Since “Crazy Rich Asians” tells the story of, well, the crazy rich, it’s only fitting to see incredibly rare and ridiculously expensive items in the film, like the super rare Rolex watch that director Jon M. Chu flew in just to be included for a brief scene.
In May 2017, Kevin Kwan, author of the novel series of the same title, decided that the movie needed a really expensive watch, so at the time, he emailed Eric Wind, a watch specialist at the British auction house Christie’s, according to Galerie Magazine.
In his message to Wind, the author specifically asked for a watch “that would impress even watch collectors.” The downside of this, though, was that he only had 48 hours to deliver a wristwatch that could really catch the attention of aficionados.
After searching through his contacts and calling avid collectors, Wind managed to get a hold of Eric Ku, a vintage Rolex dealer from Singapore and the owner of the watch shown in “Crazy Rich Asians,” Bangkok Singapore reported.
Happy to play a (very) small part in the movie Crazy Rich Asians. Your eyes were not playing tricks on you, and you really saw this watch in one of the scenes. Wishing much deserved success to those involved especially @kevinkwanbooks for his wonderfully written novel. (oh and for those asking, it’s a Mk 1.5 Oyster Newman 6263)
The watch model that Wind managed to get was the MK1.5 Oyster Newman (Reference 6263), a different variant of the original Rolex Daytona owned by movie legend Paul Newman, which is considered the “Holy Grail” of watches by many avid collectors and was brought at a record high of $17.8 million.
Ku reportedly acquired the watch for the price of $700,000. While the price of it fails in comparison to the original, it is still widely regarded as “expensive and desirable” among the other names in this model range, says Wind.
In the film, the watch was used as a gift given by Astrid Leong (Gemma Chan) to her husband Michael Teo (Pierre Png) in a one-second film, a soldier who turned into a tech-start-up CEO.
“Crazy Rich Asians,” which premiered in U.S. theaters on August 15, is now the the “most successful studio rom-com (romantic-comedy)” in almost a decade.