The racing suit worn by the great Steve McQueen in his epic 1971 motorsports film Le Mans is being offered for sale by Toronto's Collector's Studio. The iconic two-piece flame resistant Nomex cream uniform made by Hinchman of Indianapolis bears the name of McQueen's character in the movie, Michael Delaney. It also features the insignia of Gulf, Heuer, Firestone, and the American flag. While the company has not put a firm price on the suit, there have been several serious offers so far, the highest of which is $140,000. The suit shows good signs of use and is fully documented, having been donated by Solar Productions / MGM to a British newspaper for a Le Mans themed contest in 1971. It was presented to the winner by British racing legend Richard Attwood, who won Le Mans in 1970 driving the famous Porsche 917K with Gulf livery made famous by McQueen. McQueen memorabilia is of course a proven earner; Antiquorum sold the actor's Rolex Submariner at auction last year for $234,000.
For some New Year's Day is a chance to recover and watch football but for Don Presley Auctions the 2011 auction year begins on New Year's Day with an annual sale. Approximately 600 lots will be offered including several pieces of Hollywood memorabilia. A tuxedo shirt made by Beverly Hills men's clothier Nat Wise for Frank Sinatra is one of the intriguing lots. The consignor bought it in a neighbor's yard sale for $5 and is estimated for $10-$1,000. A two-piece eyelet-trimmed sleeveless blouse and skirt is believed to have been the property of Marilyn Monroe. The outfit ensemble previously belonged to Robert Slatzer, the late Hollywood biographer and newspaper reporter who claimed he and Monroe were wed in Mexico in 1952. The sale will also feature bronze fountains and other pieces owned by Liberace.
Back in November we broke the news that a Walther pistol wielded by Sean Connery as James Bond in the photo shoot used for the main image in the poster and advertising campaign for 1963's From Russia With Love (above) was being auctioned off at Christie's' Popular Culture: Film and Entertainment sale in London. Now the results of Nov. 25 sale are in, and the weapon – in actual fact an air gun – has sold for an astonishing $437,000, almost 14 times it's high pre-sale estimate of $32,000. The iconic image of Connery holding the gun was later used in advertising and promotional material for every Bond film up until 1967's You Only Live Twice and remains a major pop culture paragon.
Museums dedicated to single figures don't always have a long life span (consider the closing of the Liberace museum in Las Vegas and the Roy Rogers museum). That hasn't stopped the plans for a Red Skelton museum in Indiana. Skelton, who died in 1997, was a popular actor and comedian and later an artist of clown paintings. The plans for a Red Skelton museum have been underway for some time but they got a big donation to further the cause recently.
The Vincennes Sun-Commercial reported this week that Frank Ladner, an Illinois businessman, has donated $1 million toward building a museum honoring comedian Red Skelton in his hometown of Vincennes, Indiana. This puts the Red Skelton Museum Foundation $1.3 million away from its $4 million fundraising goal for building the museum at the Vincennes University performing arts center already named for the actor. The museum would feature costumes, awards and paintings alongside displays about his influence on early television and comedy and a theater also will show a series of Skelton's movies. The museum is being created with private funds.
Julien's Auctions presents an auction of "Icons & Idols" memorabilia and ephemera on December 3rd and 4th, 2010 in Beverly Hills, California that features an extensive collection of John Lennon/Beatles memorabilia.
The auction includes handwritten working lyrics, drawings and clothing from John Lennon. One of the most expensive lots is a jacket, worn by Lennon in 1966 for a Life magazine photo shoot. It is estimated to sell for as much as $200,000. Another top lot is a guitar that Jimi Hendrix borrowed from a friend when he was growing up and used in his first stage performances. The vintage guitar is currently on display at the Seattle Experience Music Project in an exhibition devoted to Jimi Hendrix and is also estimated to sell for as much as $200,000. The auction also offers personal clothing from icons such as Cher, Madonna and Michael Jackson.
An extraordinary Rolex pre-Daytona chronograph worn by George Lazenby as James Bond in 1969's On Her Majesty's Secret Service is being offered for sale in Miami. It's extremely rare for an actual Bond movie watch, let alone a rare Rolex model, to come onto the market. The stainless steel timepiece, ref # 6238, has been written about on many 007 fan sites and Rolex blogs. The Rolex was originally purchased by Bond filmmakers EON productions on October 23, 1968 for use by the underrated Lazenby in the film, and was later sold off among other props. It last surfaced at Christie'sFilm and Entertainment sale in London in 2003, where it went for $40,000. Recently acquired by Miami's Matthew Bain Inc., it's now being offered at an undisclosed price that could easily reach $250,000 or more.
