Hundreds of people are expected to follow the yellow brick road to Julien's Auctions today and Saturday for the sale of some of Hollywood's most memorable items including a "Wizard of Oz" dress worn by Dorothy herself, actress Judy Garland.
The iconic blue and white-checkered dress Dorothy wears to Emerald City in the film is one of 800 items being auctioned off. The Hollywood Icons and Idols Event is expected to bring in about $2 million, said Darren Julien, president and CEO of the Beverly Hills, Calif., auction house.
"What you are starting to see with pop culture memorabilia is that it is becoming an investment like fine art is," Julien said. "People who have bought these items over the years have seen that there is a market and they are selling off their assets to make money because the market is so strong."
The dress was previously owned by two fans of the film who decided to sell it after more than 30 years. The man, who wanted to remain anonymous, purchased the dress in 1981 as a gift for his wife, who is a "huge fan" of the film, Julien said. It is expected to be sold at 3 p.m. Saturday and haul in between $500,000 and $1 million.
The anonymous family said they were selling the dress partly because of concerns about preserving it, he added, and that the insurance alone on the dress cost too much to keep it.
Dresses from "The Sound of Music" and "A Place in the Sun," worn by Julie Andrews and Elizabeth Taylor, respectively, will also be featured in the auction and are expected to fetch between $20,000 and $60,000.
Other items from the collection include a racing jacket worn by actor Steve McQueen, which is estimated to receive between $40,000 and $60,000, as well as a certified copy of Marilyn Monroe's last will and testament from 1961, which is estimated to receive up to $7,000.
For cake lovers, a piece of the 1981 wedding cake of Prince Charles and Princess Diana, along with a fresher piece from the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge William and Kate will also be available for purchase for about $600.
People can participate in person or online, Julien said, which allows the auction to reach people around the world.