AS THE WORLD WATCHES The silver screen gets an explosive injection of stardust when film and horology collide. By Charmaine Ho.
In case you haven’t already noticed, “corporate social responsibility” are three words that businesses mention constantly. It seems global brands are not only eager to let you know that they conduct themselves with the strictest legal and moral standards, they’ll also have you know that they’re on a mission to “give back” to society – be it in terms of conservation ecology, supporting the underprivileged, or contributing back to the arts. For Jaeger-LeCoultre, however, having just ust one cause is apparently not enough. Past years haveave seen the Swiss watch manufacture contributing to various humanitarian projects across the globe, includingncluding Hong Kong’s End Child Sexual Abuse Foundation ndation and Madrid’s Aladina Foundation for childrendren with cancer. Then, there’s the brand’s partnershipip with UNESCO, forged in 2008, which sees s it playing an important part in the protection of 47 marine sites on the UNESCO World Heritage list. As for its support of the arts, the brand has a clear affinity for one particular muse: Film.
Jaeger-LeCoultre has remained a staunch supporter of the Venice International Filmm Festival for the past decade, and it has taken ken several other notable film festivals under its s wings throughout the years; not least of all, the Shanghaihanghai International Film Festival, which has enjoyedd JaegerLeCoultre’s patronage since 2011. It’s a responsibility ponsibility that the brand takes very seriously. As thee festival’s official partner, Jaeger-LeCoultre hosts the annual gala dinner and auction to kick off the festivities, while raising funds for the project to restore China’s classic films – an admirable project that seeks to preserve the history and heritage of Chinese cinema through the restoration of classic Chinese films.
To date, 12 films, including Tears of the Yang-Tse (1947), Crossroads (1937), and Two Stage Sisters (1964), have been restored, with Tung-Shing Yee’s award-winning C’est la vie, mon chéri (1993) making the list this year.
“We are not a part of film festivals to be present on the red carpet; that’s not the value of the brand,” says JaegerLeCoultre CEO Daniel Riedo as we speak with him at the Shanghai International Film Festival. “[We are here] to express our artistic vision of the future and the restoration of classic films is a perfect match to our DNA. It’s a connection that extends beyond film festivals and we do it all the time.”
It would be easy to dismiss Riedo’s words as mere rhetoric if it wasn’t for the brand’s extensive connections to the global film industry, but like a tree that has planted its roots firmly into the ground, Jaeger-LeCoultre’s contributions to the world of film have grown into a steadfast pillar of support, bearing fruit in several areas of the industry. From the nurturing of young talents, to the hon honorary acknowledgements of contributions made by legends, JaegerLeC LeCoultre’s commitment to the cause is the stuff that movies are made of.
Clockwise from top left: Movie stills from restored classic Chinese films – Crossroads (1937), C’est la vie, mon chéri (1993), Crows and Sparrows
Tears of the Yang-Tse (1947), and Eight Thousand Li of Cloud and Moon (1947) Rendez-Vous Ivy Secret watch, Jaeger- LeCoultre