I can’t tell you, it’s a secret. All I can say is that it involved red wine. French, of course. You can’t beat a good Saint-Emilion! My wife is crazy about French gastronomy and French culture. If she could, she’d be smuggling Bordeaux big time! [laughs]. And I know what I’m talking about. Once, we tried to sneak apple pies across the border from Canada. I’m a terrible liar, so when the guard asked if we had anything to declare, it was obvious that we did. Anyway, it turned out he was a huge fan of Just Friends, a movie I made in 2005. During the credits, you see my character singing I Swear by All-4-One. He thought it was the funniest thing he’d ever seen and, sensing we had something to hide, demanded I sing it for him. I really didn’t have a choice!
For evenings, I’m more of a classic dresser. You’ll never see me rock up in shorts and cowboy boots. Every time I slip into a tux I feel like a male version of Cinderella going to the ball.
Let’s be honest, where accessories are concerned, men don’t have that many options. It’s going to be a wedding ring, maybe a class ring, and a watch that lets them show off their personality, stand out from the crowd. When I was younger and broke, buying a watch was a big deal so I wanted to be sure to get the right one. A watch has to be tough enough to play sport with but it also has to be dressy enough not to look out of place at a black-tie dinner. Something that will blend in everywhere without being bland. A watch says who you are on the inside. It reveals your personality, your qualities. It’s also a way to show you have good taste and are able to appreciate craftsmanship. Never forget that the watch on your wrist represents a centuries-old art, meticulous skill and extraordinary passion.
I’m full of admiration for watches. Why? Because a watch is always exposed. Unless you keep your hands in your pockets all day, it’s always at risk of taking a knock or getting scratched. That’s one of the reasons I like stainless steel bracelets and cases. I don’t want to have to hold my breath every time I move. A watch has to suit your lifestyle, not the opposite. Then again, there’s a certain charm to a watch that shows some wear and tear. It’s a reminder that we’re not invincible.
I'm convinced there comes a time in your life when you have to own at least one good watch.
I’m not really into high-tech devices. You know, watches that flash a message when you haven’t burned enough calories or vibrate whenever you get a call or an email. I don’t expect my watch to multi-task. There’s always that pressure to add more technology, but what’s more frustrating than a watch that’s obsolete the minute you put it on? In my mind, nothing will ever replace a traditional watch. Another really annoying thing about smartwatches is that you have to keep charging them. You’ll never have that problem with a mechanical watch. Every time I wind a watch, I feel I’m breathing life into it. Like I have some kind of special power. It may seem old-fashioned, but I’m convinced there comes a time in your life when you have to own at least one good watch. Even if you’re not that into watches.
First of all, because it proves you want things that are beautifully made and beautiful to look at, too. Sure, it costs money but it’s also an investment and shows you want to pass something on to your loved ones. I know I’ll pass on my Piaget Polo S to my daughter, James. Her initials are already engraved on the back of the case. She loves tapping on it. It’s like she knows it will be hers one day.
Yes, in fact it was the Piaget Polo. It was in a 1987 movie, Planes, Trains and Automobiles. There’s a scene where Steve Martin trades his watch for a motel room. I was a kid, I had no idea that one day I’d be an ambassador for Piaget. There’s also the watch I inherited from my grandfather. It dates from the Second World War so it’s been through a lot.