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Cartier's New Film Stars Shalom Harlow, a Panther and Oodles of Jewels

Courtesy of Cartier

Last night, we headed through the NYC drizzle to the Metropolitan Museum of Art for a special preview of Cartier's new L'Odyseée de Cartier short film. There, we were greeted at the museum's front steps by two rows of official Cartier bellhops (in full uniform), who shielded us with branded umbrellas until we were safe and dry inside the building.

See, that's just the way things are done chez Cartier. After champagne and chocolates in the Met's Temple of Dendur, we were ushered into a screening room by—yes—more Cartier-capped bellhops. There, we were the first to screen the legendary jewelry company's mini-movie which, as its title suggests, is all about Cartier's rich heritage and history.

The protagonist of the story, which runs just under four minutes long, is a gorgeous panther—the same creature, of course, that's immortalized in the jeweled bangles and rings in Cartier's Les Panthères collection. Over the course of the short, we see the regal cat travel through India, China, Russia and France—all places the brand has mined for design inspiration. She faces off with a golden dragon at the Great Wall, leaps through oversized LOVE bracelets on a snowy mountaintop and walks through an ornate palace filled with emerald- and ruby-studded foliage. Gorgeous supermodel Shalom Harlow even makes a cameo at the end, wearing—spoiler alert!—a platinum panther bracelet that seems oddly appealing to the real-life animal. The film is visually stunning, and it was no suprise for us to learn it took about two years and an on-location staff of 60 to complete.

After the screening, we were treated to a few anecdotes from Cartier's 165 years in the industry, with some help from guest moderator Kate Betts. Our favorite takeaway tale? Back in the '70s, Mexican film star María Félix commissioned a special necklace from Cartier that would replicate her two pet crocodiles in a single necklace. And to ensure the final product would be true to life, Félix had her beloved reptiles stay at the company's Parisian boutique while jewelers worked on the design, making sure all details were completely realistic. Seems that despite their penchant for luxury to the nth degree, Cartier has always had a soft spot for animals.

Check out a few stills from L'Odyssée de Cartier below, and head over to Cartier's Facebook page tomorrow when the full film launches.

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