Behind the Omega – Bond connection is Lindy Hemming, an Oscar-winning costume designer. She was responsible for casting 007’s watch in ‘Goldeneye‘. She said,
“I was convinced that Commander Bond, a naval man, a diver and a discreet gentleman of the world would wear the Seamaster with the blue dial.”
This is how 007 will be seen for the first time, in 1995 ‘Goldeneye‘, wearing the Omega Seamaster 300M Professional (Ref.: 2541.80, quartz version). It is also important to note that commercial considerations were not part of the initial choice. “There was no product placement incentive in 1995 whatsoever,” she said. Behind this choice for Omega were of course reasons such as the military background of Bond, but also the wish of Hemming to rethink the 007 character, making him “more modern and European.“ An interesting fact, also part of this initial decision, concerns Lindy herself. She remembered friends of her father who were former Navy men and most of them were wearing Omega watches, as part of their military equipment. This is how Commander Bond will follow the tradition of Omega delivering watches to British field agents (1).
Omega has been approached by EON Productions with the idea of a dive watch with a blue-coloured dial and thus, the initial choice for the brand was simple; it had to be the Seamaster Diver 300M Professional (1).
The same watch, but with automatic movement will be used by James Bond (Pierce Brosnan) also for the three following Bond movies: ‘Tomorrow Never Dies’ (Ref.: 2531.80, 1997), ‘The World Is Not Enough’ (Ref.: 2531.80, 1999) and ‘Die Another Day’ (Ref.: 2531.80, 2002). Next to the Omega ‘Seamaster Planet Ocean 600’ (Ref.: 2900.50.91) an updated version of the ‘Seamaster 300’ with the addition of the Co-Axial system is worn by Daniel Craig in ‘Casino Royale’ (Ref.: 2220.80, 2006) (1).
Omega Seamaster 300 Chronometer, Ref.: 2531.80 Dummy & SFX Prototype for ‘James Bond 007; The World Is Not Enough’, 1999
Category: dummy & proof of principle for SFX use in the movie
Description: Stainless steel cased, fragmentary watch. No case back. Stainless steel bezel with blue anodised inlay and luminous dot at ’12’. Brass, matte blue dial with shiny, wave pattern. Luminous hour markers, date opening at ‘3’. Brand and model info printed in white. White minute markers, drilled holes external of hour markers. Original hands attached to a purpose made white plastic disk replacing the movement. Original crowns.
Movement: no movement
Dimensions: Diam.: 43.7, lug – lug: 48, strap width at lugs: 20mm
Additional info: This is the only existing prototype for the special effects watch used during the movie ‘The World Is Not Enough’ of EON-Production’s James Bond 007 franchise issued in 1999. A dummy of the Omega ‘Seamaster 300 Chronometer’ has been used as a base. The Engineer working on the project has pierced 12 holes in the dial to permit blue LED lights to shine through.
The LED-construction is attached to the spring bars of the watch by means of white plastic insulated wire. A grey cable (10mm diameter) exits the LED – construction for a black box (120 x 57 x 31mm) containing a circuitry which permits the activation of different LED patterns. The whole system runs on a 6V battery. Additionally to the LED-construction mounted to the watch, there are two alternative versions, one of which shows an additional, partial ring of LED’s on the inside of the watch, latter configuration will be retained for the definitive version used for the movie.
A very similar LED – system will be used for promotional purposes after the release of the movie in the windows of Omega flagship stores just before Christmas 1999. The LED – system for these promotional watches is extremely simplified with a thin arrangement of LED’s also inside dummy versions of the watch with static light and no possible light pattern. An almost transparent, thin wire is exiting the back of the case. The watch was mounted on an ‘orb’ shaped support, reminding the use of the ‘light-up’ Seamaster during the specific, climatic scene of the movie.
As a ‘clin d’oil’ to the franchise, the date disc of this prototype has been fixed at ‘7’ by the engineer to remember the iconic ‘007’ number of the main character.
Provenance: This prototype has been obtained directly from the engineer who developed the LED – System for this special effect.