Rare and early concept designs and models for Walt Disney World on the auction block

Entertainment Memorabilia including Animation Art
18 Nov 2012
Los Angeles

Los Angeles – Bonhams is pleased to announce the November 18 auction of Entertainment Memorabilia in Los Angeles, where early designs, props, drawings and models from Walt Disney World will be featured. Located in Lake Buena Vista, FL, the celebrated park is one of the world's most visited thematic attractions. Walt Disney World opened in 1971 and covers approximately 30,000 acres, including four theme parks, two water parks and twenty four resorts.

Highlights related to Walt Disney World will include a rare, large concept map, depicting an aerial view of the park that includes several attractions never built (est. $1,000-1,500); a group of designs for stores and attractions that are now closed (est. $1,000-1,500); a group of designs for Frontierland Shootin' Arcade modelled on an 1850 shootout in Tombstone, AZ (est. $1,000-1,500); a group of original Disneyland plans annotated in red ink, likely used in the design process for Walt Disney World's Main Street U.S.A. (est. $800-1,200); a partial model for the "It's a Small World" attraction (est. $800-1,200) and a life-size John F. Kennedy sculpture ($1,200-1,800). This piece was likely a model for the animatronic figure of the former President that can be found in The Hall of Presidents, one of the park's original attractions which is still open today.

Additional items of note related to Walt Disney, Disney films and Disneyland in California include a screen used sleigh prop from "The Nightmare Before Christmas," 1993, (est. $12,000 - 16,000); a Walt Disney typed Christmas greetings letter to child star Bobby Driscoll who provided the voice of Peter Pan in the 1953 Disney animated film (est. $4,000-6,000); early Disneyland attraction posters from Jungle River and the Haunted Mansion, among others (estimates range from $500-1,200) and a rare "Step Right Up Mr. Exhibitor and See Dumbo!" exhibitor's poster for the 1941 classic, together with a selection of black and white promotional photographs from the film (est. $500-700).

Bonhams is also pleased to offer property from celebrated commercial artist, Disney animator, caricature artist and director, Thornton Hee, commonly known as "T. Hee." The collection includes several lots of original graphite on paper storyboard drawings from "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," 1937 (estimates range from $600-900 per lot); a signed black and white photograph of Disney employees, animators and artists from 1968 (est. $200-300); a collection of 20 humorous drawings of T. Hee (est. $300-400) and several groups of caricature drawings from 1930s-1940s of Disney employees such as Roy Disney, Earl Hurd (inventor of the "animation cel"), Art Babbitt (creator of Goofy), Bill Tytla (animator of the Chernabog character from "Fantasia") and Otto Englander (writer for "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," "Dumbo," "Pinocchio" and "Fantasia"), plus many more animators and artists from Disney (estimates for each group range from $300-600).

The illustrated auction catalogue is available online at www.bonhams.com/20085 in the weeks preceding the sale and Los Angeles previews.

Preview: November 16-17, Los Angeles

Auction: November 18, Los Angeles


Bonhams, founded in 1793, is one of the world's largest auctioneers of fine art and antiques. The present company was formed by the merger in November 2001 of Bonhams & Brooks and Phillips Son & Neale. In August 2002, the company acquired Butterfields, the principal firm of auctioneers on the West Coast of America. Today, Bonhams offers more sales than any of its rivals, through two major salerooms in London: New Bond Street and Knightsbridge; and a further three in the UK regions and Scotland. Sales are also held in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Carmel, New York and Connecticut in the USA; and Germany, France, Monaco, Hong Kong and Australia. Bonhams has a worldwide network of offices and regional representatives in 25 countries offering sales advice and valuation services in 60 specialist areas. For a full listing of upcoming sales, plus details of Bonhams specialist departments go to www.bonhams.com

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