Watches at Auction - Marlon Brando's Rolex

The highlights of the upcoming Christie’s auction in Geneva (‘Passion for Time’, 6 November) include the Rolex GMT-Master Ref. 1675 worn by Marlon Brando when playing Colonel Walter E. Kurtz in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1979 classic “Apocalypse Now”. Marlon Brando ‘customised’ this piece by hand-engraving his name on the caseback.  In addition, as Petra Brando Fischer recalls: “....he wore the watch on the set of Apocalypse Now in the Philippines, being asked  to take it off during filming as it would stand out too much.” She said her father argued that ‘If they’re looking at my watch, then I’m not doing my job as an actor,’ and the powers that be on set eventually relented.


Brando went a step further, by removing the bezel as well as the steel bracelet, which he replaced with a sober black strap, and pared down to essentials, allegorically mirrored the character of Kurtz.
Estimate: CHF 1,000,000-2,000,000

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