I guess I was not alone in following this incredible auction - incredible in terms of results that is.
I could not believe my eyes and ears as a Mark Hamill signed 8" x 10", nicely dedicated to Prowse, went for £15,000 (nearly £20,000 including fees etc.) and similar Carrie Fisher for £11,000 before fees.
In some ways I was even more amazed at what some undedicated lots on repro or fan convention items fetched (Hamill up to £4,700 before fees, Fisher £3,600 before fees). I have no idea what the more minor characters usually fetch but there seemed to be some incredible prices there too. I do know that Dave Prowse's own autograph wouldn't normally fetch up to £1,600 before fees!
Going off topic, most of the non-autographed items went for well over normal market prices too.
I know star association carries a premium but if the object bears no evidence of having being owned by the star I'm not sure that much of a premium is really justified. Mr. Prowse was also not exactly in a leading role either - face never seen, voice never heard as far as I know.
Here is a link to press report and a link to the results.
I know that the auction did benefit a charity to an undisclosed extent. Maybe some bidders were bidding so high to donate.
I think this is a largely ignorant take, Dave Prowse was the embodiment of the most recognizable villain of all time and spent the better part of his life embracing his brand and meeting Star Wars fans. The vast majority of Star Wars collectors have met Dave at least once, or have his autograph. Items personally owned by him, being auctioned for charity, would and clearly did command premium values. None of these prices surprised me in the least, and people are walking home with some cool pieces of Star Wars history.
Thanks Mike T, I confess that I am not a Star Wars fan, which might explain why I didn't "get it". I do have something of an interest in Carrie Fisher due to her books and have an nicely dedicated autograph of hers.
I agree, Eva. Most people have no idea who David Prowse is. He is a character actor. Star Wars fans are much more familiar with his work, and are therefore much more willing to pay a premium. Never underestimate the power of the Force.