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Han Solo’s jacket leads Prop Store sale of iconic Star Wars memorabilia

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2018-08-01

Harrison Ford's Han Solo jacket is expected to fetch over $1 million (Image: Prop Store)

A jacket worn by Harrison Ford as Han Solo in The Empire Strikes Back could fetch more than $1 million when it goes up for sale in London next month.

The famous jacket is amongst the leading lots in the Prop Store’s forthcoming Entertainment Memorabilia Live Auction, which takes place at the BFI Imax cinema on September 20.

The auction will feature a treasure trove of iconic Hollywood props and costumes, with several of the tops lots originating from a galaxy far, far away.

Ford wore the blue jacket on-screen throughout much of The Empire Strikes Back, regarded by many fans as the best Star Wars film to date, and it comes fresh to the market with a pre-sale estimate of £500,000 – £1 million ($661,300 -$1.32 million).

Harrison Ford's Han Solo jacket from Star wars: The Empire Strikes Back
Harrison Ford’s Han Solo jacket from Star wars: The Empire Strikes Back (Image: Prop Store)

The sale will mark only the second time one of Ford’s screen-worn Star Wars costumes has appeared for sale.

Back in April 2016, the leather jacket he wore as he returned to his most famous role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens sold for $191,000, to raise funds for the NYU Langone Medical Center’s FACES (Finding a Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures) department.

The popularity of Han Solo, voted the third-greatest movie character of all-time by Empire Magazine in 2015, is clearly evident in the prices paid by collectors.

In June 2018, the blaster Ford used in Return of the Jedi achieved a price of $550,000 at Julien’s Auctions in Las Vegas, making it the most valuable Star Wars prop weapon ever sold.

If the jacket achieves its estimate, it will set a new auction record as the most expensive Star Wars costume by a huge margin.

That record is currently held by an Imperial Stormtrooper outfit used in both Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back, which brought $320,000 at a Christie’s auction in 2011.

Hayden Christensen's hero lightsaber from Star Wars: Revenge Of The Sith
Hayden Christensen’s hero lightsaber from Star Wars: Revenge Of The Sith (Image: Prop Store)

Another notable Star Wars lot on offer in London is the hero lightsaber used by Hayden Christensen as Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Revenge Of The Sith, which is expected to sell for £50,000 -$100,000 (approx. $66,000 – $132,500).

Lightsabers used in the prequel trilogy of films by Christensen, Liam Neeson, Ewan McGregor, Samuel L. Jackson and Ray Park have all sold for $30,000 – $40,000 in recent years – so the current estimate would be a significant jump up in value, and would likely mark a new auction record for prequel memorabilia.

However, Anakin’s Skywalker’s lightsaber has some way to go to surpass the one used by his son Luke (although within the story of the films it’s actually the same one).

The weapon wielded on-screen by Mark Hammil in both Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back sold for $450,000 at Profiles in History in 2017.

Imperial Stormtrooper helmets from Star Wars: A New Hope and Star Wars: The Last Jedi
Imperial Stormtrooper helmets from Star Wars: A New Hope and Star Wars: The Last Jedi (Images: Prop Store)

The auction will also offer two further significant pieces of Star Wars history, in the shape of Stormtrooper helmets from both the first and latest films in the series.

Up first is a slightly battered helmet made by the production crew for Star Wars in 1977. Although there’s no information if it was worn on-screen, just 56 Imperial Stormtrooper helmets were ever produced for the film, making it rare item with an estimated value of £40,000 – £60,000 ($52,900 -$79,380).

Second is a First Order Stormtrooper helmet from Star Wars: The Last Jedi, the first of its kind to hit the auction block since the film’s release in 2017. The helmet is expected to fetch £30,000 – $50,000 ($39,700 – $66,170), with proceeds donated to the UK’s leading children’s charity The NSPCC.

The Prop Store currently holds the record for the most valuable Star wars Helmet ever sold, set by a TIE Fighter pilot helmet with realized £216,000 ($280,320) in 2016 – so expect some fierce competition for this pair when they hit the block.


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