The Story Of Time By Rolex


Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)

The time ahead

With Story of Time the history of timekeeping is told. Candles, sundials, sun worshippers…it all ends with the Rolex watch.

The time ahead

This movie has the look and feel of a Dollywood film. However, it is an English production from Signal Film. The creative source in design and art direction for this film about the history of time is Jan Coolen, a former George Pal employee. The camerawork is done by Frans Hendrix. Because of the World War-II both gentlemen wandered, but eventually ended up at Signal Film.
The design can be called spectacular in this movie. Compare this film with another production by Geesink from the same era: Kermesse Fantastique (1951).


Story of Time by Rolex won the prize for best advertising film in Berlin in 1951 and also received an Oscar nomination for best documentary.


Signal Film ceased to exist, due to economic reasons. That is why Jan Coolen and Frans Hendrix came to Dollywood. Their qualities were shown. Granted on the basis of their succesful English achievements, the couple started making films as Story of Light and Light and Mankind right after their employment. They were given a free hand to demonstrate their vision on storytelling. The Dollywood films were more famous than these other ones, stated below. While watching, keep in mind that this film was the first in line of a series of “Story of” films.

The film has been rotated in two versions. One version in which a narrator explains the images and a version in which only the music band is used. It is not known whether there was a special reason for this. In the past, films were provided with a live commentary in some cases; this seems out of place here. Possibly an artistic consideration was the basis for not allowing the viewer to be distracted by spoken text. Then he could let the beautiful images and music work on him. Both versions are included here below.

Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)
Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)Story Of Time By Rolex (1949)


Title:Story of Time
Client:Rolex horloges
10 minuten
Year of production:1949
Producer:Robert G. Leffingwell voor Signal Films, Londen
Story:Michael Stainer-Hutchins
                                       Research:Prof. A. Chapuis, Dr. H.C. Neuchatel University 
Music:Guy Warrack
Performed by:
The London Symphonic Orchestra, olv Guy Warrack
Sound system:RCA Sound System
Art Director:Jan Coolen
Camera & Animation:Frans Hendrix
Format:35 mm, Technicolor