Last year, Rolex, to celebrate its involvement with the Oscars, debuted a film that featured scenes from films with watches on the wrists of the characters. It was an amazing recap of the films featuring Rolex timepieces, often chosen by the filmmakers or, at times, belonging to the actors themselves.

The scenes were from some of the greatest films of all time, including The Color of Money, Network, Marathon Man, Titanic, The Deep, The Usual Suspects, Apocalypse Now and many more.

This year, Rolex decided to flex is muscles again with four of its filmmaking Testimonees – Kathryn Bigelow, James Cameron, Alejandro G. Iñárritu and Martin Scorsese – talking about the impact of film, story and character.

“If the purpose of art is to agitate for change then film should expose us to something we don’t already know,” Bigelow said. Bigelow was “extremely humbled and honored to be in the company of such extraordinary and enduring talents” while making this Rolex short film.

Rolex testimonee, American director, producer, and writer, Kathryn Bigelow
Rolex testimonee, American director, producer, and writer, Kathryn Bigelow

“Great movies are made in details, and not just a few details – every detail. Every character, every prop and every sequence,” Cameron said. “A Rolex is not only a beautiful watch and a masterpiece of engineering, it’s very tough. It’s a watch that you can take into any environment and which can stand up to the pressure. So, what you’re saying subliminally to the audience is: that character can take the pressure, too; he or she has what it takes.”

On being included with the other directors, Cameron said, “All four of us have very different styles and we’re interested in very different types of subjects, but what we have in common is a devotion to excellence, from a unique and visionary perspective on the world.”

Rolex testimonee, Canadian filmmaker, philanthropist, and deep-sea explorer, James Cameron
Rolex testimonee, Canadian filmmaker, philanthropist, and deep-sea explorer, James Cameron

Alejandro G. Iñárritu was a film mentor in the 2014–2015 Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative, where he took his protégé on the set of The Revenant. “Our life is multidimensional, but time is linear we cannot escape that,” he said. “Cinema is a two-dimensional reality within a frame, but time and space are fragmented which is why it’s so liberating and addictive.”

Rolex testimonee, Mexican film director, producer and screenwriter, Alejandro G. Iñárritu
Rolex testimonee, Mexican film director, producer and screenwriter, Alejandro G. Iñárritu

Martin Scorsese was also a mentor for the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative in 2008, and he is very aware of the impact film can have on young people. “If it moves a young person, if it instills that kind of excitement and inspiration, I like that very much. I like to see what they do if they’re inspired by something I’ve done. Film really tells us who we are. Tells us about ourselves. There’s a reflection of the society that we were at the time, our philosophy of life.”

Rolex testimonee, American director, producer, screenwriter, and film historian, Martin Scorsese
Rolex testimonee, American director, producer, screenwriter, and film historian, Martin Scorsese

These four Rolex Testimonees are all Oscar winners and between them their films have won 57 Academy Awards.

Rolex has always worked with the best of the best in whatever field in which the brand is involved. Great examples are Arnold Palmer in golf, Roger Federer in tennis and Jackie Stewart in auto racing. “Rolex supports inspiring individuals and organizations who achieve great heights in both the sporting world and the arts. The Academy and the four exceptional Rolex Testimonees in cinema – Kathryn Bigelow, James Cameron, Alejandro G. Iñárritu and Martin Scorsese – exemplify a determination to reach unimaginable goals. They share with Rolex the understanding of the importance of time and making a mark on the world through excellence in storytelling,” said Arnaud Boetsch, Rolex Director of Communication & Image.

Whatever Rolex does, it does with elegance and class. The Oscars are one more example of this.