Franck Muller’s classic relaunch.
It’s been nearly 80 years since the Oscar-winning Hollywood classic “Casablanca” premiered, but it’s safe to say it’s still one of the must-sees for anyone interested in cinema. Even those who were born long after Casablanca stopped showing will no doubt have seen clips of the film, or at least heard of its name. One of the people who was deeply moved by Casablanca was the brand’s namesake founder, Frank Muller.
Set during World War II, Casablanca tells the romance between Rick Bryan and Ilsa Lund that spans two love cities: Paris and Casablanca. Whether it’s the chemistry between actors Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, or the beautiful lines and theme song, the film has become a cult classic, considered one of the most beloved Warner Bros. One of the most popular movies.
In fact, Franck Muller, who saw the film for the first time as a young gentleman, was so fascinated by it that he was immediately inspired to create a classic three-handed model in 1998, Inspiration Many nuances from the movie. The original watch, named The Cintrée Curvex Casablanca, combined elegance and sportiness. The dial’s printed hour-markers are combined with diamond-shaped hands, and the hand-stitched calfskin strap is combined with a polished tonneau-shaped case for advanced style. It is worth mentioning that this watch was one of the first in the industry at the time to apply luminous light to its numbers in such a bold way.
Now, 8 years after the movie and 25 years after the first Franck Muller Casablanca watch, there is a new reinterpretation of this classic watch – the Franck Muller Vanguard Casablanca. As you’ve already deduced from its name, this watch takes the spirit of the original and modernized it for a contemporary audience. Essentially, it takes 20th-century nostalgia and upgrades it with 21st-century sensibilities.
The first, perhaps not-so-obvious change is the case. The Vanguard Casablanca retains the Tonneau shape of the Cintree Curvex case that has become the hallmark of the Franck Muller brand, but reimagines the dynamism of the Vanguard collection. The brand has created a new V 43 case for this 42.5mm wide watch in the Vanguard collection, a size that has long been requested by enthusiasts in the region and unique to Southeast Asia. This gives the watch a strong presence on the wrist without becoming overly noticeable, maintaining the original’s combination of sophistication and sportiness.
Vanguard Casablanca’s leather strap with rubber inlays is perfect for those who wear it in warm climates. Featured here is the salmon dial reference.
C3 Super-LumiNova is the brightest of the other luminescent material variants.
The digital design of the Vanguard Casablanca has also been updated. The Art Deco-inspired numerals are designed to be both straight and arched, with oversized hour markers added for increased legibility. Just as luminous was an essential part of the original, the new version is equipped with C3 Super-LumiNova – a non-aging, ultra-bright luminous applied to the hands and indexes. Additionally, the designer added a compass to the watch’s inner bezel to keep in line with the film’s ubiquitous travel element.
Beneath its exterior, the watch is also equipped with the modern luxury Franck Muller movement MVT FM 800-DT, whose level of finishing has become synonymous with the brand. This includes the Côtes de Genève pattern, the circular graining, the brushed sunburst and the chamfering of many parts of the movement.
Franck Muller Vanguard Casablanca comes in four colorways, inspired by movies and the city itself, including black, brown and salmon. A fourth option with a black dial and blue numerals is available at Franck Muller boutiques in the region. The collection is also available with a choice of three-hand or chronograph movements. Garrik Low, managing director of Franck Muller, commented: “We have developed a completely new case size with the brand’s unique style and code, which our collectors have long desired.”
The wallet-friendly price tag of the Franck Muller Vanguard Casablanca makes it a very attractive option, not only for new or young watch collectors, but also a great entry point into the world of Franck Muller. After all, this watch was born in the mind of the founder himself, inspired by one of the greatest films of all time. If anything, it’s worth adding it to your collection so you can open the Popular watch case and “watch you here, kid.”