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Seiko H558-5000

The Seiko H558-5000 used in A View To A Kill, as auctioned by Prop Store in 2017
The Seiko H558-5000 used in A View To A Kill, as auctioned by Prop Store in 2017
photo © Prop Store
photo © MGM/UA, United Pictures, EON, Danjaq
The watch can be spotted clearly in a deleted scene from the film A View To A Kill
photo © MGM/UA, United Pictures, EON, Danjaq

photo © Anderson & Garland
The back of the watch used for the film has serial number 246904 and the word SAMPLE stamped in the case
photo © Anderson & Garland

photo © Anderson & Garland
The Seiko movement of the movie watch was replaced for the film by a garrote mechanism
photo © Anderson & Garland

photo © Anderson & Garland
The garrote mechanism of the Seiko movie watch
photo © Anderson & Garland

photo © Anderson & Garland
The Seiko H558-5000 used for the Bond film A View To A Kill
photo © Anderson & Garland

James Bond (Roger Moore) wears a Seiko H558-5000 digital-analog dual-display watch in the movie A View To A Kill (1985).

The watch is on Bond's wrist in Paris (Eiffel Tower scene) but doesn't get a lot of screen time compared to other Seiko watches worn in previous Bond films.

Thanks to auctions, and a deleted scene, the details of the watch are known. The original intention for this watch was to be used as a garrote. To garrote (also spelled garrotte, or garotte) someone is to strangle him or her with a cord or wire. The watch and wire can be seen clearly in a deleted scene from the film.

Deleted Scene
The deleted scene from A View To A Kill shows James Bond being released from a jail in Paris and, together with M, getting back his personal effects, which include folded bills in a moneyclip, his Walther PPKPhilips 660 voice recorder, gun metal torch lighter, some tools and a black fountain pen (possibly a reference to the acid pen seen in Octopussy).

The French police officer holds up the Seiko, saying: "One watch. Most unusual", while demonstrating the garrote wire. Bond replies: "From Russia, with love", a reference to the garrote watch used by Red Grant (Robert Shaw) in the opening sequence of From Russia With Love (1963).

Auction
A prop Seiko H558 watch with the garrote feature, used for filming A View To A Kill, was sold as Lot #1158 at the Anderson & Garland Fine Art auction on 8th December 2016 for £3,000. According to the auction house at the time, the watch was offered for sale by Angela Rafferty, and that provenance of the watch was given to her by a member of the EON Productions crew.

A year later, during the Prop Store Live Auction in 2017 the same Seiko watch was sold as Lot #238 for £6,710 (approx. $8,900 / €7,700).

The production watch has the original Seiko case, and the back of the case is stamped with the serial number 246904 and with the word SAMPLE. There is no movement inside the case, only the mechanism of the garrotting wire, which comes out via the side button / crown. The watch is also fitted with a dummy digital readout.

The Seiko H558-5000 diver's watch is an analogue and digital quartz watch with chronograph, digital alarm and water resistant up to 150m. The large watch has a case diameter of 46mm. The watch was produced from 1982 - 1990.

Arnold Schwarzenegger
The Seiko H558-5000 is most famous for being worn by Arnold Schwarzenegger in several of his 1980s movies, including Commando (1985), Raw Deal (1986), Predator (1987) and The Running Man (1987). Therefor it is often referred to as the Seiko Arnie Diver H558-5000. The watches worn by Schwarzenegger are sometimes variations or modified versions of the Seiko H558-5000.

How to buy
The Seiko H558-5000 can still easily be found on eBay, but the prices are usually quite high, currently around $900 - $3,000 depending on the condition of the watch, mostly due to the link with Arnold Schwarzenegger and James Bond.

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Note that not all Seiko H558-5000's are the same. The production used one from the auctions shows that the movie version had an orange/red text "Diver's 150m", while most watches offered online have a yellow text. The case number is H558-5000 but the actual model numbers can vary. According to James Bond Watch Blog, the correct Bond model is "SPW001".

Reissue 2019
In 2019, Seiko released the Seiko Prospex Solar SNJ025, basically a remake of the Arnold Schwarzenegger / James Bond Seiko H558-5000. The watch with a suggested retail price of $525 is already sold out in many places but can be found on eBay or specialist stores. 

Other Seiko watches
In the same film, James Bond also wears a Seiko 7A28 7020 Quartz Chronograph. In other Bond films Roger Moore wore other Seiko watches including Seiko 0674 LC (The Spy Who Loved Me), Seiko M354 (Moonraker), Seiko G757 5020 and Seiko TV Watch (Octopussy), or the Analogue/Digital Seiko H357 5040 in For Your Eyes Only.

Product Code: 
ga087

Orlebar Brown

Comments

Thank you Aleks, I have added the watch to the article.

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