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Legendary American actor John Wayne, an icon of the western movie genre, left behind over 750 awards, scripts, costumes and other memorabilia which are set to be sold at a public auction next month.
The items, which were kept in a private vault by the actor’s family for 30 years, includes props from such beloved movies as The Searchers, Rooster Cogburn and the 1969 version of True Grit, for which Wayne won an Oscar — but also, as cbsnews.com reports, an Andy Warhol rendition of a John Wayne still from the movie ‘The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance’. The signed limited edition print was included in Warhol’s 1986 “Cowboys and Indians” series without permission. Wayne had passed away before then and the problem was resolved with the Warhol Foundation gifting the print, along with others, to the family. Other quirky collection items can be found among genuine movie props.
A public exhibition in New York of the remarkable collection drew fans and followers from around the country. “Ever since I saw him in ‘The Quiet Man,’ I absolutely adored him,” Maria Gardner, 75-years-old devotee of Long Island, told NYdailynews.com.
It was the Duke’s family who was behind the exhibition at the Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion, New York. “I’m really excited because my dad was very concerned with his fans, he answered every piece of fan mail that came in and tried to take time to talk with everybody that came up to him and we’ve had requests for years to do something like this and it took a long time to go through.” said Marisa Wayne to the BBC. “We had all of this in storage and it’s taken years to get through it all and sort it out but we’re really excited that we can do this and offer it out to the fans.”
His son Patrick spoke lovingly of his legendary father whom he said was ‘ambitious’ enough to would have succeeded in anything. “Had he gone to the navel academy, he would have been a head of the navy, [had] he gone through [to] finish college he would have been the president of the United States. He was gonna be a success at whatever he chose [and] ended up in films.”
The Duke, who died in 1979 from stomach cancer, had a movie career that span 50 years and won numerous award, including an Academy Award for best actor. The exhibition of his career will go on display once more in Los Angeles October 3-5 while the auction will take place at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles October 6-7, 2011.
Image Courtesy: http://www.flickr.com/photos/tom-margie/1543148174/