Auction News

Major Star Wars prop sale flies into view


Y-Wing model from Star Wars Episode IV a New Hope
Image courtesy of Heritage Auctions.

An on-screen model of a Star Wars spaceship will be sold this July in Texas in what should be a major event for collectors of the sci-fi franchise.

Heritage Auctions list the “Gold Leader”/ “TIE Killer” Y-Wing ship for sale at their July 25 auction. The model was used in Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, the film that – as simply Star Wars – launched the sprawling sequence of movies, TV shows, games and more in 1977.

These models were so detailed and realistic they took audiences to a convincing galaxy far away.

The piece is 27.5″ x 14.5″ x 4.5″.

A Star Wars forum on the Y-Wing’s history suggests that this is a prop that was used in A New Hope and then “passed into private hands.”

Although it had a short life, the prop is central to the Star Wars story.

Gold Leader was flown by Jon “Dutch” Vander in the battle that destroyed the Death Star. Vander was himself shot down by Darth Vader. Vander’s ship, a light bomber, exploded in flames.

Star Wars memorabilia is highly collectible. The film produced huge quantities of merchandise, some of which – if rare and sought after and in good condition – can raise good prices. The most valuable Star Wars action figure thus far is a prototype of a model of the character Boba Fett. That realised just over $200,000 at sale.

Props from the film are in another category, and almost all are very valuable.

Earlier this year, a script used (and annotated) by Harrison Ford made nearly £11,000 at auction.

The pioneering special effects models by George Lucas’s Industrial Light and Magic company are among the most in-demand Star Wars props.

In October 2023, a 20-inch X-Wing from the same film sequence was auctioned for $3.1 million, the current record for the film.

No estimate or opening bid has yet been set for this item.

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