Cowardly Lion Costume Sells for $3.1 Million at Bonhams

The Cowardly Lion costume. Photo: Bonhams

The Cowardly Lion costume worn by actor Bert Lahr in the 1939 classic The Wizard of Oz was sold today at Bonhams for $3,077,000 in its sale “TCM Presents: There’s No Place Like Hollywood,” which started at 1 PM this afternoon. The estimate for the lot was not available to the public.

Bidding opened for the lion costume at $1.6 million, as per a representative at Bonhams, and the coveted costume went to a telephone bidder in New York.

The lion costume was created by famed MGM costume designer Gilbert Adrian, who created the piece out of actual lion hides. Lahr wore the same costume throughout the filming, which heightens its value.

While the sale is expected to continue until at least 7 PM, thus far the highest work sold has been the piano from Casablanca on which Sam plays “As Time Goes By,” which sold for $3.4 million.



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