These Iconic Props and Costumes Will Go Down in History as the Most Expensive Movie Memorabilia Ever Sold

Sun Feb 28 2021

No movie would be complete without actors, costumes, and props. And while we can stalk our favorite actors on social media and stick their posters up on our walls, how are we supposed to remember the amazing costumes and props from these iconic films? Sure, we could watch it over and over again in order to make our own replicas – but ain’t nobody got time for that.

For the die-hard movie fans of the world, there’s only one way to truly appreciate the props and costumes of Hollywood. And that’s to buy the original pieces of memorabilia used in the movie itself. But you probably don’t need us to tell you that these original, one-of-a-kind pieces aren’t exactly cheap. At Hype Galore, we’ve found the most expensive movie props ever sold, and some of these prices will blow your mind…

Judy Garland’s Dorothy Dress Found Its Way Home After Its New Owner Paid $1.56 Million for It in 2015

Judy Garland realized that she wasn’t in Kansas anymore when she donned her blue and white gingham dress for The Wizard of Oz. While this was a simple costume, it’s since become one of the most recognizable dresses out there. Because of this, movie buffs have been trying to get their hands on one of the ten dresses worn by the actress for decades.

In 2015, two of these ten dresses made their way to auction – and it became a film lovers’ frenzy. Out of the two, one particular dress caught the attention of die-hard memorabilia lovers due to the fact that it had a sweat stain on the neck. Eager to take this dress and the sweat stain home to their collection, one buyer was willing to shell out $1.56 million.

A Muggle Bought an Original Harry Potter Acceptance Letter for $9,900 in 2017

The Harry Potter film franchise has become a part of so many people’s lives, and many kids grew up wishing their Hogwarts acceptance letter would arrive in the mail. Of course, we all know that Harry Potter himself received countless letters – and this meant that the prop department for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was pretty busy.

Over the years, many of the original acceptance letters used within the first film have become available at auction. And as you can imagine, muggles have been willing to spend as much money as they can to get their hands on one. In 2017, one budding witch or wizard managed to take home their letter for $9,900.

Audrey Hepburn’s My Fair Lady Ascot Dress Was Sold for a Very Fair Price of $3.7 Million In 2011

Released in 1964, My Fair Lady quickly became one of Audrey Hepburn’s most iconic roles. And while the storyline caught everyone’s attention, it was the “Ascot Dress” that really got eyebrows wagging. After all, it was stunning. This white lace dress and a matching hat were designed by Cecil Beaton, and this costume actually won him an Academy Award.

So, you can probably understand why this original dress would sell for so much. There was a huge amount of interest from fashion collectors, art collectors, and movie fans alike when this dress made its way to auction in 2011. But in the end, a bid worth an incredible $3.7 million was the overall winner.

Harrison Ford’s Famous Fedora From Raiders of the Lost Ark Was Whipped up for $524,000 in 2018

The Indiana Jones film series is one that we all love to watch. As the movies go on and the sequels keep coming, they just get better and better – which is pretty rare in the world of cinema. The franchise owes much of its success to the one and only Harrison Ford, who dons his famous fedora every time he steps into the boots of Indy.

Normally, Ford bags himself a new hat for each movie – and in 2018, the hat he wore while filming Raiders of the Lost Ark made its way to auction in London. Not only was this the hat that sat atop Harrison’s head, but it also features his signature and was actually designed by Steven Spielberg, George Lucas, and Deborah Nadoolman Landis. It’s no wonder it sold for $524,000.

Kate Winslet’s Red Dress From Titanic Was Sold for a Titanic Amount of $330,000 in 2012

While we all know that Kate Winslet has starred in more movies than we could count, there’s something about her role in Titanic that we just can’t forget. Her portrayal of Rose DeWitt Bukater made us feel all kinds of emotions, and we felt particularly upset when she tried to jump off the edge of the boat – before Jack whisked in to save her.

During this scene, Kate wore her so-called “jump dress” that features beautiful red fabric and stunning beaded detailing. In 2012, this exact same dress made its way to auction, and while we don’t know anything about the person who bought it, we do know that they had $330,000 to spare.

