Casablanca piano to sell for seven figures with Bonhams


The piano used in the classic movie Casablanca (1942) will sell on November 24, as Bonhams once again teams up with Turner Classic Movies to offer some of the finest movie memorabilia.

The iconic piano will sell in New York, as the star lot among two dozen collectors' items from the celebrated film. With another piano used only in the flashback scene selling for $602,500 in 2012, this example is expected to reach seven figures.

This - the more important of the two pianos employed in the film - was used in the iconic scene in which Ingrid Bergman utters the famous line "Play it, Sam" to Dooley Wilson, before he leads us into a rendition of "As Time Goes By".

All of the lots in the sale were likely consigned by collector Gary Milan, who has loaned his piano to the Warner Bros. Museum in California and is known to have owned a Maltese Falcon statuette.

Dooley Wilson Casablanca
Dooley Wilson is told to 'Play it, Sam' before leading into As Time Goes By

Milan's collection focuses on three films: The Maltese Falcon, Casablanca and Stagecoach. He describes Casablanca's enduring appeal: "Casablanca is about basic, core values, right and wrong. It's not based on blowing up things or special effects; it's best in black and white, and it has a plot."

More items include passports and transit papers from the film, a final draft of the screen play, as well as signed photographs of the cast.

Exciting bidders will be the door of "Rick's Café Americain", Humphrey Bogart's nightclub where much of the film is set.

Collectors can see the items on display in Los Angeles from November 6-9, and New York from November 20-24.

Paul Fraser Collectibles has a pair of Humphrey Bogart's jodhpurs for sale - see all of our movie memorabilia.

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