The Swiss luxury watch brand has announced a world-first – a Hollywood action-comedy The Chase for Carrera in order to commemorate 60 years of the iconic TAG Heuer Carrera timepiece. Starring brand ambassador Ryan Gosling, the short film salutes the Carrera’s storied racing heritage in a no-holds-barred chase thriller that encapsulates the TAG Heuer motto, “Don’t crack under pressure” – and deserves to be watched with the lights out and popcorn at hand.
To celebrate 60 years of the iconic TAG Heuer Carrera the Swiss luxury watch brand have done something just as daring and maverick as the watch’s design: launching a Hollywood action-comedy.
Starring TAG Heuer brand ambassador Ryan Gosling (Drive, The Gray Man) and Vanessa Bayer (I Love That For You, Saturday Night Live), the offbeat chase thriller sees Gosling on the run from Bayer’s Prop Master as she attempts to take his beloved TAG Heuer Carrera off his wrist – something he doesn’t plan on letting her do.
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Produced by David Leitch’s 87 North – responsible for some of the most iconic action films of the last decade, from John Wick to Deadpool 2 to last year’s Bullet Train – and directed by Nash Edgerton (Mr Inbetween), Gosling shot The Chase for Carrera while working with Leitch on feature The Fall Guy in Australia. Both Gosling and Leitch contributed to The Chase for Carrera’s creative and the result is pure box-office.
The film sees Gosling and Bayer battle it out in high-octane style, as everything from iconic sports cars to heavy-duty trucks to electric production buggies are raced through various movie sets in a spectacle of blockbuster proportions. In a knowing nod to its film-within-a-film set-up, Leitch plays himself as the on-screen director.
It’s a fitting celebration of an iconic timepiece that was born of the racetrack when it was first created in 1963 by TAG Heuer’s legendary former CEO Jack Heuer.
Named after the notoriously dangerous Carrera Panamericana race, it was designed with readability and simplicity in mind, vital for drivers navigating high-speed bends. The result was an icon – elegant and uncluttered, sporty and daring – that spoke to Heuer’s love of mid-century design yet remains timeless six decades on.
What better way, then, to celebrate its 60th year than with a world-first action extravaganza that few would even think possible? The film even comes with its own Hollywood posters and timeless taglines. “How bad does he want that watch?” reads one. Answer: badly.
Yet it’s not just the special effects that make the film so spectacular. Gosling first worked with Bayer when he hosted US comedy institution Saturday Night Live in 2015 and the two found they had an instant comic connection. The duo’s duel is as hilarious as it is dramatic, with both actors improvising many of the film’s best lines.
“Prop Master?” Gosling asks her when they come face-to-face. “How did you get that? Did you get a bachelor’s first and work your way up to the masters?”
Just as the word “Carrera” itself doesn’t have a single meaning – along with “race”, it can also be translated as “career” or simply “path”, the perfect name not just for the daring, but simply for those with independent spirits – so the film, too, contains multitudes.
Not only does it manage to be many movies in one – going from adrenaline-fueled chase film to slapstick comedy to mob drama to Western parody and back again – this mini blockbuster contains a range of easter eggs, each one a nod to the Carrera’s illustrious past.
It opens in an art-deco hotel corridor as Gosling finds himself chased by sword-wielding gangsters. But the first person we see is an old lady about to enter one of the doors.
Eagle-eyed fans of racing history will notice that she is dressed in the distinctive white sunglasses of the legendary Jacqueline Evans de López, the British-born Mexican TV and film actress who was not only the first woman to compete in the infamous Panamericana race, but did so five years in a row, between 1950-1954, in her own Porsche.
She was truly a trailblazer that embodies the spirit of the TAG Heuer Carrera: someone, like the Carrera itself, who refused to go with the status quo.
There are five other hints and homages to the TAG Heuer Carrera’s rich history, including significant names, notable numbers, and a glimpse of another iconic figure. See how many you can spot.
It may be a Prop Master in the film who is desperately attempting to get the Carrera back, but in truth TAG Heuer’s most iconic chronograph is anything but a prop: it is the film’s headline star… along with TAG Heuer’s brand ambassador, of course.
“Okay, now tilt the watch to the light!” shouts Leitch, playing the director, at one point.
The iteration of the Carrera that Gosling is desperate to keep hold of is the new TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph. Topped with a “glassbox”, a sapphire crystal dome that flows seamlessly over the tachymeter scale that runs around the dial edge and into the case, it comes in a stunning signature blue dial on a blue calfskin leather strap. An icon never looked so modern – and no wonder Gosling is not about to give it up easily. This is one timepiece worth putting your foot down for – literally. Bayer’s Prop Master, meanwhile, is wearing the new TAG Heuer Carrera 36mm in pink.
It won’t be a one off for that iconic double-act – Gosling and his Carrera – as they will also be seen co-starring in director Leitch’s next major feature, The Fall Guy. While the TAG Heuer brand ambassador can be seen wearing the TAG Heuer Carrera Chronograph with signature blue dial here, in The Fall Guy, Gosling will be wearing the sportier black and silver “reverse panda” dial of the same edition.
It represents a world-first for a luxury brand, as Gosling will continue to wear different iterations of TAG Heuer Carreras in multiple iconic Hollywood roles. Last year, the actor could be seen wearing the minimalist TAG Heuer Carrera Three Hands as the unflappable Agent Six in the Netflix spy thriller The Gray Man. Proof, as if proof were needed, the Carrera is truly a global icon in its own right.
Frédéric Arnault:“TAG Heuer has always had a close connection to Hollywood, with our timepieces worn on the wrists of silver screen legends across the decades, from Steve McQueen to our very own Ryan Gosling. And the Carrera has always been more than just a timepiece – born from the racetrack, it’s a statement of daring and adventure as much as it is the epitome of elegance. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate its 60 years that than with this world-first: a mini Hollywood blockbuster collaborating with the best action-movie director in the world in David Leitch, responsible for such instant classics as John Wick and Bullet Train, and starring Ryan Gosling, not only the A-list icon of his age, but someone who always brings the utmost dedication and creativity to every project he embarks on, and that couldn’t be more true here. Here’s to the next 60.”
Ryan Gosling:“I think what impressed me most was just how fearless and creatively versatile the team at TAG Heuer is. This campaign is wildly different from not only everything we’ve done together, but I think, anything they’ve ever done before. I was working with David Leitch on The Fall Guy and was enjoying it so much I asked him while we were filming an action scene if he would be interested in collaborating on my new campaign with the brand. Since the film was about making a film, we thought it made sense that the commercial be about making a commercial. And they [TAG Heuer] did it with such ease and joy, it made the experience a fun and creative experience for everyone involved. It was surprising to see a luxury brand known for such serious and artful campaigns, suddenly embrace and showcase such a strong sense of humour.”
David Leitch:“Beyond being one of the most brilliant actors of his generation, Ryan was a thousand percent committed to bringing his best performance for this film. And really leaning in and like saying, okay, let’s make these bold choices together. It was really the same process as shooting a feature – the team prepped it like a mini action movie. It was always: how can we be creative? How can we be funny? How can we make a golf cart feel energetic and fun and dangerous? And I think with Nash Edgerton directing, who has exceptional knowledge of how to shoot action, and Ryan contributing to the creative, we did that.”