A New York auction will be offering more than 300 items of movie memorabilia for sale in November, including the 1940 Buick Phaeton that Rick, Ilsa and Victor rode to the airport at the end of "Casablanca." Titled, "What Dreams Are Made Of: A Century of Movie Magic at Auction as Curated by TCM," the Nov. 25 Hollywood memorabilia auction will feature some of the most classic pieces in the history of film, from the silent movie era all the way up until modern blockbusters.
Bogart buffs aching with anticipation
"Casablanca" isn't the only Humphrey Bogart classic from which collectors can choose items. In fact, the highlight of the auction is the eponymous statute from his 1941 hit, "The Maltese Falcon." This particular lot is one of only two known cast-lead statues of the bird in existence, and it is considered a priceless piece of movie history – although it will probably end up going for a price in the seven figure range.
The Phaeton, which is one of the most iconic cars in film, is in prime working condition, according to the auctioneers, and that should help it go for a price that is expected to be north of $450,000.
"Seeing it in a catalog is not the same. I knew the car was here, and I walk in and it still takes your breath away a little bit," Turner Classic Movie host Ben Mankiewicz said of the Model 81C Aztec brown convertible Phaeton, in an interview with The Los Angeles Daily News.
Speaking of Mankiewicz …
Ben is the grandson of the great screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz, who co-wrote the script for "Citizen Kane" along with the film's director and star, Orson Welles. A working script from the movie will also be available. The younger Mankiewicz believes it's a third final version, and it comes without a screenwriter credit for either of the two men who produced it. Nonetheless, it's still an exceptional item, and one that anyone who appreciates the film will surely find intriguing.
More screen gems
Of course, with a distinguished sponsor like TCM behind it, and more than 300 lots up for grabs, the movie memorabilia auction has plenty of other great finds in its inventory. Among them are some of Harrison Ford's whips from the "Indiana Jones" series and a cast of Han Solo's carbonite-frozen face from "The Empire Strikes Back."
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