Tag Archives: Bram Stoker

Top 10 Most Valuable Movie Monster Props

Top 10 Most Valuable Monster Movie Props & Costumes Ever Sold at Auction
Ghostbusters Terror Dog Movie Prop

We love our movie monsters and we love collecting them in al their forms.  From creatures from outer space to beasts from the ocean depths, movie makers have spent decades creating monsters to keep us on the edge of our seats.

Here we take a look at ten of the most fearsome – and valuable – screen monsters to ever cross the auction block.

10) Brain Gremlin Puppet

Brain Gremlin Puppet

Joe Dante followed his hit 1984 horror comedy Gremlins with an anarchistic sequel featuring numerous parodies, slapstick, Chuck Jones animation and fourth-wall breaking humour. A screen-used animatronic puppet for the ‘Brain’ gremlin – given intelligence by a super-potion and voiced by Tony Randall – sold at Profiles in History in 2008 for $13,000. (Image: Profiles in History)

Related: Most Valuable Monster Movie Puppets

9) Ghostbusters Terror Dog

Ghostbusters Terror Dog Movie Prop

Despite featuring a host of less-than-scary spooks such as Slimer and the Marshmallow Man, Ghostbusters does feature two truly memorable monsters – the terror dogs. A stop-motion puppet, used as the demon alter-ego for Sigourney Weaver (“The nice lady who paid us in advance before she became a dog”) sold at profiles in History in 2008 for $13,000. (Image: Profiles in History)

8) Bruce the Shark Jaws 

Bruce the Shark from Jaws

Despite its status as a cinema classic, Jaws almost never made it to the screen. During production the mechanical sharks failed to work, or looked ridiculous, hugely delaying the shoot to the point the studio almost pulled the plug. Spielberg was forced to show the shark – nicknamed Bruce by the crew – as little as possible, which actually improved the film. An original 4ft prop shark used for close-up scenes sold for £16,675 at Christie’s in 1996. (Image: Christie’s)

 Related: Collecting Jaws Memorabilia

7) Bat-Dracula from Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Bram Stoker's Dracula Bat Movie Prop

Despite featuring some of the worst English accents in cinema history, Bram Stoker’s Dracula also provides one of the most intense performances as Gary Oldman inhabits the Count in Oscar-winning effects make-up. One of the most terrifying scenes features Dracula transformed into a gigantic bat, and the original suit and mask worn during the scene brought $30,000 at Profiles in History in 2011. (Image: Profiles in History)

 Related: Collecting Dracula

6) Creature from the Black Lagoon Mask

Creature from the Black Lagoon Mask

Man-in-a-suit monsters don’t come much more famous than the Creature from the Black Lagoon, who first appeared on the silver screen in 1954. He resurfaced again in 1955, in Revenge of the Creature, in which he fell in love with Lori Nelson, although their relationship ended in a hail of bullets. The original screen-worn mask from the film sold for $70,000 at Profiles in History in 2009. (Image: Profiles in History)

Related: Creature from the Black Lagoon Collectibles

5) Predator Suit 

Predator Suit

Stan Winston created the now-iconic design for the Predator whilst on a plane ride with director James Cameron, after Cameron commented he’d like to see a creature with mandibles. The 1986 film went on to spawn a franchise, starting with Predator II in 1990, and a full screen-worn mask and suit from the sequel brought $80,000 at Profiles in History in 2010.(Image: Profiles in History)

4) Starship Troopers Warrior Bug Puppet

Starship Troopers Bug Puppet

Paul Verhoeven’s satirical sci-fi classic features a wide range of monsters in the shape of gigantic alien bugs. Created using a mix of CGI and practical effects, the film earned an effects Oscar nomination in 1998 but was defeated by the all-conquering Titanic. A 72” tall screen-used warrior bug puppet sold at Profiles in History in 2012 for $85,000. (Image: Profiles in History)

 

3) Jurassic Park T-Rex Head

Jurassic Park T Rex Prop

Spielberg’s Jurassic Park may have featured some of the greatest CGI ever seen on film, but it also included practical dinosaurs made by effects maestro Stan Winston – for which he won an Oscar in 1994. An enormous, life-sized animatronic T-Rex head from the film sold for $110,000 at Profiles in History in 2007. (Image: Profiles in History)

 

2) Xenomorph Alien Suit

Xenomorph Alien Suit

One of the most famous movie monsters in cinema history, the creature from Ridley Scott’s 1979 classic was created by Swiss artist H.R Giger who also helped design the look of the film. Giger won an Oscar for his work, and the Xenomorph went on to become a true icon of horror. The original screen-worn suit from the film sold at Profiles in History in 2007 for $110,000. (Image: Profiles in History)