The new owner of late reclusive author J.D. Salinger's compound in Cornish, New Hampshire is apparently selling off some of the house's fixtures with an eye towards cashing on on his literary reputation. The Vault of Forsythe, Inc., a collectibles dealer based in North Carolina, is handling the items and has just listed the toilet from Salinger's home on eBay with a "buy it now" price of $1 million, though other offers are being accepted and five have apparently already been made. This could well be a hoax aimed at those who are overly worshipful of the Catcher in the Rye author, but as the vendor seems legit we doubt it. We won't speculate on the process of authentication however. The full listing for the curious commode reads as follows:
When a television show ends there are a lot of props. Some get used for other shows but many get sold off. After ABC's television show "Lost" had its finale last spring, there were plenty of items that were suddenly no longer needed. Hollywood props and memorabilia auctioneer Profiles in History is helping ABC Studios to auction off costumes, props and various set pieces from the show in a massive two-day auction event at the the Barker Hanger at Santa Monica Airport on August 21 and 22. Over 1,000 items are being auctioned off from costumes, to Volkswagen vans to pieces of Oceanic Flight 815 like the airplane chairs shown above. Our sister blog TV Squad rounded up the top ten most covetable items including Hurley's winning lottery ticket and Camaro and the 'Lost' finale script signed by the executive producers.
There has been some controversy over certain auction items and whether or not they were used on screen. The Prop Blog has been covering this topic extensively breaking down some of the terminology. A screen-used prop is one that appears and is seen clearly on screen. These props are most valuable. Other props can be "production-made" which means that they were made for the show but didn't necessarily appear on screen. These props are less valuable. Most valuable are the "hero props" which are scene specific. Other types of props include back-ups, stunt props and double props. If you are just buying for your own enjoyment you don't really need to know the difference, except to make sure you don't pay too much, but for later resale these distinctions are key.
Ferrari founder Enzo Ferrari was obviously a man of great style - just look at the supercars bearing his name. For Ferrari enthusiasts he is of course nothing short of a god as well. Now Collector Studio Motorsport Gallery in Toronto is offering the ultimate in Ferrari memorabilia – a museum quality collection of Enzo's bespoke clothing and accessories, priced at $100,000. The highlight of the collection is an original Bertazzoni of Modena custom tailored beige wool houndstooth sport coat made for the great man in 1972, and worn for the next 10 years, including at the 1972 AutoSport ceremony, along with a pair of bespoke Bertazzoni gray flannel pants he wore with it.
Also included is an original and totally unique "Ferrari" brown and white silk necktie custom made for Enzo in 1978, and worn for the next 10 years; and an original pair of bespoke Marelli brown leather shoes worn by him in the 1970s and 1980s, complete with box. The collection comes accompanied by a letter of authenticity from a Ferrari colleague of Enzo's who acquired the items from him directly, as well as many photos of Enzo wearing each item. Also included are the original notes from the Modenese tailor who made the clothing, along with fabric swatch samples and measurements to match.
Baseball is still America's pastime and baseball memorabilia remains popular but one collector has amassed what has to be one of the most incredible collections gathered by a single person. The Jason Savas Baseball & Football Memorabilia Collection is practically a museum on its own. The collection took over 45 years to put together and includes thousands of objects dating from the 1860s to the present. The most expensive items have been auctioned already. These included tobacco tins and cigar boxes that fetched $10,000 to $20,000 each. There is still much more to choose, lighters, cigarette packs, replica gloves, swizzle sticks, baseballs, key chains, bobbleheads and photographs that depict generations of players and tell the history of the sport.
A special section of over 500 items tells the story of the effect of Babe Ruth on the nation. It's one thing to know that Ruth had a great impact on the game but quite another to stare at shelves stuffed with full-cheeked depictions of the legendary Yankee. Too big for shelves, there are 37 coin-operated sports-themed penny arcade games and gum ball dispensers that harken back to a more innocent time. A muto-scope offers a staccato look at the long-ago players in motion.
"Unlike my baseball card collection which was neatly organized and tucked away in shoe boxes in the closet, I was able to display my stadium concessions on shelves," says Savas. "What started as a hobby evolved into a passion over the next 45 years. Over the subsequent years, the sports memorabilia hobby has seen an immense increase in interest in displayable collectible items. Collectors all across the country have found that these display type items can be enjoyed on a full-time basis as they decorate their basements, offices, and dens."
The only known surviving piece from one of the original 1984 Terminator movie robots, a prop metal arm retrieved by a crew member from the debris of an explosion in the film's climax scene is headed for auction this summer. The two-foot-long prop "T-800 Terminator" metal arm (the robot played by Arnold Schwarzenegger) will be offered in a Beverly Hills, California auction by Heritage Auction Galleries on July 17, 2010.
