A quartet of watches owned by action star Sylvester Stallone, including the Panerai Luminor model worn in the 1996 film Daylight, will join what is now emerging as an all-star cast at the Phillips’s flagship “Racing Pulse” auction in New York. Among other notable timepieces the auction will be a Heuer Monaco worn by Steve McQueen in the 1970 classic Le Mans and Paul Newman’s personal Rolex Daytona Ref. 6263.
Stallone’s Luminor PAM5218-201/a has a special place in the history of the Italian brand, which started off as a firm making precision instruments and diver’s watches for the Italian Navy’s frogmen in the 1940s. Panerai did not make watches for the civilian market initially. However, in 1993 the company produced a collection of vintage-inspired limited editions that paid homage to its early models. The PAM 5218-201/a sported the “Pre-Vendôme logo” (watches made between 1993 and 1997, before Panerai was sold to the Vendôme group, now Richemont, are referred to as “Pre-Vendôme) and it is believed that only 677 examples of this model exist. Back in the 1990s, Panerai was a relatively unknown watchmaker and these models would have gone unnoticed had it not been for Stallone.
The American actor reportedly discovered the brand during a visit to Italy and wore the chunky PAM 5218-201/a on his wrist throughout the filming of Daylight. Stallone’s association with the brand going forward (he would go on to custom-order a bunch of Panerai watches that carried the moniker “Slytech” on the dial) would catapult the brand to worldwide fame.
Stallone’s PAM5218-201/a, consigned by the man himself, is reportedly “remarkably well preserved, and fitted on its original sharkskin strap with original Panerai Pre-Vendôme buckle.” Stallone wore the watch throughout the filming process and even stated that it “went through hell in every scene.” It will be sold with its original box, two additional Panerai Pre-Vendôme straps with buckles, and its original brass screwdriver. A handwritten and signed note from Stallone and an original 1996 studio-issued lobby card from Daylight, also signed by Stallone, with a specific reference to the actual watch. This Panerai has a pre-sale estimate of $40,000 – 80,000.
Stallone has consigned five watches in total from his collection; In addition to the Luminor “Daylight” model, these include four Richard Mille watches, including the model worn by the actor in The Expendables 3 and one of the most complicated Richard Mille models ever made, the RM 25-01, which was inspired by Stallone’s iconic movie character, John Rambo. The “Racing Pulse” auction by Phillips in Association with Bacs & Russo will be held in New York on December 12.
A version of this article first appeared on our sister website, WatchTime Middle East.