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Showbiz Auction Eyes $150,000 for Superman Suit
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – When Superman donned his red cape in the 1950s, he ran faster than a speeding bullet and was able to leap tall buildings with a single bound, but not even he could have known that his S-emblazoned outfit might fetch $150,000 at auction.
Los Angeles-based Profiles in History opens the bidding in an auction of Hollywood memorabilia on Thursday with some 360 items for sale from the Superman costume George Reeves wore in the 1950s TV show of the same name to the gloves Arnold Schwarzenegger used in “Terminator 2: Judgment Day.”
While the auction features mostly items from science fiction movies and television shows, one piece up for grabs is Mel Brooks’ first writing screenplay of the 1968 film “The Producers,” an adaptation of which is now a hit stage play. It is expected to fetch between $8,000 and $10,000.
The Superman costume is the auction’s centerpiece because it is one of only two authentic George Reeves Superman suits known to exist, said Profiles’ Chief Executive Joseph Maddalena.
“I can’t think of a more important TV show costume,” said Maddalena, adding he expects the auction to bring in around $1 million in total with the costume going for about $150,000.
Maddalena said collecting show business material has become increasingly popular because it is more affordable than antiques and fine art.
Collecting goes in waves and currently Hollywood’s sci-fi material is hot, he said. Last year, Profiles auctioned Captain Kirk’s Command Chair from the “Star Trek” TV series for $306,000.
Authenticating pieces is made easier by the fact that many people who made or wore them are living. “The industry kind of polices me, and I work within the industry. If the material wasn’t real, they would hang me,” he said.
Or perhaps they would send Superman to do the job.
Bids can be made in person at Profiles in History’s Beverly Hills office or online at eBay live auctions.