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Looking for Holiday Gifts? These Oscars Are Up for Grabs

Statuettes for 'Mutiny on the Bounty,' 'Gentleman's Agreement' up for sale in rare auction
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Nov 19, 2018 10:10 AM CST
This undated image provided by Profiles in History shows Irving Thalberg's Academy Award for best picture for "Mutiny on the Bounty." The award is expected to go for between $200,000 and $300,000 at auction.   (Lou Bustamante/Profiles in History via AP)
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(Newser) – Two Academy Awards for best picture are going up for sale in a rare auction of Oscars. Auction house Profiles in History announced Monday that an Oscar awarded to Mutiny on the Bounty in 1936 and another given to Gentleman's Agreement in 1948 will go up for auction in Los Angeles starting Dec. 11. The Mutiny on the Bounty best-picture statuette is expected to go for between $200,000 and $300,000, the AP reports. Frank Capra presented the award to Irving Thalberg at the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles when the Academy Awards were less than 10 years old. The award is up for sale for the first time by the family of Thalberg, a big figure in Hollywood's early days. The best-picture Oscar for Gentleman's Agreement, the 1947 film starring Gregory Peck that won three Academy Awards, is expected to fetch between $150,000 and $200,000. Its seller wants to remain anonymous.

Auctions of Oscar statuettes are uncommon because winners from 1951 onward have had to agree that they or their heirs must offer to sell it back to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for $1 before selling it to anyone else. The Academy has said it firmly believes Oscars should be won, not sold. Still, occasionally Oscars beyond the reach of the rules go up for sale and sell for large sums of money. The late Michael Jackson acquired David O. Selznick's Gone With the Wind Oscar for a record $1.5 million in 1999. Orson Welles' Citizen Kane statuette sold for $861,542 in 2011. And in 2014, James Cagney's best-actor Oscar for 1942's Yankee Doodle Dandy failed to sell when no one would meet the minimum bid demand of $800,000. (Oscar ratings haven't been doing so hot.)


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