Auctioneer offers "hot" sale of Tony Curtis items

Tue Aug 9, 2011 3:03pm EDT
 
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - For those who like their celebrity memorabilia "hot," a Beverly Hills auctioneer has just the right sale -- fine art, jewelry and other items once owned by "Some Like it Hot" actor Tony Curtis.

Curtis, an Oscar nominee for "The Defiant Ones," art lover and painter himself, died in 2010 at age 85, leaving a trove of items that will be sold off by Julien's Auctions Gallery this September, the auctioneer said on Tuesday.

"Tony always said he was an artist first and an actor second," said Darren Julien, the president and CEO of Julien's Auctions. "I think he would love the exhibition that we created...He's looking down now and hoping the items find a good home because he truly loved these pieces."

Collectors will have the opportunity bid on items such as a Russian 14 carat gold and sapphire cigarette case estimated at between $4,500 and $6,500 and an Andy Warhol "Some Like it Hot" shoe that's worth $20,000 and $30,000. A trefoil dish inset with Russian coin is estimated at $3,000 to $5,000.

Curtis appeared in over 100 films during his 60 years in show business, winning critical acclaim for both comedic and dramatic roles.

Among his most memorable movies were the comedy "Some Like It Hot," co-starring Jack Lemmon and Marilyn Monroe. His credits include "Spartacus," "The Boston Strangler" and 1958's "The Defiant Ones," in which he played a white prison escapee who is chained to a black man, portrayed by Sidney Poitier.

While his Hollywood career was glamorous, Curtis' personal life was racked by turmoil and change. He was married five times, his first and most famous to actress Janet Leigh.

The estate auction features property Curtis owned throughout much of his life, from the time he served in the U.S. Navy during World War II to the 2000s.

An 18 carat gold Audemars Piguet Chronograph wristwatch is estimated at $6,000 to $8,000, according to Julien's Auctions.   Continued...