Luke Skywalker’s Original Lightsaber From Star Wars: A New Hope Lit up the Eyes of a Buyer Who Bought It for $240,000 in 2008

When you think of the Star Wars franchise, it’s hard to imagine these movies without lightsabers. After all, they’re the props that fans and non-fans alike associate with these epic movies. And as technology has improved, these lightsabers have changed year upon year. But back in the ’70s and ’80s when A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back came out, these props were a little more basic – making them even more iconic.

When Mark Hamill donned his Jedi robes to become Luke Skywalker in these two movies, his lightsaber was made from a wooden pole painted with special projection paint and the tube of an old camera. Amazingly, it was perfectly preserved for decades before it finally went to auction in 2008. And we bet one Star Wars superfan was over the moon to bag this iconic prop for just $240,000.

A Private Buyer Had a Need for Speed and Spent $4.2 Million on Goldfinger‘s Aston Martin in 2010

When you think of James Bond, you probably think of slow-mo walks out of the ocean, martinis that are shaken and not stirred, and some of the most sophisticated cars the motor world has to offer. And every single James Bond actor has had the chance to drive these bad boys, including Sean Connery in Goldfinger.

Two Aston Martin DB5’s were given to the Goldfinger production team in 1964. One was used for all of the special effects and fancy filmmaking, while the other was used as the “road car” – and was the one that Connery actually drove. That particular road car was sold at auction in 2010 for an incredible $4.6 million to one lucky owner, and we bet they’re pretty proud of their purchase.

Marilyn Monroe’s Dress From The Seven Year Itch Blew up at Auction in 2011 and Sold for $4.6 Million

Marilyn Monroe will forever be remembered as one of the most legendary actresses of all time, and while she’s sadly no longer around, memorabilia from her acting days still is. In fact, one of her most famous movie costumes of all time has since gone on to become one of the most expensive movie costumes ever sold. Remember that scene in The Seven Year Itch?

When Marilyn stood over the vent in her gorgeous white dress, she probably had no idea that it would become one of the most recognizable pop culture references ever. But it took the world by storm, and in 2011 that same dress Marilyn wore was put up for auction in Los Angeles. The dress sold for a whopping $4.6 million, but it’s important to note that the dress was sold as part of a collection.

The Car From Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Was Sold in All of Its Colorful Glory for $805,000 in 2012

Starring the ever-famous musical legend, Dick Van Dyke, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang has brought us a huge amount of love and laughter over the years. And while it’s also given us extremely unrealistic expectations for our vehicles, that’s not to say that this flying car doesn’t exist. In fact, six of these cars were made to be used during filming.

What you might not realize about these six cars, though, is that only one of them was a functioning road car. And it even had a registration plate named ‘GEN 11’. The original Chitty Chitty Bang Bang was bought in 2011 at auction by a name that you might actually recognize, too! British radio DJ Chris Evans decided to shell out $804,000 for this road-legal car, although he did later sell it as part of a 13-car collection.

Someone Bravely Bought the Cowardly Lion Costume From The Wizard of Oz for $3 Million in 2014

The Wizard of Oz brought some of the most amazing props into our lives. And what’s so amazing about these items is that they were made during a time when special effects and elaborate costumes were a fairly new addition to Hollywood. This was the movie that sparked the prop revolution, and this can truly be seen within the Cowardly Lion costume worn by Bert Lahr.

To make this costume seem realistic, it was made from real lion hides. Not only was this incredibly hot for the actor to wear under the bright lights of the studio, but it was also ridiculously heavy! It weighed a whopping 60 pounds, and the exact costume that Bert wore – complete with a sculpted mask of his son’s face – was sold at auction in 2014 for a massive $3 million. How crazy is that?

Charlie Chaplin’s Cane Silently Sold at Auction for $62,500 in 2013

Silent, black-and-white movies are largely a thing of the past, but that doesn’t mean that we’ve forgotten about Charlie Chaplin. This actor took the silent movie world by storm over the course of his career, and of course, “The Tramp” wouldn’t be seen on screen without his cane, his small little mustache, and his bowler hat.

Chaplin used this particular cane while filming Modern Times, and his fans couldn’t believe their eyes when they saw it up for auction in 2013. They quickly made their way to the auction house and dropped $350,000 in one hit to make it theirs. It was certainly a successful – and expensive – shopping spree.

