Tom Cruise Knows What It Takes to Elevate Watches and Blockbusters

Welcome to Watches of the Week, where we’ll track the rarest, wildest, and most covetable watches spotted on celebrities.

Tom Cruise’s Top Gun: Maverick could have merely been a money-minting blockbuster sequel. Instead, a couple of well-placed tearful exchanges between Cruise and Miles Teller vaulted the movie into Best Picture consideration. Cruise’s Rolex GMT-Master II is similarly elevated.

The GMT-Master was originally developed as an everyday tool watch for Pan-Am flight crew members who needed to track two time zones at once. This already makes the watch a nice choice for a guy famous for playing flying ace Maverick. But Cruise’s GMT is much more luxurious—more Emirates than Spirit. While most GMTs are steel, Cruise’s is made with substantial white gold. 

How can you tell? Rolex, always happy to help its collectors flaunt their status, added an easy visual cue to every white-gold GMT. When this version of the red-and-blue “Pepsi” was first released in 2014, it came with the new-and-improved ceramic bezel and a standard black dial. But when Rolex released a nearly identical version of the watch with the same red-and-blue color combo and ceramic bezel in stainless steel a few years later, it started pairing white-gold versions of the watch with navy blue dials. Rolex even went back to customers who already bought the white-gold GMT with a black dial and offered them to swap it out with a blue one so it wouldn’t be confused with the steel that the riff-raff wear. Cruise obviously understands that sometimes the difference between luxury and mainstream is found in small details. 

Michael Regan – FIFA/Getty Images

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Lionel Messi’s Patek Philippe Grand Complication 

There are multiple shots from the Best FIFA Football Awards ceremony of Messi longingly touching or staring down at his watch during. And it’s hard to blame him. If you were wearing this Patek you’d probably want to brush your fingers against the cool platinum case or suddenly find yourself wondering whether the moon is waxing or waning that night. 

Adam DiMarco’s Tiffany & Co. 1837 Makers

Is co-starring in White Lotus the new fast track to Hollywood darling status? I think so! Dimarco attended the SAG awards wearing this adorable Tiffany & Co. watch. While the jeweler is probably best known for stamping its name on other makers’ timepieces—the Tiffany-stamped Patek Philippe Nautilus drives collectors particularly nuts—it released this good-on-its-own 1837 Makers in 2019. No stolen watch brand valor necessary. 

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Orlando Bloom’s Patek Philippe Calatrava 

Many red-carpet regulars have pulled off Patek Philippe’s Calatrava, the brand’s no-nonsense buttoned-up dress watch. Fewer have rocked this version of the Calatrava, engraved with fronds and a little gecko, of which  there are only six in existence. But can it save you 15% or more on car insurance? 

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John Krasinski’s IWC Portugieser Chronograph 

Awards season can be a bittersweet time for watch spotting. So much of the red-carpet goodness is the product of behind-the-scenes brand placement, rather than watch-nerd passion. Krasinski pulling up to the SAG awards wearing his very own Portugieser is a welcome example of the latter. And this watch fulfills all the roles we expect of a great watch. Krasinski has worn it with a white T-shirt on set as well as walking out of a nice dinner clutching a doggy bag. Only a true diehard would bring that same watch with him onto the red carpet like Krasinski. 

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