Big Drops for Props: The Priciest Movie Memorabilia Sold Recently
Humphrey Bogart in The Maltese Falcon (Photo Credit: Everett)
Like, really serious.
The latest bit of Hollywood history to be sold at a sky-high price is the title statue featured in "The Maltese Falcon" (1941), John Huston's classic noir crime drama starring Humphrey Bogart, Mary Astor and Peter Lorre. The statue, which was owned by an unidentified California collector who acquired it in a private sale in the 1980s, and which was one of two used in the film, was sold in an auction conducted by Bonhams in New York in conjunction with Turner Classic Movies to an undisclosed buyer for a whopping $4,085,000.
That's a lot, especially when you consider that the film itself cost around $375,000 to produce (true, that's in 1941 dollars, but still).
In honor of the "black figure of a bird" getting a new and apparently considerably well-off owner, we've gathered a list of some of the most expensive movie memorabilia from over the years. Hey, why open a hospital in a starving country when you can own a "Metropolis" poster?
10. "Blade Runner" Gun: $270,000
The futuristic pistol wielded by Deckard (Harrison Ford) gets at least one loving close-up in the classic sci-fi film noir, and it's that money shot that probably inspired someone to go as high as $270,000 in a 2009 auction for the prop. That's considerably higher than the pre-auction estimate of $100,000 to $150,000 — and enough for at least starting funds for the next time Ridley Scott feels like re-editing the 1982 film yet again.
9. "Star Wars" Camera: $625,000
The highest-ever bid for a "Star Wars"-related piece of memorabilia (so far) wasn't for a lightsaber or a wampa suit but for something decidedly more behind-the-scenes. The Panavision PSR 35mm camera used to film "Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope" (1977) was sold in 2011 to an undisclosed buyer for $625,000 — more than three times its $200,000 estimate and a new record for both "Star Wars" memorabilia and vintage Hollywood film cameras sold at auction. Oh, and get this: the camera still worked.
The Lotus Espirit from The Spy Who Loved Me (Credit: Everett Collection)
8. James Bond Lotus Esprit Submarine: $860,000