Top 10 Most Memorable Movie Props Sold at Auction
Many people would like to bring a piece of Hollywood to their home and what better way to do that than with an original movie heirloom? Film studios only realized that their objects could be worth a fortune in the 1970s. Before that time, stage material and costumes were put into storage, reused and sometimes even brought home as a souvenir by employees. When James Thomas Aubrey Jr. was appointed President of MGM Studios, to cut costs, he decided to auction off thousands of items that were in storage and thus began the mania of collecting. But which film memorabilia and props are the most popular? We bet you’ll want at least one of these.
10. The sword of Aragorn from “The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King”
Andúril, the weapon of the hero Aragorn in the final chapter of the trilogy “The Lord of the Rings” was auctioned by Sir Christopher Lee in 2014, exceeding the initial estimated price by almost double: it was in fact priced at 437,000 $.
9. Dorothy’s shoes from “The Wizard of Oz”
In the book by L. Frank Baum, the famous ruby red shoes were actually silver, but the color was changed to red in the film version to put them even more in contrast with the yellow brick road. Only four pairs remain: one is exhibited in the Smithsonian Museum of American History, one was stolen from the Judy Garland Museum in 2005 and another was auctioned in 2000. This last pair was sold for the incredible sum of $ 660,000.
8. Audrey Hepburn’s little black dress from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”
Designed by Hepburn’s friend, Givenchy, the iconic black dress appears in the opening scene of “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” when Audrey gets out of a yellow New York cab. It seems that at least 3 copies of this dress have survived. One is in the Givenchy archives, one is on display at a costume museum in Madrid and one was auctioned in 2006 for an impressive $ 807,000.
7. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang
For the film version, six cars were created, including a race car registered in the UK as GEN11. He made several appearances in 2010 and was eventually auctioned in 2011 for a fantastic $ 805,000.
6. KITT from Knightrider
In 1982, the supercar controlled by an artificial intelligence, KITT, appeared on the screen and immediately hit the public. Over the years, many copies of KITT have been created and, in 2014, David Hasselhoff also sold his 1986 version by auction. Only 2 years later a 1984 Pontiac Firebird was arranged to make it look like this iconic film and was auctionedh for € 34,000.
5. Luke Skywalker’s Lightsaber
Luke’s iconic Jedi weapon seems far less magical in reality. The handle was built with old flash batteries for the Graflex handheld camera and the blade was a wooden pole sprinkled with a special reflective paint that made it easier to add light onto the blade in post-production. Apart from the humble construction, the noble weapon of “A New Hope” and “The Empire Strikes Back” was sold in 2008 for the stellar figure of $ 240,000.
4. The DeLorean from Back To The Future
Another iconic piece of film memorabilia. Among the numerous DeLorean created for the film trilogy, today only 4 remain. One is on display at Universal Studios in Hollywood, one at Universal Studios in Orlando and another was auctioned in 2011 for the futuristic $ 541,000.
3. The door from Rick’s Cafe in “Casablanca”
Everyone goes to Ricks and every character in the film has made his way through those doors. As soon as the coffee appears on the screen, the camera goes down, crosses these doors and shows the hustle and bustle inside. They were auctioned in 2014 for the elegant sum of $ 115,000.
2. Marilyn Monroe’s Dress from “The Seven Year Itch”
Perhaps one of films most iconic moments of all time is when Marilyn Monroe’s dress is lifted by the wind in the movie “The Seven Year Itch”. Marilyn’s dress was part of the collection of about 3500 costumes in the history of cinema owned by Debbie Reynold who one day wanted to exhibit the dress in her own museum. Unfortunately that dream has never come true. Instead, she decided to sell her collection and, in 2011, this legendary white dress was auctioned for a huge sum of 4.6 million dollars (excluding the $ 1 million commission).
1. Bond’s Aston Martin from “Goldfinger”
This car, which is immediately associated with the British spy most loved by everyone, has appeared not in one, but two James Bond films: “Goldfinger” and “Thunderball”. There were 2 versions of the DB5, the car equipped with all the gadgets needed for international espionage including revolving plates, front machine guns and ejection seat, just to name a few. The second car was the “road car” used for everyday driving. One of these was stolen from a hangar at Boca Rotan airport and has never been found, and the other has been auctioned for 4.6 million dollars.