Categories: Watches

The Star-Studded Return of Cartier’s Tank Française

The 2023 edition of the iconic watch was unveiled in a campaign featuring cinematic legends Catherine Deneuve and Rami Malek.

The History of the Cartier Tank

The Cartier Tank is one of the most well-known timepieces crafted by the Maison. The design of the first edition in 1917 came from the mind of Louis Cartier, the grandson of founder Louis-François Cartier, who drew inspiration from the Art Deco scene and battle tanks used in World War I. As the years went on, the Maison designed a family of Cartier Tank watches, each distinguishable by their trademark Roman numbers and geometric shapes.

The Tank Française

Originally launched in 1996, the Tank Française arrived and shot to fame because of its androgynous and timeless appeal. It featured a metal bracelet and case that added to its French je ne sais quoi, while its sleek and rectangular shape helped cement an aesthetic that would stand the test of time. It’s no surprise as to why this design attracts a wide range of admirers, from first timers to seasoned collectors.

A Modern Twist

Reintroducing Tank Française to a new generation comes with a little tinkering. To solidify its legendary status, Cartier carries this out by including a brand-new monobloc metal design which checks the boxes for both aesthetic and ergonomic purposes. The bracelet forms a compact, perfectly flexible chain, a dense mesh of links that remain and move as one.

The new edition comes in steel and yellow gold, along with optional decorative diamonds. It features mainly satin finishes, and the sunray watch dial with Roman numerals is highlighted by the shine of its relief.

As Marie-Laure Cérède, Cartier’s Creative Director of Jewellery and Watchmaking puts it: “The new Tank Française reflects a creative conviction. Like rediscovering the raw nature of a cut stone, it was about capturing the watch’s radical shape, simplifying its essential lines, and stripping them of all embellishment to return to the myth’s origin.”

About the Campaign

As an open love letter to Paris, a city bursting with artistic and cultural expression, the Tank Française campaign borrows the lens of late 1950s French New Wave Cinema to capture a charming tale of chance.

Directed by subversive English filmmaker, Guy Ritchie, the film is set against the backdrop of Alexandre III bridge where the main protagonist playfully crossed its paths over the decades. According to filming statistics, Rami Malek took 18,261 steps in total across the bridge.

Malek, famed for his Academy Award-winning performance as Freddie Mercury in the film Bohemian Rhapsody (2018), stars as a multi-faceted artist. He is joined onscreen by French cinema darling, Catherine Deneuve who is known for titular roles in Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964), Indochine (1992) and Place Vendôme (1998).

Speaking about his collaboration with Cartier, Malek told SCMP “It’s not only a luxury to wear but also to be associated with the brand, something elegant, timeless and cherished like the Tank watch.”

For more information on Cartier’s Tank Française, click here

Sarisa Pokawattana

When Sarisa isn’t buried neck deep in existential crisis, she’s usually restraining herself from going on another vintage shopping spree and fully indulging in her grandma activities. This includes repeating her rotation of comfort sitcoms, crocheting, and reading slightly pretentious novels.

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