My Three Watch Wardrobe: Hollywood Director Mr Paul Feig
Can you pick three watches – just three – to build your perfect, fantasy collection? That’s the question behind our new series: men from around the world, united by a fascination with watches, choose the timepieces that best represent them, money no object.
First up is Mr Paul Feig. Even under lockdown, the actor, director and MR PORTER Style Council Member was impeccably attired in a brown three-piece suit, pocket square and tie for our Zoom conversation. So it came as little surprise to see that his fantasy watch purchases ran towards the more flamboyant end of the horological spectrum. Or perhaps he had just embraced the “fantasy” element of the exercise with gusto. “I have been told a few times, mostly by my wife, that I have expensive tastes,” he laughs. “Wait, I don’t have to buy these, do I?”
Watches had been a point of interest since childhood. “My dad was obsessed with finding slim watches, and I found them all fascinating. Even at an early age, I saw that watches could be practical, but they could also be a source of comedy and flair. I had Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck watches and even one with the Bay City Rollers faces on.”
However, it was through his wife that the real watch bug took hold, first thanks to the birthday gift of a TAG Heuer, and later, when working in London, a collector friend of hers, who introduced him to Mayfair’s vintage Rolex dealers. Decades later, he’s a self-confessed watch addict. “I’m not like some people who can tell you all the minutiae,” he says. “I can’t even pronounce some of the names. But it is an obsession.”
Cartier Tonneau XL Dual Time Limited Edition
“I’m obsessed with dual time zone watches, because all I do is travel in my work. I’m always somewhere where I need to know the time back home. Way back when, my wife got me a really cheap watch that had two faces on it that I could use for that. And that was always so cool, but it wasn’t very good. And I have my Rolex GMTs, but this is just beautiful. You know, I’m always in a suit and tie, but I always try to have a dash of sprezzatura, some colour, and I’m always looking for things that catch your eye.
“It has that Cartier shape, the big, long shape that they don’t make as much anymore. And I really enjoy that it’s a hand-winding watch, too. There’s something lovely about that. It’s a fun morning and evening ritual.”
Jaeger-LeCoultre Geophysic Automatic Tourbillon
“I like simple watches, honestly I do, but I also like really complicated watches and this one really caught my eye. As a movie director, I always say to anyone asking my advice, if you’re going to direct a movie buy a really nice watch because you’re going to be looking at it all day long. You see the typical picture of a director looking thoughtful or intense – no, the typical picture of a director is looking at their watch, pulling their hair out, saying, ‘Oh my God, we’ve only got an hour left?’
“The other thing I love about it is the world time element. I just like anything where it’s got names of cities around the outside. Plus, this has so much else going on – the map, the decoration, the tourbillon and the colour. I love the blue.”
Roger Dubuis Excalibur Blacklight Limited Edition
“This is the blingiest watch ever. I'm not afraid to wear a watch like that. I just think it's just too much fun. Usually I steer away from gems and diamonds because it feels like a bit much. But if you're going to do it, you have to really go for it. It’s got everything, these coloured gems in threes and fours, even the bits that glow in the dark – you can’t go wrong with that.
“It’s a conversation piece, and the conversation will never end! It is almost completely nonsensical, which I love even more. It's really hard to read, which immediately makes me laugh because like either you have a really practical watch or have one that is just so bananas, you know? You can’t be somewhere where you need to what time it is. I don’t think I could turn up on set wearing this, either. They’ll say ‘we're paying him way too much! Fire him immediately!’”