Tom Holland is one of Hollywood’s most knowledgeable 1:1 UK replica watches fans and now the Marvel superhero he plays is getting in on the horological action – kind of. Audemars Piguet and Spider-Man have spun a web together to create what is the second AP x Marvel masterpiece in a hype-worthy collaboration, following in the footsteps of 2021’s Black Panther AP.
The 42mm titanium and black ceramic fake watches for sale is, as per the first AP x Marvel Black Panther, limited to 250 pieces, and there’s also the one-of-a-kind Black Suit Spider-Man that sold for $6.2m tonight at a private event in Dubai.
But who do we have to thank for these two icons colliding? Not Holland, but another actor in the Marvel Universe: Don Cheadle.
Dating as far back as 2003, Audemars Piguet CEO François-Henry Bennahmias has had desires to work with Marvel in some capacity but to no avail. Attempts were made in vain to have characters in Marvel movies wear best Swiss Audemars Piguet replica watches. But no dice. Then, in 2010, when the Swiss watchmaker was sponsoring the Tony Awards, the ever-charismatic Bennahmias baited Cheadle on the red carpet for wearing – god forbid – a Patek Philippe.
“I joked to him, ‘One day you’re going to grow up, and understand that it’s time to wear the right watch.’ He turned around and said, ‘What watch?’ ‘AP,’ I said,” laughs Bennahmias. They became friends, kept in touch then, years later in 2017, by total coincidence, met up in Paris. “We were chatting and I was telling him that my biggest regret was not doing a deal with Marvel. I tell him the story and Don was like, ‘I didn’t know this story, why didn’t you ever share that with me?’ So right there he gets up and calls [president of Marvel Studios] Kevin Feige. He said, ‘Hey, I’m with my friend, François from cheap Audemars Piguet copy watches. He would love to do something but apparently, you guys don’t love him?’ He said, ‘Could you make something happen?’”
Three weeks later, in Los Angeles, Cheadle goes along with Bennahmias to the meeting. They enter the room in Marvel Studios with six characters already planned, and the lawyer in charge of all the deals turned out to be French.
“It couldn’t have been better for this reason. Don reopened the door for us, but it’s such a perfectly organised crime, in the sense that Marvel knows years in advance which movie they’re going to come out with so we were able to work around that.”
What makes this Audemars Piguet x Spider-Man special?
Spider-Man on a watch dial is not a new thing. Indeed, you can pick up a Spider-Man Swatch Flik Flak for under £100, but this AP version isn’t just a printed character on the dial. “No matter what we do, and as fun as it could be, we’re always going to make extra efforts to make our luxury replica watches true to who we are and what we stand for as far as craftsmanship goes mixed with the finest materials and complexity,” Bennahmias says.
Spidey, appearing in three-dimensional form as if suspended in the void through the sapphire crystal, is made of white gold which has been laser, hand, and all kinds of engraved to look this good. The matt red and metallic blue offer shadows and contrasts to give the illusion of Andrew Garfield/Tom Holland/Tobey Maguire (delete as appropriate) features.
It took just over two days’ work to whip up these white gold figurines alone, and in total the Spider-Man pieces took twice as much time to make as the Black Panthers. That’s largely down to the fact that a skeletonised movement was used to create the suspended Spidey effect. Indeed, aside from the superhero each wholesale super clone watches features, the biggest difference between the Marvel APs is the movements. For Spider-Man, the mechanism comes from the latest Code 11:59. “As well as working on improving the visibility and readability, we wanted to give a much more 3D effect for the character. We stripped as many things as possible to keep the character almost floating in the watch,” says Bennahmias.
Why is it a Royal Oak Concept Tourbillon?
“Because you cannot touch Royal Oak – that’s the absolute icon,” Bennahmias tells GQ. “And because of its size and thickness, you cannot really play with characters on the dial. Then the [Royal Oak] Offshore is for sports and is thick and bold so not built right for this. Whereas the Swiss movements replica Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Concept watches is all about the future and Marvel is always looking forward. That’s the vibe and the message we wanted to deliver with the concept.”
Times are changing
One of the most exciting things about this ongoing partnership is the role reversal we are witnessing when it comes to good old education. Historically, a father would have a watch passed down to him from his father, and they’d teach their kids all about how chronographs work and how to pronounce tourbillon etc – all the important bits – in the knowledge that one day they’d do the same for their kids. Heartwarming stuff, and a narrative used for many a luxury advertising campaign. No doubt Richard Parker – born and raised in Queens, New York City – will be proudly looking down on his son Peter’s latest achievements; not just saving lives as Spider-Man but also bagging himself his very own China fake watches design. Because this collab has flipped that storytelling on its head.
“What we’ve achieved in the past 20 years by partnering with the Jay-Z’s and LeBron James’s of the world, and Marvel, is these names open the gates to a much, much younger audience. Today, we are seeing 20-year-old kids educating their parents and taking them into the brand – it’s the exact opposite to how it used to be,” says Bennahmias. “With social media and with the way the kids want to learn and discover, they are the best ambassadors we could ever get and thanks to our shift from being very conservative, we could do this slightly differently compared to others.”
Raising money for a good cause
The biggest of Marvel geeks might remember that Spider-Man’s dad (not his Uncle Ben) also believed in power and responsibility and was known as a young man to stand up to bullies and try to help them rather than just fighting back. So he’ll be buzzing up in MCU heaven that his son’s (have we taken this analogy too far?) replica watches shop is also responsible for raising money for First Book and Ashoka, non-profit organisations that work to empower young people to create change and a positive impact.
There was a one-of-a-kind Black Panther version that sold for $5.2m. And the same applies in 2023 with Spider-Man. A unique black on black piece boasting extra special superpowers – he’s in a black suit (a killer ref to the one rocked by Spider-Man a few times in the ’80s comics), and they have gone all out in the innovation stakes, creating a spider web-like Shellac-based look embossed on the white gold that makes the legs of the spider glow – was auctioned off for $6.2m.
Back in 2021, AP was not expecting to raise as much money as it did with the one-of-a-kind Black Panther piece. “We had a goal to reach $1.5m,” Bennahmias admits. “Before Black Panther, we didn’t have many fake watches for men in the history of the brand that had fetched a million for an auction.”
Really though, anything involving Marvel memorabilia and luxury Swiss replica watches is a no-brainer for wealthy fanatics. Which is why anyone (like Serena Williams, Neymar and Virgil van Dijk) who managed to bag a Black Panther AP gets first right of refusal on the Spider-Man piece. It’s like Top Trumps, but for six-figure watches.
What comes next?
Of course, such is the world we live in, as soon as one thing drops we want to know what’s next.
Marvel is notorious for being sworn to secrecy when it comes to future plans, but does Bennahmias know? “Number three is not [Marvel’s] choice, we already know what it will be and it will be in 2025,” he smiles. “I have to say on the female characters, there are some good ones, which could show up at some point…”