Willy Wonka Auction: Anyone Wanna Buy Gene Wilder's Costume?
The auction-happy crew at Profiles in History, which has previously unloaded Hollywood treasures ranging from Dorothy's ruby slippers to the Dude's sweater from The Big Lebowski, has got the 10-year-old in you right where they want it: Prepare yourself for the most comprehensive auction of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory memorabilia to date, featuring costumes, props and one of only two known Everlasting Gobstoppers in existence. Also: They will cost you.
Via a press release just in from PiH:
First up and most significantly is the Gene Wilder "Willy Wonka" signature costume. The costume consists of flamboyant purple velvet frock coat, wool & camelhair slacks, off-white shirt, distinctive purple & violet lamé vest with floral design and satin bow tie. Originally obtained from Michael D. Beinner, Director of Field Advertising and Publicity for Paramount Pictures who was gifted the costume following its promotional tour of several key cities around the U.S. Without doubt, one of the most iconic and instantly recognizable costumes in the history of film. It is estimated to fetch $80,000 – $120,000.
Also up for auction are three iconic items from the collection of Julie Dawn Cole, who played “Veruca Salt.” First is an original screen-used Everlasting Gobstopper, one of only two known to exist. It comes with a notarized copy of a letter from Ms. Cole stating (in part), “The Everlasting Gobstopper was used in the Inventing Room Scene. Mr. Wonka gives each of the children one Everlasting Gobstopper each. Typically Veruca tries to wangle another one, if only she had succeeded! But at least I was allowed to keep this one.” It is expected to fetch $20,000 – $30,000.
You can also own the Golden Egg, screen used by Julie Dawn Cole during the "I Want it Now," musical number. The egg comes with a notarized copy of a letter from Ms. Cole stating (in part), “The Filming of this [Golden Egg] scene and Veruca’s demise was actually filmed on my 13th birthday. The egg was presented to me at the end of the day’s shoot as a birthday present.” The egg is fashioned from polystyrene foam painted gold and is expected to fetch $20,000 – $30,000.
And there's more, all going on the block in July. Sadly, no Oompa Loompas are to be found on the list (though one of those costumes is up for sale as well, a representative notes), and the beheaded chicken from the psychedelic-tunnel-trip montage doesn't come with a Certificate of Authenticity, so caveat emptor, etc.