Have you ever heard of the so-called black- and grey-striped James Bond NATO strap? How about the story that it was first seen on James Bond in the 1964 movie Goldfinger?
Now, before calling the nylon strap that comes with the Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” Limited Edition the “James Bond NATO strap” and referencing the nylon strap the British spy wore with his Rolex Submariner Reference 6538 (without crown guards) in Goldfinger (1964), do note that original NATO straps for wristwatches were only created in the 1970s by Britain’s Ministry of Defence [Reference: TimeWerke Magazine Vol. XI, pages 267 to 274.]
Moreover, as highlighted on Jake’s Rolex World, Goldfinger was filmed before NATO straps were invented. He even points out that the James Bond in Goldfinger, played by Sean Connery, was wearing a nylon diving strap as opposed to the NATO strap.
This nylon diving strap was in three colours: dark navy blue, dark olive and fine burgundy. It has nine stripes and were in this sequence: navy blue, olive, burgundy, olive, navy blue, olive, burgundy, olive and navy blue.
In other words, the use of a NATO strap and even a two-colour grey and black strap with five stripes by James Bond in Goldfinger is a myth.
The strap’s width (seen on Sean Connery) is 16mm and it is obviously undersized for the 20mm lug width. Jake’s best guess is that the movie producers could not obtain a nylon strap in 20mm for the unusually large Rolex back then, adding that the nylon strap had to be used because Bond was wearing it over his diving suit in the movie’s opening sequences.
Jake categorically stated that James Bond never wore a NATO strap in the movies. Well, perhaps until the 2015 movie Spectre came along.
Do note that Jake’s article is dated 17 December 2011, four years before the release of Spectre so an update should already have been done or is most likely in the works.
In the movie Spectre, Bond is officially given the Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” watch by Q (the “Quartermaster” played by Ben Whishaw). Here is the dialogue between them in the movie after Q hands the watch to Bond:
James Bond (holding the Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” in his right hand): Does it do anything?
Q (answering in a deadpan tone): It tells the time.
Well, only in the movie, the Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” is also a gadget for the intrepid Bond. Q informs Bond that the watch also has an “alarm” and it is best to watch the movie to discover what he meant.
Directed by Sam Mendes, the reported production budget for Spectre is US$300 million. James Bond, played by Daniel Craig, takes his Seamaster 300 “Spectre” Limited Edition through loads of explosive action, literally.
The Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” is secured to his wrist by the five-striped black and grey NATO strap. As of 26 October 2015, the day Spectre premiered in London, it will be correct to term this the original “James Bond NATO strap”.
The once myth has therefore become reality, or perhaps it is better to say “reel-ity”, thanks to Omega.
Other articles on timewerke.com that may be of interest:
i. Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra “James Bond”: Bond Breaker
ii. Omega Seamaster 300 “Spectre” Limited Edition: Writing’s on the Wall