With just four films under her belt – “The Bodyguard,” “Waiting to Exhale,” “The Preacher’s Wife” and the not-yet-released “Sparkle” – Whitney Houston wasn’t as prolific as some of the stars Julien’s Auctions lists among its “Hollywood Legends.”
But the company leapt at the opportunity to auction earrings and a vest the performer wore in her breakout role opposite Kevin Costner 20 years ago, and a floor-length black velvet dress. The items became available when the 48 year-old singer died on February 11th in the Beverly Hilton hotel, blocks from the business that's putting them up for bid. Her funeral took place over the weekend in her native Newark, New Jersey.
Auctioneer Darren Julien admitted that the timing of Houston’s death just on the eve of this year's Grammy Awards will add to the items’ value – and he told the Associated Press that there’s little point in hiding them for fear of offending someone. Julien’s is the auction house that last June sold the red-and-black leather jacket the late Michael Jackson wore in his “Thriller” video for close to $2 million.
Other items in next month’s auction include the staff Charlton Heston’s Moses used to part the Red Sea in “The Ten Commandments,” Judy Garland's tuxedo jacket from "A Star is Born," Christopher Reeve's "Superman" costume and a cane Charlie Chaplin’s Little Tramp twirled in his silent movies.
They’ll be on public display at the auction house starting March 19th.