 

1) King Kong Armature

King Kong 1933 Armature

The most famous movie monster of them all, King Kong captured the imagination of movie goers when he roared to life in 1933. The film featured state-of-the-art stop-motion effects by Willis O’Brien, with three Kong models built from mechanical frames, foam and rabbit fur. One of the original 22” armature skeletons – used during the climactic scene on top of the Empire State Building – sold at Christie’s in 2009 for a record £121,500. (Image: Christie’s)  Another  armature skeleton resides in the monstrous collection of Bob Burns

This article is provided courtesy of Picollecta.com – read the original article on their site

Collecting Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Bram Stoker Dracula Stamps Ireland

Dracula is clearly one of the Big 5 famous monsters and considered the first of Universal Studio’s classic monster movies.  Any classic monster collector has his or her share of Count Dracula merchandise and the Bela Lugosi vs Christopher Lee conversation never gets old.

But since today is St Patrick’s Day and I’m of Irish descent, we’re continuing the conversation of Dracula as an Irish export since his modern Count Dracula was created by Irish write, Bram Stoker.  While many Dracula collectors focus on the vampire himself or the actors who have played the role over the years, what about collecting Bram Stoker?  Turns out, this is not an inexpensive option, but fascinating in it’s own right.  Dracula is one of the most famous books ever published, and it’s almost 120 years old.  Collecting antique books has never been the most affordable of hobbies and is really more like investing than collecting. Stanley Gibbons, a London collectibles company, offered up a very rare First Edition of Dracula by Bram Stoker for a mere $184,000 in late 2014.  Yep, you read that right.

Turns out this First Edition was high-grade, but more-importantly, it was signed by the author:

Signed First Edition of Dracula by Bram Stoker offered by London Auction House in 2014
Signed First Edition of Dracula by Bram Stoker offered by London Auction House in 2014

Pretty cool, but not going to be in my collection anytime soon.

I searched eBay in the Books: Antiquarian and Collectible category and turned up these current auctions of various first editions of Dracula these current auctions of various first editions of Dracula in the — variety of conditions and a wide spectrum of publishers to choose from, but all in all more affordable than the signed edition:

I quick search for Antique Vintage 19th Century Bram Stoker’s Dracula on Amazon turned up a range of antique editions of Dracula ranging in price from $89.99 to $300.

Of course, book collecting isn’t the most obvious category for collectors of classic monster merchandise — if you haven’t read Dracula by Bram Stoker, you owe it to yourself to do so — Dracula is beloved by Monster Kids of every age and the character continues to reverberate through pop culture. Just follow this link to download Bram Stoker’s Dracula to your Kindle and and settle in for a classic monster read by a great Irishman – sounds like a good St Paddy’s Day to this Irishman!

 

Movie Poster for Universal Studios 1931 Dracula
Movie Poster for Universal Studios 1931 Dracula

Celebrate St Patrick’s Day with Classic Monsters

St Patrick’s Day Isn’t the Most Obvious Classic Monster Holiday

1906 Portrait of Bram Stoker, author of Dracula,

While Ireland and Halloween go hand-in-hand with the modern holiday’s roots tracing back to the ancient Celts harvest festival, Samhain, the connections to the patron saint of Ireland are more tenuous.  Enter Abraham ‘Bram’ Stoker; Irishman and author of Dracula, one of the most famous books ever published and, arguably, the most famous of all monsters.

Stoker was born in Dublin in 1847 and it is said that he grew up on a steady diet of his Mother’s stories of the supernatural.  Ireland has a long history of fantastical and mystical creatures from leprechauns and banshees to it’s own vampire, the DeargDue.  The Celts, whose traditions never disappeared from Irish culture, had hundreds of gods and an equal number of demons and monsters.  Stoker grew up hearing these stories and they undoubtedly influenced his fascination for the macabre.

Dracula was published in May 1897 and, although it was critically well-received, it was not a bestseller.  In fact, it wasn’t until after Stoker’s death in 1912 that his book would achieve commercial success.  Stoker wrote a total of 18 books, including Lair of the White Worm, but it is his haunting tale of the vampire that has given him lasting fame.

For more about Bram Stoker, watch this video from Biography Channel (click to watch full screen)):

It’s fair to say that fans of classic monsters owe a debt of gratitude to Bram Stoker.  So, while tipping a pint at the pub today in celebration of all things Irish, raise a pint to Bram Stoker and that famous monster of his, Count Dracula.

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