Bonhams : Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane

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Lot 306
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane

Sold for US$ 149,000 inc. premium
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
American Victorian sled, hardwood with hand-forged metal runners and rope tie, with original paint and stenciling, built for R.H. Webb, Chester, CT, 1840 (hand-painted to underside), with "Rosebud" added to seat, some wear, loss to seat and paint, foot brace possibly replaced.
Provenance: presented to screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz at the conclusion of the filming of Citizen Kane (1941); in the possession of the Mankiewicz family from that time to the present.
Exhibition history: on loan to the Debbie Reynolds Museum, Las Vegas, NV, from 1995-c.1998.
Herman Mankiewicz was one of the most prolific and important screenwriters of the 1920s-1940s. Though uncredited in the final film, he is the writer who came up with the idea of the black-and-white Kansas sequences for The Wizard of Oz. And of course, he is best remembered for his work on the screenplay of Citizen Kane, for which he and Orson Welles both won Academy Awards®. Mankiewicz had long had the idea for a film in which the story of a man's life is told through different narrators, and when he and Welles began to collaborate, his intimate knowledge of William Randolph Hearst's inner circle (he had often been a guest at San Simeon and was very close to Marion's niece, Charles Lederer) proved invaluable.
Mankiewicz is also credited with coming up with the central plot device: the search for the meaning of "Rosebud" (spoiler alert: it's Kane's boyhood sled). As a boy, Mankiewicz received a long-promised bicycle, which brought all the anticipation of freedom and independence that children crave. One day, against his mother's wishes, he hopped on his bike, snuck off to the Wilkes-Barre Public Library, and spent the afternoon reading among the stacks. When he emerged, his bike was gone—stolen. His father never bought him another one, and his mother rebuffed his pleas, saying the loss was Herman's own fault.
According to Mankiewicz family lore, this sled was given to Herman Mankiewicz by either Ben Hecht or (more likely) Kane producer John Houseman, at the conclusion of principle photography on the film. It has been a treasured heirloom in the Mankiewicz family ever since.

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of this lot will be donated to the Writer's Guild Foundation.
39 x 16 x 14 in.
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Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
Screenwriter Herman Mankiewicz's "Rosebud" sled, gifted to him at the conclusion of principal photography for Citizen Kane
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