’s success, having cemented the concept of a highly water-resistant case paired with a reliable automatic movement in the minds of the global watch buyer. Driver’s version—which seems to be an Oyster Perpetual 41 ref. 114300—is the sort of understated watch that looks appropriate just about anywhere.
Steve Carell’s Platinum Rolex Daytona
Peeking out from behind actor Steve Carell’s cuff at the Dutch Grand Prix was a platinum Rolex Cosmograph Daytona—an appropriate choice at a Formula One race. The Office star is a known Rolex fan and has been spotted in the past wearing a Submariner as well as a GMT-Master II, but a platinum-cased Daytona represents an entirely different strata of collecting. Easily identifiable by its ice-blue dial and chocolate brown accents, the watch’s price on the secondary market (where mere mortals have to turn in order to source one) is well into the six figures.
Michael Mann’s Bulgari BVLGARI LNIB Carbongold New York Limited Edition
In keeping with our Ferrari theme, lauded American director Michael Mann rocked an unusual watch next to his stars Dempsey and Driver at the Ferrari photocall. The Bulgari BVLGARI LNIB Carbongold New York Limited Edition is a quartz-powered 38mm chronograph, housed in a carbon case with a matching carbon bezel. Extra points must be awarded to Mr. Mann, who can certainly afford to wear whatever darn watch he pleases, and clearly chose to wear something he likes. (Fun fact: Al Pacino’s Lt. Vincent Hanna also sported a Bulgari in Mann’s Heat.)
Various Baller Watches at the US Open
There’s always incredible watch spotting to be done at the US Open, but 2023’s edition delivered in a particularly grand fashion: In addition to the sea of AP and Rolex seen in the stands on the wrists of Jimmy Butler, Queen Latifah, and J Balvin, there were also two very special watches on court: American players Jessica Pegula and Tommy Paul both rocked De Bethune’s DB28xs Starry Seas, a $90,000 titanium masterpiece with an insane “random” guilloché dial. (Meanwhile, President Barack Obama rocked a significantly more practical Apple Watch.)