James Bond nowadays wears an Omega Seamaster Planet Ocean 600m, but in the past he had all kinds of watches, among them a number of Rolex watches. The famous James Bond Rolex is of course the Submariner, although Ian Fleming wore a Rolex Explorer himself and was probably referring to this Explorer as well in his books. Dell Deaton wrote an excellent article, including some nice photographs of Ian wearing his Explorer, for the US based magazine WatchTime.

However, it seems that Daniel Craig doesn’t take this Omega sponsorship (for EON movie productions) too seriously, as he has been repeatedley spotted with Rolex watches from his personal collection. Besides his vintage Rolex Submariner 6538, identical to the one that Sean Connery wore in Goldfinger, he owns this vintage Daytona as well. It is a Rolex Daytona 6263, as Jake posted on his excellent Rolex Blogspot.

Someone over at the German R-L-X forum posted this snapshot of Daniel Craig and his vintage Daytona ref.6263.

What do you think? Should James Bond be wearing his inventor’s Explorer? Or at least a Rolex? Or just whoever sponsors him? Please leave your thoughts in the comments!

  • Daniel Craig plays Bond more towards the way it was in the books, more a real person instead of a superhero. Ian Fleming was quite specific in his choice for items for his character. So a Rolex might be more suitable with his character. But what about the car? Changing the Aston back to a Bentley?

    But….brands are not viewed the same as they used to. Rolex, Omega, Aston Martin, Bentley, they are all have different perspectives in a different world, deliberately marketed to more diverse targetgroups with more history then when Ian Fleming wrote his novels. Rolex went from a toolwatch to a statussymbol, Bentley went from sportscar manufacturer to luxury car manufacturer, Aston Martin went from almost bankrupt to alsmost bankrupt to it’s first profit. The cold war is over, a hot one has begun.

    I think the real question is; the world around Bond has changed, should Bond change with it? If answered no; give the man his Rolex (Timothy Dalton wore his own Submariner Date while filming The Living Daylights and License to Kill) If answered yes; marketing rules the consumer, give the man whoever is willing to pay the biggest sponsorfee.

    My personal opinion; seeing Bond in a Rolex would be great. Going for the big sponsorfee also takes away the artistic freedom you have to shape any character in any movie.

  • Good and relevant questions here.

    As I wrote in my “WatchTime” article, evidence clearly shows that it was the original intent of Ian Fleming that James Bond wear a cheap, expendable watch. This was at least the case through the first half of his books, and it makes sense on a number of fronts. Younger, less established agent (personally and in the field); lower profile, yet perfectly acceptable (note another “WatchTime” article that references US Presidents who’ve worn Timex wristwatches).

    If the current incarnation of James Bond is set for another move to get that much closer to the character as designed by Mr. Fleming, then a cheap, expendable watch for the next film after “Quantum of Solace” would be in order.

    With all due respect to Martin, who has also Replied here, I disagree with the argument that the Rolex brand image of today is substantially different from what Ian Fleming intended when putting Agent 007 in an Explorer for “On Her Majesty’s Secret Service.” I think it represented a maturity of the character, and that it was intended to be so. Would it make sense then for Mr. Craig to wear an Explorer I in his fourth outing as Bond? Sure. But only if it were the current model at the time, however that may look in evolution.

    But “any” Rolex? Or, in particular, a Submariner model? I don’t think so. Again, certainly not if one is trying to get it consistent with Fleming’s vision for the character. I currently have an article in peer review for publication in June where I lay out evidence that Ian Fleming resoundingly rejected the choice of the Sub for Bond (with clear knowledge of that choice for Sean Connery in “Dr. No”). And, again, to my current “WatchTime” article, it’s pretty clear that Mr. Fleming liked tough, versatile perpetuals, but not complications in James Bond watches.

    Thanks for considering this feedback.

    Dell Deaton

  • Curt

    Just like Pierce Brosnan, Omega sponsors whomever plays Bond not the actor. So Craig where a Rolex is consistent with the sponsorship arrangement. Pierce Brosnan is seen quite often in Cartier and most recently a Panerai on the Panerai bracelet.


  • @Martin: Thanks for your large reply! I don’t think Rolex changed that much, or how the customer looks at Rolex. They were always relatively expensive watches, the luxury models as well as the ‘toolwatches’. I don’t think that the average diver bought a Rolex in the 1960s, and they [divers] still don’t. I agree with you on the fact that it would be great if he would wear a Rolex (again) in the next movie(s).

    @Dell: Thanks for your reply Dell! I am very interested in your June-issue article on the rejection of a Rolex Submariner for Bond.

    @Curt: I know, but it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. As an actor, you are a public figure, so these brands should come up with better contracts to have them wear their watches in their ‘public’ private lifes 🙂

  • JB Fan

    I am a traditionalist. If Craig is trying to rejuvenate a traditional bond persona, he should be wearing a Rolex.