T he Watchmaker’s Apprentice is fundamentally a documentary about two very special men, whose skills are unparalleled in the world today – the only men in history to master an art so completely and perfectly, that between them, they are successfully reviving an ancient industry.
The documentary is also about the passage of time, about making every moment count, about life and – ultimately – about death; itʼs about our fleeting existence, and the opportunities we have to leave an eternally lasting imprint on the world should we choose to push ourselves and our creative, scientific and ‘human’ abilities to their full potential.
It’s about obsession. Passion. Personality. At the very heart of the story lies the fascinating and vividly colourful relationship between the two protagonists – The Watchmaker himself, George Daniels CBE, and his Apprentice Roger W Smith, the only man George ever deemed worthy to pass his hard-earned knowledge and skills to in order to continue his life’s work.
Their relationship is captivating – one of mutual respect and arms-length friendship, with a healthy dose of competition, somewhat akin to a father and son working in the same field, but made all the more interesting because of their entirely disparate personalities.
It was only when George passed away sadly before this documentary was completed, aged 85, that the true depth of the admiration the men had formed for each other began to become apparent: in Roger’s final interviews, the moving eulogies at the funeral, and in George’s generous and heartfelt final gesture revealed in the execution of his Final Will and Testament…
The Watchmaker’s Apprentice, made by independent production company DAM Productions on the Isle of Man, contains the last interview George Daniels gave, just months before his death in October 2011. As a result of the relationship built with our team over 18 months of filming, the story will be told through the compassionate eyes of a friend; unbridled access has enabled us to acquire fascinating footage of Georgeʼs workshop (exactly as he left it before it was dismantled), his wonderful collection of vintage cars and his beautiful home – the contents of which have since been distributed to auction houses around the world.
The documentary is narrated by acclaimed British actor, John Rhys-Davies (‘Lord of the Rings’, ‘Indiana Jones’), and features interviews with numerous esteemed friends, family and colleagues of both men. Music includes songs by Manx artists Davy Knowles and Christine Collister, 3D animation and character illustration by Manx 3D/Maya artist Andrew Martin and additional graphical representations by Gary Myers.