The Submarine Car From The Spy Who Loved Me Was Bought by a Very Famous Face for $989,000 in 2013

Cars that feature in the James Bond movies are always going to be popular, but what about submarine cars? Well, it seems as though they’re even more popular. The Lotus Espirit submarine car – fondly given the nickname of Wet Nellie – was custom-built for the 1977 movie, The Spy Who Loved Me. And it’s fair to say that it got many people’s tails wagging.

In fact, it caught the attention of billionaire tech mogul Elon Musk when it made its way to auction in 2013. Not only is Elon a huge fan of cars and exciting technology as a whole, but apparently he’s also a huge James Bond nerd. So, he had no problem when it came to drawing out $989,000 to call this submarine car his own.

Play It, Sam! The Piano From Casablanca Was Picked up by a Movie Lover for an Incredible $3.4 Million in 2014

When Ingrid Bergman delivered the line “Play it, Sam” she secured one of Hollywood’s most iconic movie moments. After all, the piano scene in Rick’s Café Américain made Casablanca the legendary movie it is today. For years, this piano was coveted by movie fans across the globe. And in 2014, they were given the chance to take it home with them.

But it’s important to know that this movie prop isn’t actually a working piano. The piano used in the movie only has 58 keys – meaning it has 30 less than a normal piano. However, we have a feeling that whoever snapped it up for $3.4 million in 2014 didn’t really care about whether they could play it or not.

John Travolta’s Saturday Night Fever Suit Stayed Alive and Was Bought for $1.2 Million in 2017

With his singing, dancing, and acting talent, John Travolta made waves when he was younger in movies such as Grease and Saturday Night Fever. In both of these movies, he wore iconic costumes that have been replicated over time – and Saturday Night Fever featured a white suit with a black shirt. With flared pants, of course.

This suit not only makes us think of the Bee Gee’s, but it also makes us think of how good the movie is – and we’re not the only ones. Fans of Saturday Night Fever made their way to the auction room in 2017, and one lucky buyer managed to walk away with this suit under their arms. It did cost them a whopping $1.7 million, though.

One Lucky Buyer Sleeps Soundly at Night After Spending $65,000 on a Hypersleep Chamber From Aliens in 2012

James Cameron has brought us countless blockbusters, but some would say that Aliens has knocked all of the others out of the park. While this movie wouldn’t be complete without Sigourney Weaver, the props used have also made the movie believable. Well, as believable as a sci-fi movie about aliens can be. One of the most iconic props from the movie is the hypersleep chamber.

There were a huge number of these hypersleep chambers made for filming, and a few of them have made their way into the public market over the years. This was the case in 2012 when one of the hypersleep props was snapped up by a film buff for $65,000. We just wonder whether they actually sleep in it?

The Tag Heuer Watch From Le Mans Was Ahead of Its Time and Sold for $799,500 in 2012

Over the course of Steve McQueen’s life, he became known as the ultimate Hollywood racer. He became the “King of Cool” and perhaps one of his best-loved performances came in 1971 when he starred in Le Mans. Memorabilia from this iconic movie has become hugely expensive over the years, and this has been the case for the Tag Heuer ‘Monaco’ watch McQueen wore as Michael Delaney.

It’s been noted that McQueen wore two of these watches over the course of filming, and while one of them aged over time, the other was perfectly preserved and was kept in pristine condition over the years. Because of this, it was able to rack up a sale price of $799,500 at auction back in 2012.

The Force Was With an Anonymous Buyer When They Bought a Mask From The Empire Strikes Back for $900,000 in 2019

Star Wars is arguably one of the most famous movie franchises out there, and because of that, there are fans across the globe who watch them religiously. What’s more, this franchise has fans that are willing to shell out their life savings on memorabilia from their favorite movie within the series. For some, it’s Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back.

In 2019, a Los Angeles auction saw numerous props and costumes from this particular movie go up for sale. And, of course, Star Wars fans swarmed in their hundreds to bid on these items. One of the most expensive purchases of the day went to an anonymous buyer, who paid $900,000 for a Darth Vader fiberglass mask from the movie. Amazingly, experts only expected it to sell for $500,000.

