GQ (Australia) - - WATCH -

Chris Hemsworth isn’t of­ten up­staged. Not these days. But here, un­der a Syd­ney sky clut­tered by cloud, that in­verted script is play­ing out. Of course, Hemsworth is the rea­son the city’s slick­est types – book­ended by a few blog­gers and for­mer re­al­ity TV stars – have scram­bled to a top cor­ner of the city’s Royal Botanic Gar­dens, to a patch of grass over­look­ing the Opera House and a hec­tic Cir­cu­lar Quay groan­ing un­der the hour of knock off. But it’s a portly, bald Swiss chap with oc­ca­sion­ally-man­gled English who’s hold­ing court – over­shad­ow­ing the good-look­ing, home­grown Hol­ly­wood hulk to his left and en­chant­ing the crowd with his in­sight and en­thu­si­asm. That’s the thing about TAG Heuer CEO Jean-claude Biver – not only is he widely thought of as one of the watch in­dus­try’s true cap­tains, a saviour in the eyes of many a me­chan­i­cal fan­boy, he’s in­fec­tious. And ever funny. On later talk­ing to Hemsworth about join­ing the TAG fam­ily – this his un­veil­ing party, af­ter all – the la­conic ac­tor outs Biver as a cen­tral force in the brand se­cur­ing his sig­na­ture. So too, he adds, his ap­pre­ci­a­tion for a la­bel that’s long been as­so­ci­ated with sports he keeps an eye on – es­pe­cially af­ter his taste of For­mula 1 in Rush, bril­liantly play­ing Bri­tish driver James Hunt. “Over the last few years there’s been a lot of op­por­tu­ni­ties with var­i­ous things,” Hemsworth tells GQ. “But this is the first brand that I was truly a fan of and that I truly loved – you know, for years the iconic images of Steven Mc­queen and the as­so­ci­a­tion with F1 and Niki Lauda hav­ing the TAG Heuer logo on the front of his car when we were shoot­ing. And this model [the ‘Heuer 01’], which is what today’s launch is about – I love it for its in­tri­cate de­tail and be­cause it also has a tac­ti­cal, sporty vibe too; you can dress it up and there’s a func­tion­al­ity and that all suits my life­style.” Ul­ti­mately, the TAG al­liance con­firms Hemsworth’s sta­tus – his name on an am­bas­sado­rial lin­eage in­clu­sive of Leonardo Dicaprio and Brad Pitt, which also sees him along­side a cur­rent sta­ble that in­cludes Cris­tiano Ron­aldo and Cara Delev­ingne. “We choose am­bas­sadors ac­cord­ing to our four com­mu­ni­ca­tion plat­forms – sport, art, life­style and Swiss­ness,” says Biver. “Chris is loyal to the brand and the per­fect com­bi­na­tion – great man, great fa­ther, a suc­cess­ful ac­tor and Aus­tralian, which is an im­por­tant mar­ket for us.” For Hemsworth, the key is the coun­try. Af­ter years State­side, the 32-year-old’s glee­fully re­in­stalled as a lo­cal – liv­ing the dream that is a sprawl­ing beach­side prop­erty in north­ern NSW. It means days spent en famille and in the surf. Though, pre­sum­ably, the lo­cals don’t drop in. “Mate, they make a point of drop­ping in on me… I surf a lot at Len­nox Point, and I’ve got to know the guys there, I’ve done my time now so they let me get a few waves. But be­ing back home – to be on the beach with my wife and kids, and have some prop­erty and not be shoul­der-to-shoul­der with neigh­bours, yeah, it’s the dream.”


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