A Modern Classic: OMEGA’s Iconic Speedmaster ’57 Meets Its Match In George Clooney

A Modern Classic: OMEGA’s Iconic Speedmaster ’57 Meets Its Match In George Clooney

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Even in a constellation heaving with as many stars as that of OMEGA, George Clooney projects a singular, inimitable sphere of influence – cool, confident, grounded by better natures. The American actor, who is to a generation of cinemagoers the gold (or is that silver?) standard against which all other leading men are judged, Clooney has long been a pivotal ambassador for the brand.

Whether astride the red carpet or in any number of on-screen adventures, an OMEGA is never far from the iconic actor/filmmaker’s wrist. And yet, despite what surely amounts to a lifetime’s worth of De Ville and Aqua Terra campaigns, Clooney’s ambassadorship (of the rejuvenated Speedmaster ’57) is his most organic team-up with OMEGA to date. Allow us to explain.

A Classic Returns – Cooler And More Capable Than Ever

OMEGA Speedmaster 57

Handsomely styled and infused with a cutting-edge spirit, it’s small wonder why OMEGA chose to launch the Speedmaster 57 using the Cloon-dog’s famously suave visage. But even shorn of its associations with the Hollywood heavy, this is an OMEGA chronograph that arrives with its own enviable backstory.

First launched in 1957, the original Speedmaster was a product made for the Golden Era of motor racing. Unlike successive generations – which became synonymous with OMEGA’s legendary work on the Apollo and Gemini missions – these Speedmaster 57s (as collectors would later dub them) are the most grounded, timeless expression of the Speedy lineage.

OMEGA Speedmaster 57

The iconic broad arrow hands and engraved tachymetre scale – look out for that ‘dot over 90’! – were game-changing additions to sports chronographs of the 1950s; and this year, have been refreshed as part of a wider overhaul of the entire Speedmaster 57 collection – now consisting of 8 references in stainless steel, shod either on calf leather straps ($12,725) or OMEGA’s patented ‘comfort release’ bracelet ($13,200).

For lovers of mid-century design – in architecture and automobiles – words aren’t probably all that pivotal to explaining this watch’s (immediately obvious) aesthetic appeal. But for posterity: the design language here is avowedly inspired by ‘Broad Arrow’ Speedies of yore – down to the versatile 40.5mm case, deftly balanced sandwich dial and usage of a bi-compax register layout. It is, without wishing to be glib, peak Clooney: precisely what you’d expect the award-winning actor/writer/producer to have affixed to his wrist while he cruising down manicured cobblestones on the banks of Lake Como.

Speedmaster 57

Now, as then, the modern Speedmaster 57 is also a crucible for innovation. Its golden-era looks are juxtaposed against one of the most technically advanced chronograph movements that OMEGA is able to field in 2022 – the Calibre 9906. Overlaid with cutting edge performance enhancements, this classic movement architecture (i.e. of the column wheel variety) offers a hefty dose of functionality to go with the joy of a hand-wound chronograph. Like a manual gearbox, the tactility just hits different.

And how’s this for delightful overengineering? A ‘Master Chronometer’ rating. Bestowed on timepieces that surpass OMEGA’s own stringent METAS testing requirements , these new vintage-flavoured Speedies offer contemporary precision in a range of the world’s most challenging environment. And, resistance to magnetic fields of up to 15,000 gauss – just in case you were fretting about leaving your watch next to any bluetooth speakers.

Clooney’s Choice

In keeping with that amusing human tradition of ‘life imitating art’, Clooney has been an ardent fan of the Speedmaster (in its many and varied guises) for over a decade – even before the arrival of the newly revamped ’57. Most notably, the A-list actor wore a ‘Moonwatch’ to memorable effect in The American way back in 2010, and in the intervening years, it’s easy to see why he’s become the de facto face of the modern Speedmaster whenever it crops up in conversation.

An ever-evolving platform through which OMEGA explores the future of watchmaking, it’s a fitting embodiment of all those qualities that have made the man himself a household name. Sure, you could describe the Speedmaster 57 as a handsome, heritage-inflected sports watch – the kind likely to get better with age – but it’s also surprisingly modern in its outlook. As Clooney well knows, ‘classic’ doesn’t have to mean boring.

This article is sponsored by OMEGA. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Boss Hunting.

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