Entertainment memorabilia auction to present items from Milton Berle, the Rat Pack and Marylin Monroe

5 May 2013, Entertainment Memorabilia including Animation Art
Entertainment Memorabilia including Animation Art

Entertainment memorabilia auction to present items from Milton Berle, the Rat Pack and Marylin Monroe

5 May 2013, Entertainment Memorabilia including Animation Art

Los Angeles—Bonhams is pleased to announce its auction of Entertainment Memorabilia including Animation Art, to be held May 5 in Los Angeles, featuring property from the Estate of Milton Berle. The sale will also offer items relating to Frank Sinatra, the Rat Pack and Marilyn Monroe; property from the Estate of Larry Hagman (see separate release); music memorabilia; and animation art, including property from the Estate of animator T. Hee.

Items on offer from the Estate of comedian, actor and entertainer Milton Berle will include Berle's vast library of original working scripts from more than 85 years in show business, spanning vaudeville, radio, television and film (est. $80,000-100,000) and his carefully-curated private "joke file" (est. $10,000-15,000). There will also be a signed letter from John F. Kennedy to Milton Berle (est. $1,500-2,000); a signed and inscribed photograph of Kennedy with Jackie (est. $1,500-2,000); and a sterling silver cigarette case given to Milton Berle by Frank Sinatra on the occasion of President Kennedy's Inauguration (est. $2,500-3,500). Please see separate press release for more details.

According to Catherine Williamson, Director of Entertainment Memorabilia, "Both collectors and institutions will be amazed by the depth and breadth of Berle's archive—a comprehensive history of American comedy in the 20th century."

Items relating to Frank Sinatra and the Rat Pack will also be featured, including property from the Estate of Nathan "Sonny" Golden, Sinatra's longtime business manager. Featured lots from Golden's collection include an original oil painting by Ol' Blue Eyes (est. 15,000-20,000) and a copy of A Man and His Art, inscribed by Sinatra (est. $300-500). In addition, there will be items relating to Marilyn Monroe, including a handwritten working arranger's score from "I Wanna Be Loved by You," memorably sung by Monroe in Some Like It Hot (est. $800-1,200); a copy of Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, inscribed by the actress (est. $3,000-5,000); and a class photograph from Ralph Waldo Emerson Junior High School featuring a 15-year-old Monroe, inscribed and signed by her to a classmate (est. $7,000-9,000).

The auction also features a strong selection of material relating to some of the most influential directors of the 20th century, including a dress from Hitchcock's Shadow of a Doubt (est. $2,000-3,000); a 16mm Éclair NPR camera used by George Lucas (est. $5,000-7,000); a viewfinder used by Francis Ford Coppola during the filming of Apocalypse Now (est. $1,000-1,500); and a collection of letters and a photograph by Stanley Kubrick (est. $5,000-7,000).

For music lovers, the sale offers an original costume design by Bill Belew for Elvis Presley's famous black leather jumpsuit worn on the '68 Special (est. $3,000-5,000); a first state Beatles "Butcher cover" album (est. $6,000-8,000); an original painting by Frank Zappa (est. $5,000-7,000); an Eric Clapton Signature "Crossroads" Fender Stratocaster and '57 Twin Amp (est. $10,000-15,000); and a pair of drawings by Michael Jackson (estimated at $2,000-3,000 each), among other highlights.

Our animation offerings include rare Disneyland attraction posters for Space Station X-1 (est. $1,000-1,500), Frontierland (est. $800-1,200), the Sailing Ship Columbia (est. $700-900) and the Country Bear Jamboree (est. $400-600); and original celluloids from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (estimated at $800-1,200, $600-800 and $400-600, respectively), Pinocchio (estimated at $1,200-1,600 and $2,000-3,000, respectively), Fantasia (est. $1,000-1,500) and Mary Poppins (est. $600-800). We are also pleased to offer part II of Property from the Estate of T. Hee (Thornton Hee), notable American animator, director and teacher, known for directing the "Dance of the Hours" sequence in Disney's Fantasia. Among offerings from the Estate are several watercolor and cut paper collage caricatures of celebrities, including that of the Marx Brothers (est. $500-700), Shirley Temple (est. $300-400) and Marion Davies (est. $300-400), as well as original caricatures of other Disney animators and T. Hee's own personal collection of Disney ephemera and memorabilia (est. $600-800).

The illustrated auction catalog for this sale will be available online for review and purchase at bonhams.com in the weeks preceding the sale.


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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