Announced first on our weekly newsletter, an exclusive E-Interview with Tim Lawes, Director of Consignments at Propstore. Tim is the longest-serving Propstore staff member outside of CEO Stephen Lane. Enjoy this,
PB (me): Firstly can you offer any tips to people that haven’t taken part in a Prop Store Auction before? Is there anything people aren’t usually aware of?
Propstore’s auction run in a traditional way. We have bidding in the room, on the telephone, on line and also by absentee bids. First step is to register for the sale here after that, we wish you the very best and happy bidding.
PB: Ok selfish question. I have a broken tile from the swimming pool of the snake/mongoose fight in Casino Royale, do you think I’d get more than a tenner for it?
TL: Ah, ‘em, ah, sadly no. In all seriousness, what I would always say, these items aren’t really about the money, it’s the joy they bring. That tile brings happiness.
PB: How much attention does the James Bond lots get compared to other lots? Is one franchise more lucrative than the next would you say for collectors? If you had to put them in a top five, (Batman, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Bladerunner, James Bond).
TL: The James Bond franchise would certainly be in our all-time top 5. Demand is ever present and increases still further when a new Bond film hits the screens.
There are collectors for the classic Connery films – although that material is much harder to find – and there are those who gravitate to whichever 007 they grew up with. Thinking about it, I might even put Bond in the top 3. Everyone loves Bond!
PB: I saw the No Time To Die tuxedo listed, do we know how many tuxedos were made for production?
TL: Costumes for lead characters are always produced in multiples. That is for a variety of reasons. Often a costume will become distressed as the story progresses. As most movies are shot out of sequence, the wardrobe department will need to provide the right costume, with the right level, of say, bullet holes, to the set.
There will also be costumes for stuntmen, doubles and stand-ins. However, this Craig costume we are offering is fully labelled for Daniel Craig and also comes with a certificate of authenticity from EON Productions. And that, is as good as it gets!
PB: The Ursula Andress Robe also seems like a very rare item to come onto the market. How do you go about setting a reserve listing for items like these?
TL: Valuing an item of this rarity is always difficult. This item is one of a kind. We look at comparable sales of similar items from our archives. We also look at sales in other auction houses and charity events. The magic ingredient for valuation though, is just good, old-fashioned, experience.
That Poker Table!
PB: Before these items go to auction do you ever pitch the catalogue privately to the likes of Danjaq or private clients? Or perhaps to establishments. I.E I imagine the owners of the One & Only Ocean Club would love to have the Casino Royale poker table in their establishment where it was filmed.
TL: There is certainly scope for private treaty sales and they do happen. But generally speaking, most of our clients prefer to see their item go to auction.
They know we’ll do a great job presenting it to a global audience and that will publicise it on multiple media platforms all over the world. Selling through auction also represents an open and transparent view of its value.
PB: With all the firearms listed, are they all sold as deactivated? Would it be possible to activate them again? I’m guessing there is a bit more legality involved with the selling of firearms, even if they’re prop guns, stunt guns etc?
A deactivated weapon can’t be reactivated. The process is specifically designed to make a gun safe, permanently. Rubber weapons fall under a different section of UK law and actually have more restrictions on their sale than their hero counterparts.
Pistols are always popular with collectors. The franchise is synonymous with guns and they always feature so well on screen and in publicity.
PB: And seeing Arnold Schwarzenegger drop by the studios must have been pretty amazing. Did he tell you anything new about the props or costumes that you didn’t already know?
We were lucky enough to spend some time with Arnold during his recent trip to London. We got to spend a few minutes with him and it is safe to say, movie props were discussed.
The Propstore TV, film and music memorabilia in London, (November 9th – 12th 2023).