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Bonhams New Bond Street Fine Watches Auction Blows Up


WEBWIRE
Lot 33
Rolex. A historically interesting stainless steel automatic wristwatch worn by Vanessa Redgrave in the 1966 film ’Blow Up’
Submariner, Ref: 5513, Circa 1966
Fine Watches
21 June 2023, 14:00 BST
London, New Bond Street

£20,000 - £30,000
Lot 33 Rolex. A historically interesting stainless steel automatic wristwatch worn by Vanessa Redgrave in the 1966 film ’Blow Up’ Submariner, Ref: 5513, Circa 1966 Fine Watches 21 June 2023, 14:00 BST London, New Bond Street £20,000 - £30,000

Fine Watches

21 Jun 2023

London, New Bond Street

Rolex. A historically interesting stainless steel automatic wristwatch worn by Vanessa

Redgrave in the 1966 film ’Blow Up’

Submariner, Ref: 5513, Circa 1966

Cult 1960s film ’Blow Up’ Rolex offered at auction for the first time

London, New Bond Street - Bonhams Fine Watches sale on 21 June will have on offer a watch that has been sought over the years with many regarding it as one of the most coveted watches seen on the silver screen – the Rolex Reference 5513 Submariner worn by Vanessa Redgrave in the cult 1960s film ’Blow Up’ has an estimate of £20,000-30,000.

The Rolex Reference 5513 Submariner, circa 1965, has become a holy grail of watches with Rolex enthusiasts long discussing the whereabouts of the watch with it being assumed lost or destroyed, in fact the watch has been in the possession of a member of the original ’Blow Up’ production team, a construction manager who went on to work in the film industry for over 50 years. His involvement in the production allowed him the opportunity to buy props which had been purchased for the film. He bought the ’Blow Up’ watch immediately after the film finished and has owned it ever since.

’Blow Up’, a 1966 thriller directed by Michelangelo Antonioni is set in Sixties swinging London and follows fashion photographer Thomas, (David Hemmings) who goes on to unknowingly capture a death on film after following two lovers in a park. Vanessa Redgrave plays Jane, the elusive woman pictured in them.

The Rolex Reference 5513 Submariner heading to auction, is worn by Redgrave throughout the film and is seen on a leather strap as opposed to the traditional stainless-steel Oyster bracelet, and in many scenes, visibly worn over the sleeve of her shirt. At the time, it was unusual for a female to wear a men’s watch so prominently on screen, also highlighted with the next most famous men’s Rolex watch worn by Honor Blackman as Bond spy Pussy Galore. The ’Blow Up’ cult classic is being offered at auction for the first time and is accompanied by provenance letters.

Jonathan Darracott, Bonhams Global Head of Watches, said: “There is extensive interest in such an important and sought after Rolex with the provenance of being worn by a leading British star in a cult film. In one of the Rolex services sadly the original ’Explorer’ dial was replaced with the current baton and round marker version. Our Fine Watches auction is an opportunity to purchase an unforgettable timepiece with classic British Sixties cinematic history.”


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