11 Most Memorable Jewellery Seen in Movies
Playing a leading role alongside these silver screen sirens, these dazzlers from international jewellery maisons each have a story to share. Karishma Tulsidas discovers their tales.
Stealing the attention from a Bond girl is no mean feat, but David Morris managed to do just that in four James Bond flicks: Diamonds are Forever (1971), The Man with the Golden Gun (1974), Tomorrow Never Dies (1997) and The World is Not Enough (1999). In Tomorrow Never Dies, Teri Hatcher is seen wearing a diamond necklace and sapphire ring by David Morris in a love scene with Pierce Brosnan; her character is wearing the same pieces when she’s subsequently murdered.
“A kiss on the hand may be quite continental, but diamonds are a girl’s best friend...” Marilyn Monroe played a loveable gold digger in Gentlemen Prefer Blondes who knew her priorities in life — and the jewellery houses that made them. Cartier gets a special mention in her musical number Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend and a few years later makes one of its first product placements in Monroe’s comedic hit Some Like It Hot. Tony Curtis discreetly borrows the red box containing a diamond bracelet from Jack Lemmon’s character who is disguised as a woman, and gives it to Monroe.
Post-war decadence is best illustrated in Jean Cocteau’s Beauty and the Beast, where Josette Day (playing the lead character) is seen shedding tears that turn into diamonds — genuine pear-shaped rocks from the maison of Cartier. Her infatuation with the maison would continue during her lifetime, and she would go on to obtain Cartier’s famous animal brooches, including butterflies and lizards.
When you’re the highest paid actress of the 1920s, your first retail stop would naturally be Cartier. Gloria Swanson, purported mistress of Joseph Kennedy Sr, commissioned a diamond and rock crystal bracelet from the maison in the 1930s. It was six months in the making, after which she promptly declared that she wanted a second one because “I have two wrists!” She often wore the bracelets together, and they were seen in her 1933 flick Perfect Understanding, and Sunset Boulevard, the 1950 tale reflecting her life.
In her last cinematic role before her 1956 royal wedding, Grace Kelly reportedly refused to remove her engagement ring, a Cartier 10.48-carat emerald-cut diamond ring, during filming. There are various allusions to the ring throughout High Society, as Kelly plays the role of an entitled 26-year-old heiress on the verge of a second marriage even though her ex-husband is still in love with her. Following her wedding to Prince Rainier III of Monaco, Cartier crafted various masterpieces for her until her untimely death in 1982. Her life was feted on the silver screen in 2013, with Nicole Kidman playing the leading role in Grace of Monaco. The jeweller created various pieces for the movie as well.
A fan of Bulgari, Ingrid Bergman handpicked the pieces she wore in 1964’s The Visit at the Italian jeweller’s Via dei Condotti boutique in Rome. The movie, which won René Hubert a nomination for best costume design at the Academy Awards, saw the Swedish actress play the role of a wealthy lady who tries to persuade her fellow villagers to kill the father of her child.
“The only Italian word she knows is Bulgari,” Richard Burton once said of Elizabeth Taylor. One of the world’s most famous magpies, Taylor is featured here on the set of Cleopatra, wearing the maison’s Serpenti bracelet.
Even though her character is loathsome in Martin Scorsese’s modern classic Casino, Sharon Stone delivers one of her most visually arresting performances. Of note is this scene where she basks in the aftermath of Ace’s (Robert de Niro) proposal, swathed in a chinchilla coat and caressing the decadent Bulgari jewels strewn around her.
Having adorned film stars on the red carpet as official partner of the Cannes Film Festival, Chopard took to the big screen in 2013 to star in the biopic Diana, headlined by Naomi Watts. Alongside elaborate suites of dazzlers, Chopard also crafted a pair of sapphire and diamond studs for the movie, as the Princess of Wales believed that earrings best suited her hairstyle.
Tiffany & Co.
Tiffany & Co.’s little blue box plays an integral role in chick flick Bride Wars, as Kate Hudson’s character Liv spoils her proposal surprise when she spots the box at her boyfriend’s home. She subsequently sports the Tiffany Novo ring in the film, a win for the brand despite the movie’s flop at the box office.
Tiffany & Co.
Reese witherspoon was recently named a friend of Tiffany & Co., but her relationship with the jeweller was predestined. Her grandmother gifted her a Tiffany lock necklace with her initials when she graduated high school, which she wore in Legally Blonde. In Sweet Home Alabama, Patrick Dempsey’s character proposed to Witherspoon’s at the all-American jeweller’s flagship boutique in New York’s Fifth Avenue.