Casablanca piano will see bids to the tune of $1.2m at auction



2015-06-26 13:04:17

Casablanca piano will see bids to the tune of $1.2m at auction

The most romantic movie prop of all time, the piano used in Casablanca, will sell on December 14

"Play it, Sam" is one of the most memorable (and misquoted)lines from 1942's Casablanca, and now collectors have the chance to own the piano on which As Time Goes By was played,at Sotheby's December 14 auction in New York.

Casablanca pianon auction The other Casablanca piano is currently at the Warner Bros Studio in California

The aged piano is to sell for $800,000-$1.2m in the sale. It was originally offered by Sotheby's in 1988, where itsoldfor $154,000 to a Japanese collector, who at the time paid one of the highest prices ever seen for a movie prop at auction.

Should it meet its high estimate in the present sale,the piano will have shown a return of 8.2% pa since the 1988 auction, perfectly highlighting the investment potential of top movie props and spelling great news for its present owner.

The piano stars in the film's famous Parisian flashback scene, where the two central characters (played by Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman) are shown leaning on a piano at La Belle Aurore. They both command a reluctant Dooley Wilson to play As Time Goes By,before Bogart delivers his immortal line: "Here's lookin' at you, kid".

With the song a perfect summation of the couple's love affair,Sotheby's David Redden commented: "How can anything say 'I love you' better than the piano from Casablanca?"

As Time Goes By is now synonymous with Casablanca, yet it was originally written by Herman Hupfield in 1931 for the play Everybody's Welcome. The writers of the original Casablanca theatre production, Murray Burnett and Joan Alison, chose to re-usethe song as a succinct representation of the love story.

Bogart also had his beginnings in theatre. Paul Fraser Collectibles is currently offering a pair of Humphrey Bogart worn jodhpurs, which he sported as Don Ellis in the playChrysalis in 1932.

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