These Sound of Music Costumes Were a Few of This Buyers’ Favorite Things So They Sold for $1.56 Million in 2014

Most people know at least one of the songs from The Sound of Music, and it’s often hard to get them out of your head. After all, the songs, the storyline, and the actors in this movie have all gone down in history as being some of the best. But what you might not have realized is that their costumes have also become famous.

In 2014, various costumes from the movie made their way into the Hollywood memorabilia auction. These included the costumes the children wore during the “whistling” scene and the “Do-Re-Me” costumes worn by Julie Andrews and the young actors. The latter costumes were snapped up by a willing buyer for a humungous $1.56 million.

Great Scott! A DeLorean From Back To the Future Sold for $541,000 in 2011

Let’s be honest; Back to the Future is one of the most legendary movie franchises out there. And while the storyline was epic, it would have been nothing without Doc and his DeLorean. What you might not know about this epic, time-turning prop, though, is that these films don’t feature the same car. In fact, six DeLorean DMC-12’s were used over the course of all three movies.

Two of these are now on show for movie lovers to gawp over at Universal Studios Orlando and Hollywood, and another was completely refurbished a decade ago. After restoring it to its former glory, the private owner decided to sell it at auction… and it sold for an incredible $541,000. Amazingly, a portion of that sale price was donated to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to honor the Back to the Future icon.

The T-300 Cyborg Skeleton From Terminator 2 Came Back and Sold for $488,750 in 2007

While most people will agree that Terminator 2: Judgment Day suffered from the sequel curse that meant fans just couldn’t love it as much as the first movie, this film did introduce us to a T-300 Cyborg. Of course, we knew that this cyborg was actually just Arnold Schwarzenegger in disguise, but this wasn’t all CGI and post-production special effects.

To create the T-300, the prop department actually made a full-scale cyborg skeleton to render the actor on screen. This skeleton has been perfectly preserved since the film’s 1991 release and it even made its way to auction in 2007 – with the light-up red eyes and all. In the end, it sold for $488,750, which is pretty impressive.

A Private Buyer Was Jumping for Joy When They Bought Indiana Jones‘ Bullwhip for $216,000 in 2014

There are certain props that you think of when you think of the Indiana Jones movies, right? For starters, there’s the hat. Then there’s the vest jacket. And then there’s the bullwhip. Amazingly, Harrison Ford used the same bullwhip for Raiders of the Lost Ark, The Temple of Doom, and The Last Crusade! It was 8ft long and made entirely out of kangaroo hide.

And considering they now own a bit of kangaroo, we can only assume that the person who bought this bullwhip at auction in 2014 was jumping for joy when it passed into their hands. After all, this was the whip that Indy used to get himself out of some seriously sticky situations. All the new owner had to do was hand over $216,000.

An Original King Kong Armature Dominated an Auction in 2009 and Sold for $200,305

Although there have been many attempts to recreate this movie, nothing will come close to the original 1933 King Kong. When you think about it, this movie was a true feat of cinematic engineering and was a major player in the pre-Code era of Hollywood. Amazingly, this stop-motion movie used just a small 22-inch high armature to create King Kong himself.

While it may have been small, this armature provided the basis for the monster that terrorized New York City, and this same original armature went up for sale in 2009. Although it’s not known who the private buyer was, we do know that they were willing to pay out $200,305 to call this priceless piece of movie memorabilia their own.

The Maltese Falcon‘s Infamous Statuette Was Finally Discovered and Sold at Auction in 2013 for $4.1 Million

Humphrey Bogart took on countless characters over the course of his lifetime, but perhaps one of his most famous was Detective Sam Spade in The Maltese Falcon. This movie followed the detective as he tried to find the mysterious statuette – and it seems as though fans of the movie have tried to follow suit ever since. In fact, one buyer even shelled out $4.1 million to get his hands on it.

This statuette sold in 2013, and while you may think this was expensive, it was well worth it. Over the years, many fake statues have come to light, with opportunists trying to sell their plaster versions for just as much money. However, there’s a big difference between the 45-pound prop used in the film and a 5-pound plaster version. And this buyer wanted the real deal.

