Joining Theron in what’s known as the “Cinema Squad” is Brad Pitt, Adam Driver and Daniel Wu.
Arguably the best actor to ever come out of South Africa (with no disrespect to Arnold Vosloo and The Mummy movies), Charlize Theron is one of several talented thespians to become a brand ambassador for one of the longest-standing Swiss luxury watch brands, Breitling.
Theron, the star of many hit films like Atomic Blonde, Mad Max: Fury Road, and Monster, best be careful to make sure this watch partnership doesn’t end badly. Theron landed herself in hot water in 2008 when she was spotted wearing a Christian Dior watch at an event – while she was being paid by Raymond Weil to be a watch ambassador. Breitling will certainly hope that Theron can stick to its watches for future public appearances.
Breitling’s choice to recruit Theron, Pitt, Driver and Wu is definitely a nice move, considering that luxury watch brands are all scrambling after each other to get the biggest names on board. Many of these watches by Breitling will sell upwards of R690,330 so you’d hope that the marketing effort of enlisting these huge names – which we’re guessing doesn’t come cheap – will pay off in the end with a lot of sales and brand awareness that only a celebrity can bring. The Cinema Squad is only a part of the recruitment drive, however, as there are also similarly big names in the Explorer Squad, Surfer Squad, and Triathlon Squad.
Despite being in the business of making luxury watches since 1884, Breitling knows full well that it has a tough task on its hand of trying to compete not only with other Swiss watch companies such as Rolex, Omega, and Hublot, but the seemingly unstoppable smartwatch movement as well. Although exact figures have never been released, the Apple Watch is predicted to have sold close to 33 million units since its release in 2015, which generates to roughly US $12 billion in sales. Heritage or not, that figure is hard to beat for traditional watch companies like Breitling and its rivals.
Apple has done remarkably well without a major celebrity representing the watches, but the brand name alone is clearly high-profile enough to sell millions of products every year. Breitling, on the other hand, may indeed have the legacy but understands that it had to bring out the big guns in order to stay relevant in the watch industry. Legacy, after all, doesn’t pay the bills.