"It's from the private collection of Shay Austin of Los Angeles who was an assistant art director on the movie, and she's kept it for over a quarter-century. No one was saving props for their future value as memorabilia in those days, and that's why original items from this classic film are so hard to find," said Doug Norwine of Heritage Auction Galleries. He estimates it will sell for $15,000 or more.
There were two full-size Terminator robots made for the movie, one for close-ups and one to be blown up in the movie. "After the explosion I ran up with the special effects crew to see what was left," Austin recalled. "We started picking up the pieces and I picked up the arm. In the year we shot, no one was thinking about keeping this stuff, but I tossed the arm into a box with some other leftover props, and then into my storage."
The plot of the second Terminator movie hinged on the technology left behind by a single arm and CPU from the previous Terminator causing Norwine to joke: "Who knows, the entire fate of humankind could rest on the right bidder buying this piece and keeping it safe from those who would use it for nefarious ends."
A killer collection of guitars owned by some of the great rock gods are the starring attraction in Christie's' Rock and Pop Memorabilia sale in London on June 24. While George Harrison's acoustic Yamaha guitar from 1994 signed by the Beatle is the priciest at an estimated $72,000 - $86,000, in aesthetic terms it's the least interesting lot. We much prefer the collection of instruments owned by members of The Who (above), in particular Pete Townshend and John Entwistle. The top pick is a custom made mahogany Gibson SG used by Townshend during the band's 1971 U.S. tour, estimated at $29,000 - $43,000. An newer acoustic guitar of his meanwhile is estimated at $8,500 - $11,500. Entwistle's Peter Cook Custom bass from the 1970s is estimated at $21,500 - $29,000, while his 1962 Fender Precision bass is estimated at $11,500 - $14,500. Eric Clapton's 1996 Fender Stratocaster 50th Anniversary edition with a gold-plated body is pricey at $29,000 - $43,000; much better deals are to be had with Marc Bolan of T.Rex's 1968 Fender Custom Telecaster and an early 1970s Gibson Les Paul owned by the Sex Pistols' Steve Jones, both estimated at $14,500 - $22,000.
A variety of rare Lincoln memorabilia is set to go up for auction on Friday June 11 in Cincinnati. Cowan's Auctions is selling 24 lots that include a Mathew Brady photograph of the president, pocket watches, Lincoln White House china and some of Mrs. Lincoln's famous jewels. Mrs. Lincoln was an early proponent of retail therapy and shopped lavishly both before and after her husband's death.
As the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports, auction also has a darker side, documents showing the course of Mary Todd Lincoln's arrest and commitment to a private sanitarium are up for sale for an estimated $8,000 to $10,000. Mrs. Lincoln's son believed that his mother was mentally ill and committed her against her will, creating a family rift that never healed. The photograph shown at right , signed by President Lincoln, is estimated at $10,000 to $20,000 but could go higher.
The sale will feature other historical artifacts related to the Civil War and the history of the American West. There are several images of Annie Oakley posing with her gun as well as many images of soldiers from both sides of the war.
UPDATE: The Lincoln picture sold for $33,000 while the three documents showing Mrs. Lincoln's arrest and commitment to a sanitarium sold for $32,000.
Flag Day is June 14, but don't even think of waving one of Jeff Bridgman's antique flags. Until recently, most people didn't consider antique flags folk art or even just plain art. But the public is waking up to the idea that these graphic, early American textiles are not just for history buffs. "I see a definite new trend, an increased awareness of antique flags as decorative objects," says Bridgman, both a collector and dealer. Today, flag design is set in stone, but in the 19th century there was no official design. Flags could have any shape, any pattern. As Bridgman's collection shows, they could be as fanciful or whimsical as the artist wished.
One of the coolest and most significant cultural icons of the 20th century, the 1964 Aston Martin DB5 driven by Sean Connery as James Bond in Goldfinger and Thunderball, will be put up for sale for the first time in history at RM Auctions' Automobiles of London event on October 27 where it is expected to fetch over $5 million. Offered by in association with Sotheby's, the famous Aston Martin is one of only two, and the sole remaining, of the original '007' DB5s. With its "rather interesting modifications" as originally conceived by Oscar-award-winning special effects expert John Stears, the car is factory-fitted with the full complement of operational 'Q-Branch' gadgets.
These include machine guns, bullet-proof shield, revolving number plates, tracking device, removable roof panel, oil slick sprayer, nail spreader and smoke screen, all controlled from factory installed toggles and switches hidden in the center arm-rest. Since 1969 the car has been in the collection of Jerry Lee, a radio broadcaster and philanthropist based in Philadelphia. The car is set to make its first 21st century public appearance at the Bond-themed Midsummer Classic / Thunderball concours and black-tie reception scheduled for June 26 at the Stoke Park Club located outside of London, familiar to Bond fans as the site of the first confrontation between 007 and Goldfinger.