Carmel Magazine

CM Winter 2015 Final

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ollywood continues to make movies year after year, but there was a legendary period in film's history that was touched by a certain magic. It was called the Golden Era of Film. Spanning the 1920s to the early 1960s, Hollywood produced some of its most iconic characters in unforgettable scenes; each frame dusted in a quintessential style unparalleled to this day. Currently anything from that era is highly desired and celebrated by col- lectors, with the rarest items snagging top bids at auction. To own the most coveted items, the ones that greatly increase in value over a period of time, collectors must be prepared to lay out substantial sums of money for ownership. For example, the Cowardly Lion costume from the 1939 "Wizard of Oz" recently sold for $3.1 million at Bonhams Film Memorabilia Auction in New York. That's a gigantic increase from the $826,000 it sold for in 2006. Why so much for an old costume? It's about nostalgia, childhood, and owning a piece of his- tory from the most loved film of all time. We watched this movie as kids, and the Cowardly Lion was the most endearing of all characters. The most expensive movie star autograph? Joe DiMaggio and Marilyn Monroe's signed base- ball at $191,200, where both icons signed. Not only did it become one of the most valuable of all baseball memorabilia, it was the most expensive signed baseball in the world when it was sold in 2006. Biggest number spent for a movie automobile? In the films "Goldfinger" and "Thunderball," James Bond's Aston Martin, complete with all the gadg- ets intact, like front wing machine guns and an ejector, sold in 2010 for $4.1 million. Here are ten of the f inest movie memorabilia collectibles sold to date, starting with number ten: 10. James Dean's switchblade from that iconic scene in "Rebel Without a Cause"—$20,000 9. "Gone with the Wind" negligee, worn by Vivien Leigh as Scarlett O'Hara, under a lavish fox fur-trimmed velvet cape in the scene in which Bonnie Blue dies—$56,250 8. Gene Kelly's "Singin' in the Rain" water-stained suit—$106,250 7. "Citizen Kane" trophy from the 1941 Orson Welles classic—$273,544 6. The "Casablanca" piano, an incredible prop from one of the most memorable movies ever made, sold at Sotheby's in 2012 to Leonardo DiCaprio—$602,800 5. The most famous 'little black dress' of all time, Audrey Hepburn's "Breakfast at Tiffany's" Givenchy gown—$923,187 4. Judy Garland's blue 'Dorothy' dress from "The Wizard of Oz"— $1.2 million. (By the way, her ruby slippers sold for $666,000 at Christie's in 2000). 3. David O. Selznick's "Gone with the Wind" Oscar award. When Christie's offered it for sale in 1999, it was valued at $300,000. Michael Jackson vowed to own it at any price. Jackson purchased it for a record- breaking $1.56 million. 2. The statue from "The Maltese Falcon," the 1941 Humphrey Bogar t film, appeared at Bonham's in 2013, selling for $4 million. 1. The most expensive movie memorabilia prop, according to records, is the white dress Marilyn Monroe wore in "The Seven Year Itch," from the famous subway scene, which sold for a reported $4.6 million. The available movie memorabilia affordable to us mere mortals can be found on eBay, Amazon, New Line Cinema Auction, antique shops and malls, and vintage bookstores. The offerings range from autographs, maga- zines, movie scripts, theater lobby posters, cigarette cards, movie star cook- books, film props and even 'things' once owned by the stars. Authentication is key, but the hunt is exciting and the display options are endless. 92 C A R M E L M A G A Z I N E • W I N T E R 2 0 1 5 COLLECTING B Y M A R J O R I E S N O W Movie Memorabilia H

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