In the world of high entertainment and high entitlement, it seems natural that cinema should play a role in the latest Cartier film. The illustrious, storied Parisian jeweller was the first retailer ever to have one of its products shown in a Hollywood film. That was 1927, and Rudolph Valentino in The Son of the Sheik, when our adventurous, sultry, matinee idol and romantic hero par excellence valiantly opens the luxurious flap of his desert tent to reveal a Cartier Tank watch on his wrist. Product placement in a desert. How stealthy was that? It was four years later that Samuel Goldwyn invited Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel to Hollywood to design couture for his leading lady Gloria Swanson in Tonight or Never.
And 100 years later, almost as if in reverence to the medium of film, today’s iteration sees director Sofia Coppola work with her star Courtney Eaton, the Australian beauty setting a fiery pace to become Hollywood’s next it girl.This time the wrist-candy is a Panthère de Cartier, a timepiece first launched in 1983. In keeping with how our lifestyles have changed, and how travel and our experiences have evolved since the heady days of Valentino, today’s Cartier woman, is the fashion-y, feline-y, Panthèresque embodiment of contemporary privilege and good taste.
Today, the Cartier woman gets her kicks in the fantasyland of Los Angeles and the narratives that turn on the city’s mythologies. From hepcat to tech-cat, this feline, this be-leisured urban purr-sonification of contemporary womanhood, parties and pools and pants her way across the cityscape. She is stripped to the barest of all necessities, reliant on her passion and the chronological catwalker on her wrist.
For as long as she has been at the top of her game, Coppola has stood out as an icon of style, taste and contemporary elegance. As a precise writer and a determined artist whose work transcends trends, she gives sensitive expression to what femininity is today. While men do sometimes play roles central to the narrative of her films, Stephen Dorff in Somewhere or Bill Murray in Lost in Translation, for example, her leading characters are almost exclusively women.
The female perspective is an element particularly relevant to Coppola, a point of view she conveys, time and again, on screen. With an abundance of talent and a distinctive artistic vision, she knows, better than anyone, how to reinvent the past with a rigorously contemporary touch. Her vision of the 1980s and of what it means to be a Panthère woman today is the perfect match for this collection, for this gem of a watch, which slinks onto the skin in a rippling celebration of triumphant and carefree femininity. Exuberant, unforgettable, sensual and intuitive, she, and her panther, are all that and more.