The Seller of Audrey Hepburn’s Little Black Dress Could Definitely Afford Breakfast at Tiffany’s After It Sold for $807,000 in 2006

In 1961, the world was graced with Breakfast at Tiffany’s – an iconic movie that featured an even more iconic actress. Over the years, many people have emptied their bank account to eat their own breakfast at this expensive store in an attempt to be just like Holly Golightly. But that’s nothing compared to how much one lucky buyer spent on the dress Audrey Hepburn wore in the movie…

Givenchy made three identical versions of these stunning little black dresses for the movie, and two of them now stand behind protective glass. One can be found in Givenchy’s archive, while the other lives in Madrid’s costume museum. The third dress, however, was sold at auction for an incredible $807,000 back in 2006. This was way above the expected selling price, as experts were only predicting around $138,000 for it.

A Golden Ticket From Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory Won Over a Buyer Who Paid $34,000 for It in 2012

When Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory came out in 1971, all anyone could think about was where they could get their hands on a golden ticket. Today, fans still open their Wonka Bars in the hope they’ll see that speck of gold – but only a few people have been able to hold a real golden ticket in their hands.

In 2012, one of the original golden tickets used within the actual movie made its way to auction. And naturally, movie buffs from across the world wanted to get their hands on it. While buying this golden ticket didn’t guarantee entry into the chocolate factory, that didn’t stop one buyer from paying $34,000 for it.

Forbidden Planet‘s Robby the Robot Wasn’t Forbidden From the Auction Room in 2017 and Sold for $5.37 million

The world of science fiction wouldn’t be the world it is today without the influence of Robby the Robot. After making his debut in 1956’s Forbidden Planet, he was later used in numerous other sci-fi movies and television shows. Yes, you would have seen him in The Twilight Zone, The Addams Family, Mork and Mindy, Lost In Space, and so much more than Robby even has his own Wikipedia page.

Because this robot has become a prop legend, it should probably come as no surprise to learn that people are willing to pay the big bucks for him. In fact, in 2017 he became the most expensive movie prop ever sold! One lucky buyer snapped him up at $5.37 million in New York – which is a heck of a lot of money for a robot.

One Buyer Got To Take the Voyage of a Lifetime When Bought the Star Trek Chair for $305,000 in 2002

Whether you watched the movies or the TV series, there’s no doubt about the fact that Star Trek has become a cult classic. And today, William Shatner is still remembered for his role as Captain Kirk – the man who sat in the famous chair. This chair was the ultimate symbol of power within the franchise, so it’s no wonder it sold for a hefty price.

It’s actually been reported that the original chair used within the shows and movies was actually bought in 2002 – although many replicas and models can be found in sci-fi and pop culture museums across the globe. When the original was sold, though, it was snapped up for a staggering $305,000.

A Buyer Clicked Their Heels and Paid $660,000 for the Ruby Slippers From The Wizard of Oz in 2000

The Wizard of Oz may have been released 82 years ago, but that doesn’t mean that it’s any less popular now than when it was released in 1939. In fact, it’s become a classic movie that families love to watch together, and it’s become a movie that’s close to many people’s hearts. Because of this, there are die-hard fans out there who are willing to pay the big bucks for iconic memorabilia.

One of the most recognizable props from this movie is Dorothy’s ruby slippers. While countless pairs were made for Judy Garland to wear during filming, only four are known to survive today – with one pair residing at the Smithsonian Musem, and another having been stolen back in 2005. In 2000, the third pair of ruby slippers wound their way to auction and ultimately sold for $666,000.

Gene Wilder’s Purple Outfit From Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory Was Sold-Doo-Be-Doo for a Sweet $73,800 in 2012

While the modern reimagining of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory saw Johnny Depp show off his quirky talent, nobody could compare to Gene Wilder in the original movie, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. This actor somersaulted into our hearts just as he did his own chocolate factory, and made sure that he was wearing his most awesome purple coat with a cane and top hat.

This costume was a Hollywood marvel and has since become one of the most iconic outfits out there. Because of this, it might not surprise you to learn that it was snapped up pretty quickly – and for a huge price – when it was put up for auction in 2012. In fact, one lucky film buff probably felt like they’d won the golden ticket when they shelled out $73,800 to add it to their closet.