WHAT: Entering its 51st year of growth in selling pop culture and assorted memorabilia at auction, Hake’s Americana in York, Pa., pulled off a $2.35 million auction last month. In a two-day sale, 2,332 lots ranging from rare comic books to political memorabilia and movie posters brought astounding results.
One unusual item, a prototype rocket-firing Boba Fett action figure from Kenner’s 1979 “Star Wars” toy line brought $86,383.47. The presale estimate was $35,000 to $50,000.
After the dust settled, we figured that the total on the 3.75-inch-tall figure amounts to about $23,035 per inch. Now that’s impressive!
MORE: The cased figure, ranked 85 NM+ (near mint plus) by AFA (Action Figure Authority, a grading service), came with a notarized Collectible Investment Brokerage LOA (another grading service) paper certifying that it came from a specific, known collector. In the volatile stratosphere of high-end collecting, some grading services matter; others, not so much. This is no level for amateurs.
SMART COLLECTORS KNOW: Sold in a custom case, the prototype was obviously recognized as unique from the beginning. Inside the archival case, the mini red rocket and figure are separate; and the firing mechanism with spring is visible.
HOT TIP: The unpainted figure sold as Part II of a noted collection. Part I, consisting of 60 lots, sold in late 2017 for almost $300,000, setting new world records.
BOTTOM LINE: For big-money lots, Hake’s offered a flexible payment plan with a non-refundable deposit.