BY Lauren Swanson-Tyda | May 8, 2019 | People
When Sterling K. Brown is not inciting viewers to tears as Randall on This is Us or stealing vibranium in Black Panther, he enjoys collecting luxury watches. We caught up with the actor and spokesperson for IWC Schaffhausen at the grand opening of the watch brand’s new boutique at Scottsdale Fashion Square to talk timepieces, his new role on The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and next steps in his career.
Sterling K. Brown at the grand opening of IWC Schaffhausen's new boutique at Scottsdale Fashion Square
On Watch Collecting
Have you always been passionate about watches? What triggered your interest in watches and watchmaking?
Initially, I thought loving jewelry was something my wife took ownership of, but I always searched for something geared towards men. While I’ve always been a fan of necklaces and watches, I started to see friends of mine evolve into watch connoisseurs. From there, I knew I wanted to get to that place: where I could purchase and wear a luxurious timepiece and know it inside and out. Since then, I’ve been given that opportunity to purchase quality timepieces and have taken the time to learn about them. Buying a new watch that I’m excited about is a way that I treat myself. That’s what IWC means to me—the brand represents a place in my life where I can own and enjoy luxurious items.
How many watches do you own?
Right now, I have about 10 timepieces and each exudes its own understated elegance.
What do you love most about timepieces?
Watches are pieces of functional, yet luxurious jewelry that serves to strengthen any man’s look. I like to make a statement, but also love the intricacies of timepieces and the craftsmanship that goes into them.
Tell me about IWC Schaffhausen's Spitfire Collection—what most excites you about this new rollout?
It has this amazing old-school feel about it. Generally, I feel like men have an attachment to nostalgia and the Spitfire Collection captures that feeling entirely. Seeing the pieces in the line makes me want to put on like a leather helmet, climb into a Spitfire and fly across the world. The launch of the Spitfire Collection and IWC’s plans for “The Longest Flight”—where two pilots are making the first round-the-world trip in a Silver Spitfire—are genuinely cool concepts that tap into this shared, nostalgic feeling that resonates with a lot of people.
What about IWC pieces most intrigues you?
IWC captures elegance in a wonderful way in that the pieces exude this overwhelmingly luxurious feeling, while still retaining their timelessness. They’re clean and sleek, and it’s the perfect representation of what jewelry can be for men.
What was the first “real” watch you purchased? Do you still have it?
I bought the Ironman watch for myself in high school and that was my first truly meaningful watch purchase. I was an athlete and the timepiece looked the part, bringing some more edge to my athletic persona. The feeling of wearing it struck a chord with me, and I realized that a watch is not just a watch – it’s an experience. It was completely different from something I would wear today, but at age 16, it made me understand how a timepiece can elevate whatever look you’re going for while bringing functionality to the table—whether you’re pilot or a high school athlete.
Do you collect anything other than watches? If so, what?
While they’re not anywhere near the level of luxury associated with my timepieces, I also have quite the collection of sunglasses. I have Lasik surgery so I’m adamant about protecting my investment and sunglasses allow me to add a little chicness to my outfit, which I really enjoy.
The new IWC Shaffhausen boutique at Scottsdale Fashion Square is the brand's first flagship store in the Valley.
On His Career
You just joined the cast of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”—what are you most excited about with that role? Any details about the character you can share?
I can’t really share any of those details just yet, but I will say that I act with Rachel Brosnahan and Alex Borstein and am excited to work with such talented people. If there’s an opportunity to act with Tony Shalhoub as well, I would honestly go crazy with happiness. The Palladinos are masterful storytellers. Their vision of the world is so specific, and the dialogue has a pace and rhythm unlike anything else on television. It’s essentially verbal gymnastics, but it’s the kind of gymnastics I enjoy. Having a background in theater, I see the most similarities between this show and theater than anything else on-air.
You have accomplished so much as an actor. What are you most proud of?
In my opinion, my greatest accomplishment is being a dad – I enjoy it more than anything and have two beautiful boys. In terms of my work, it’s difficult to choose between Black Panther, “This is Us” and “The People Versus OJ Simpson.” They all mean something different in my career and truly came together in such a wonderful way.
What’s next for you?
I’m excited about being a producer and starting my production company: Indian Meadows, which leans into intelligent diversity. It’s focused on giving people access to tell their stories—many of which wouldn’t get the opportunity otherwise. I’m so grateful to be in a position where I can help to boost people’s dreams and careers. I had so much help getting to where I am today and I’m looking forward to the opportunity to help others get here too.
Photography Courtesy Of: Jason Wise/Getty Images