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Published On: Tue, Nov 26th, 2013

‘Maltese Falcon’ prop sells for over $4 million at auction

A statue of the bird from the classic film The Maltese Falcon sold for over $4 million at a movie memorabilia auction Monday.

Bonhams auction house reports that the final price for the statuette, which stands only one foot tall, was $$4,085,000.

A plaster Maltese Falcon prop used in "The Maltese Falcon" (1941). The model for the prop (known as "Falcon prop #6") was sculpted by artist Fred Sexton for his friend, director John Huston. Sexton inscribed his initials on the plaster prop. photo by Hank Risan via wikimedia commons

A plaster Maltese Falcon prop used in “The Maltese Falcon” (1941). The model for the prop (known as “Falcon prop #6”) was sculpted by artist Fred Sexton for his friend, director John Huston. Sexton inscribed his initials on the plaster prop. photo by Hank Risan via wikimedia commons

There were only two of the lead falcons created for John Huston’s 1941 thriller, but only one Warner Bros claims actually appeared in the film.

 A statuette of a bird featured in the classic 1941 detective thriller “The Maltese Falcon” sold for more than $4 million at auction Monday.

It ranks with the most expensive pieces of movie and TV memorabilia ever sold at auction. It trails the original Batmobile No. 1 from the 1960s TV show that sold for $4.6 million and the Aston Martin driven by Sean Connery in Goldfinger that sold for $4.1 million.

The next group begins with the $2 million paid for a pair of ruby slippers worn by Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz or the $576,000 paid for an Enterprise model used in Star Trek.

The statuette has the Warner Bros. inventory number etched into the base and bears the name of the movie. The figure has a bent right tail feather, damage incurred during filming, Bonhams said.

Actress Lee Patrick, who played Spade’s secretary, Effie, dropped it while handing it to Bogart.

The statuette’s unidentified owner bought it privately in the 1980s.

It has been exhibited at the Warner Bros. Studio Museum, the Pompidou Centre in Paris and the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

It was offered in a sale of other classic movie memorabilia.

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- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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  1. Iconic Maltese Falcon Prop Brings $4M at Bonhams – In the Air, Art+Auction's Gossip Column (blog) | hnwi.info says:

    […] the whimsical and lengthy title “What Dreams Are Made Of: A Century of Movie Magic …‘Maltese Falcon’ prop sells for over $4 million at auctionThe Global Dispatch‘Maltese Falcon’ figure sells for $4MTriValley Centralall 3 news […]

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