REVIEW: Heritage auctions Sylvester Stallone auction

So the event is a few days past and here is my review of what I saw having sat through 80% of the live 2 day event and caught up on Sunday’s internet only sale.

First up you will know that I loved the auction catalog that single handedly pulled me into bidding on several items and made me write that it was the single best example of its type ever. I absolutely still think that BUT ther were several examples that aided and frustrated me where a lot was listed with extra items and they were not pictured. On reflection that was a minor but annoying issue.

This did of course contribute to finding some really great deal lots where it was missed by others, or not sometimes. As much as I tried my quest to get a nice piece of Stallone history was frustrated time and again. 

So obviously going to the HA.Com website can easily pull you up a list of prices realized, something that you can find yourself but I wanted to give my thoughts on the event and key pieces that I wanted to bid on or stood out.

Stallone himself came out to start the event off and I thought this was fantastic and shot my hopes to pieces all in one go. By having him there I think it altered the prices a good 20% or more. For charity great…but for my pocketbook bad.

Prices were incredible really across the board for this sale. That comes from several long time collectors and dealers who most if not all of the time were blown out of the water bidding wise the same as me. Too high? Not if you intend to covert the piece and keep it but if you intended to resell then I think you may have some problems. I certainly think having a one time sale with over 4500 bidders and wall to wall advertising had a big impact on prices which may never be realized again.

Did I dislike anything? Well yes. 

Several times I found the extended time given to bidders online or in the room made me lose out on winning the item. Sometimes people paid an extra $100. Sometimes the price doubled all for the sake of bringing the hammer down very slowly. 

A number of times the item was reopened for bidders online. I’m sure this didn’t please a number of people especially who for seconds had the winning bid only to have it pulled out of their grasp.
Strangely enough there were 3 occasions when people started getting rowdy in the room and had small altercations with the two auctioneers present usually because the lot had been closed and their bid hadn’t been taken because they had decided too late to bid. Personally I was on the side of the auctioneer BUT having seen them reopen lots for people online not doing it for people in the room must have been annoying to those people seated in LA. It was the argumentative approach I had an issue with to some extent as we viewers a home had to listen to verbal sparring for about a minute.

So what were my 3 items I liked? 

Well I did a lot of matching items before I decided to bid. I was under the assumption that Stallone would keep his hero pieces and I was exactly right a number of times.

  This piece from Rocky 6 was of interest to  me and after viewing the film it screen matched precisely on the seams, buttons and wear to the picture below. Seek the 4mb version of this picture below and you will see the match.

Ultimately selling for $4500 I thought that was a bit rich for my blood.

Next up this piece from Rambo which was a bear to screen match. I’d say almost impossible on screen. Even the tshirt seemingly brown at one point seemed to change to grey towards the end.

My initial plan was to buy the headwear, arrows and costume for display but when the arrows & quiver sold for $3000 that went out the window sadly. 

In the end runner up again! Sure it’s a simplistic costume but I loved it for that and that it was worn for roughly half the action of the film. 

So what else did I like but avoided due to price? Well I loved the Dredd costume but $30,000 without shirt or trousers was crazy. Another $6,000 for the shirt. I adored the Copland outfit but to make it complete about $10,000. Escape to victory was a favorite as a kid and that Ex-Planet Hollywood display went for around 10k to with the goalie shirt and ball which I’m not sure how many caught was a film used ball signed by the cast and crew including director John Huston on the front.

My final and most disappointing loss was the “prototype” knife from Rambo 4. Only it wasn’t. It was the hero closeup piece from the extended edition where Rambo burns the enemy boat and throws his Second movie knife away in an act of rejecting violence. It matched 90% and only because some of the paint had come off the black blade after filming. I hoped to snag this for $1000 but it sold for $5000. I’m sure I went quite high at the end.

This one really hurt after all the effort I put into it. Unfortunately and I saw this a lot during the sale of one item sold for X the second item sold for around the same price. No deals…almost exclusively. I believe because 2 Rambo knives identical in style to this sold for $10,000 so I guess the bidders assumed x2 $5000 makes 10k. No idea if anyone  else matched it, most people claimed not to I spoke to but there you go.

It’s not a great pic above but that’s the moment before when he throws it and it lands….beautiful piece although admittedly the prop was rough compared to the hero closeup pieces which surprised me as it received a full on shot.

So there you go. A wonderful event spoiled by deeper pockets than my own. What do you do.  

Congrats to the winners. I know many of us are waiting in the wings to rebuy these pieces down the road when the heats off the prices. I’m pretty sure we will see some of them down the road…just like John Rambo.



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