Adrien Brody in Tokyo. Photo: Courtesy of Bulgari

When Adrien Brody won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his seminal role in Roman Polanski’s 2002 The Pianist, he became the youngest actor to win in that category (a title he holds to this day). He’s also the first American actor to receive the French César Award. Yet, despite the accolades, he remains an extremely likeable guy with an earnestness and ready laughter that puts you immediately at ease. We caught up with the actor and Bulgari ambassador at the brand’s retrospective exhibition in Tokyo.

On his love for watches: “I remember having a G-Shock when I was in high school. It was great; and I was very proud that it was able to withstand anything. I’d just throw it across the room and the battery lasted forever. It was really fun. Now, I really love the Octo design; I think I gravitate to it the most. The juxtaposition between the masculinity and the gracefulness is really special and, aesthetically, it really references an Art Deco design – which is something I respond to as well. It’s a cool watch.”

Bulgari Octo Finissimo Tourbillon. Photo: Courtesy of Bulgari

On his favourite complication: “I love tourbillons just because they’re fun to look at, and I like that they’re a little flashy. I have a Bvlgari Bvlgari tourbillon. It’s a limited edition and it’s beautiful.”

On his recent trip to Nepal for Save the Children: “It was wonderful, really meaningful and heartbreaking; and it made me realise how important it is to do more, and be grateful. I’m glad that Bulgari has a sincere interest in philanthropy that has allowed me to participate. I was able to bring funding to Save the Children at Rockaway, Queens, for children who were affected by the hurricane a couple of years ago. And children obviously need the most help. I mean, even in First World countries, there are many underprivileged children and they need the guidance, the education, to evolve and hopefully lead future generations.”

Bulgari Octo Finissimo. Photo: Courtesy of Bulgari

On the importance of fashion: “Fashion goes hand in hand with Hollywood, and with film-making, and every respect of being an actor and finding a character; wardrobe has a lot to do with transformation. So I do have a relationship with clothing; it’s just a bit more complex than just an appreciation for fashion.”

On Bulgari: “In an artistic capacity, the objectives that I have as an artist, and the objectives that Bulgari has as a brand… it’s very similar, you know? You want to create something timeless, memorable and unique that is also viable. And that is the objective of a film actor. In order for my work to be meaningful, it has to be personal to me; it has to be unique so that when you see a performance of mine, you shouldn’t be able to envision someone else playing the role – I should become that character. There is a need for Bulgari to be iconic as well in its style and what it creates. I’ve seen many parallels.”

By Charmaine Ho