Personal Items Related to Michael Jackson for Auction at Bonhams & Butterfields

Bonhams & Butterfields’ Entertainment Memorabilia auction on December 20, 2009 in Los Angeles will feature a wide variety of items related to Hollywood, Rock ‘n Roll and Animation Arts, including a selection of property from Michael Jackson’s private life. Also included are pieces related to Marilyn Monroe; the Brown Derby restaurant on Vine Street in Hollywood, and countless movie posters and vintage animation cells.

Headlining the December sale is a selection of personal items related to Michael Jackson which offer the public an opportunity to see what it was like to be the ‘King of Pop’ including clothing, items from his Neverland Ranch, master recordings of his songs, signed photographs, and behind-the-scenes paperwork.

“Thrilling” Jackson lots include: the t-shirt worn by him in the ‘Beat It’ video (the turquoise one seen under the red leather jacket he wears during the dance sequence) (est. $10,000-12,000), an enormous customized area rug depicting Michael Jackson and Lisa Marie Presley that was given to the couple as a wedding gift (est. $1,000-1,500); Jackson’s letterman’s style ‘Mickey Mouse’ jacket which still contains items he left in the pocket almost twenty years ago (est. $3,000-5,000); an audio cassette tape recording from Jackson’s now-infamous 1984 Pepsi commercial (est. $500-700); a personally owned and worn wool overcoat and hat gifted to the star by Russian military dignitaries (est. $2,000-2,500); a custom-made black fedora embossed in the lining “Michael Jackson” (est. $200-300); and the original 1983 master test proof recording of Jackson’s hit song ‘Thriller’ used by Grammy® winning master recording engineer, Bruce Swedien. This recording is being sold to benefit student scholarships for the California State University Summer Arts program (est. $4,000-6,000).

Additional items of note include a ‘Psychedelic Mandala’ used onstage by the Grateful Dead in the early 1970s (est. $5,000-5,500) and a fur costume worn by Beatle Ringo Starr as he portrayed ‘Atouk’ in the 1981 cult classic film “Caveman” (est. $1,000-1,500).

Highlights related to classic films will also be prominently featured. Items on offer will include a painted backdrop of the iconic O’Hara plantation, ‘Tara,’ created for the title sequence of “Gone With The Wind” (1939) by noted California plein air artist, Fitch Fulton (est. $20,000-25,000); an employment contract signed two times by a 23-year old Marilyn Monroe (est. $7,000-9,000) and a selection of classic and vintage movie posters from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s,” “Gone with the Wind,” “Pufnstuf” and countless others.

Also featured will be a selection of caricatures from the walls of the famed The Brown Derby Restaurant at 1628 North Vine Street in Hollywood, California. Consigned by David Gill Evans, longtime publicist for The Derby, the offering includes a Charlie Chaplin signed caricature, 1930s (est. $800-1,000); a Norman Rockwell signed caricature, 1940s (est. $400-600) and numerous other caricatures of iconic Hollywood stars as well as select pieces memorabilia from the noted establishment. In addition, Bonhams & Butterfields will be offering a selection of Animation Art. Featured works include a Walt Disney celluloid from “Bambi,” 1942 (est. $9,000-12,000) and two celluloids from “Pinocchio,”1940. The first cel form “Pinocchio” depicts Jiminy Cricket (est. $5,000-7,000) and the second features the character Lampwick, Pinocchio’s friend on Pleasure Island (est. $4,000-6,000).

The illustrated auction catalog is available online at in the weeks preceding the sale and Los Angeles previews.

Preview: December 17-19, 2009, Los Angeles

Auction: December 20, 2009, 10:00am