Why James Bond Wears OMEGA Watches in Movies

By Patrick Fassler •  Updated: 09/05/22 •  5 min read

What We’ll Cover

If we step back to the original workings from Ian Fleming, it becomes clear Agent 007 should wear a Rolex. Most wouldn’t be surprised to learn Fleming was known to be a Rolex man, often wearing his 1016 Rolex Explorer. That is the watch we can assume Mr. 007 would sport on his wrist in the novels. However, throughout the years, Bond’s watches have evolved as much as his character. For over two decades, it’s been known that Bond wears an OMEGA.

why james bond wears omega instead of rolex
Source: 20th Century Fox

There’s debate in both the watch and Bond community as to which is the more authentic choice. As a fanatic of both watches and 007, I have wondered for quite some time why Bond wears an OMEGA instead of his classic Rolex from the original novels. The answer is a bit complex, though. Let’s take some time to dive into why modern 007 James Bond wears an OMEGA on his wrist.

The Story of Bond’s Wristwatches

Early Bond films featured our favorite double-0 with the iconic Submariner 6538 from Rolex. However, the origins of Bond feature very little about the actual watch itself. The watch itself never played an important part in the films until Roger Moore’s appearance in the 1973 film Live and Let Die. This was the first time we saw the watch become a gadget from Q-Branch with the Rolex Submariner 5513. This would become one of the most iconic Bond watches of all time.

After Live and Let Die, we see Bond go through several different watch brands. These include more Rolex to TAG Heuer and Seiko. While some of them are favorably remembered, none of them quite match up to what came in 1995.

Bond Wears OMEGA for the First Time

Photo from Danjaq LLC, MGM, United International Pictures

In 1995, we were introduced to a new era of Bond with Pierce Brosnan. In his first movie as Bond – Goldeneye – we see Bond sporting a quartz OMEGA Seamaster with a blue dial. Since then, we’ve seen that James Bond wears an OMEGA instead of the classic Rolex from Fleming novels. OMEGA has been with the 007 franchise now for the last 9 films, and the brand seems to have no interest in going anywhere.

Why Bond Wears OMEGA in Films

Dr. No (the first in the film series) was now over 30 years old. Times had changed, and it was time to give Agent 007 a new look. The challenge was maintaining the charm the world had grown to love. Costume Designer Lindy Hemming had the opportunity to re-think Bond, and the controversial choice was made to change his timepiece.

Hemming stated one of the problems with giving Bond another Rolex partly came down to brand image. The late 1900s saw a massive change in high-end watch brands, and Rolex was now marketed to a different demographic – the wealthy elite.

Authenticity of Bond’s OMEGA

The blue dial on 007’s OMEGA Seamaster in Goldeneye (ref. 254.80) was picked because Hemming believed it accurately matched what a Commander in the Royal Navy would wear. Add to that, huge marketing efforts were made to display that OMEGA was the brand used in the British Royal Navy. Thus, the Seamaster Professional 300M has become one of the most iconic watches on Bond’s wrist.

OMEGA’s Modern Bond

Over the last 27 years since Goldeneye, Bond has worn an OMEGA in every single film.

Tomorrow Never Dies – Seamaster Professional 300M (2531.80)

The World is Not Enough – Seamaster Professional 300M (2531.80)

Die Another Day – Seamaster Professional 300M (2531.80)

Casino Royale – Seamaster Professional 300M (222.80.00) & Planet Ocean (2900.50.91)

Quantum of Solace – Planet Ocean (2201.50.00)

Skyfall – Planet Ocean (232.30.42.21.01.001) & Aqua Terra (231.10.39.21.03.003)

Spectre – Seamaster Professional 300M (233.32.31.41.21.01.001) & Aqua Terra (231.10.42.221.03.001)

No Time to Die – Seamaster Diver 300M (210.90.42.20.01.001)

OMEGA’s James Bond Limited Edition Watches

OMEGA and 007 have become an iconic duo thanks to Hemming’s efforts to create a modern 00-agent. OMEGA’s brand has heavily benefited from the product placement and regularly releases Bond-edition watches.


Add to that, OMEGA’s parent company – Swatch Group – also creates special editions of Q-Branch-inspired watches. These are usually a fraction of the price of OMEGA’s offerings. While not too valuable, they do create an interesting piece of a 007 collection.

James Bond’s OMEGA Partnership

Source: OMEGA Watches

Bond wears an OMEGA because of Hemming’s efforts to create the most authentic modern 007. From OMEGA’s heritage with the British Royal Navy to the brand image at the time (and surely some product placement finance), the two brands have worked effortlessly together for over 20 years.

While purists on both sides still argue about whether Bond should wear an OMEGA instead of Rolex, it’s clear that the film franchise and OMEGA have greatly benefited from the partnership. With that, it’s unlikely we’ll see Agent 007 wear anything aside from an OMEGA for quite a while. Although, with a new age of 007 coming after No Time to Die, it’s hard to say for sure if we’ll continue to see OMEGA on the wrist of our favorite MI6 Spy Agent 007 James Bond.

Patrick Fassler

🚗 Unhealthy Car Obsession ⏱ Semi-Healthy Watch Obsession 📌 Daytona Beach, FL

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