Posted: June 20th, 2011
The famous black and white Cecil Beaton dress designed for the Royal Ascot scene of My Fair Lady has been sold at auction for $3.7m (USD).
The auction took place at the Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills and was part of a larger auction of almost 600 movie costumes and props owned by screen legend Debbie Reynolds who starred in Singing in the Rain. Reynolds started collecting memorabilia in 1970 when MGM auctioned all their props and costumes, before creating The Debbie Reynolds Hollywood Motion Picture Museum. Sadly, the museum was never financially successful and after a series of renames and relocations it has finally closed it's doors and begun selling off the collection. The last permanent location of the museum was Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, where it moved to in 2004.
The biggest draw of the auction was Marilyn Monroe's famous white dress from The Seven Year itch which fetched $4.6m (USD).
In contrast to these auctions, the Breakfast at Tiffany's dress that was auctioned at Christies in 2006 only sold for $900,000 (USD) although that dress wasn't actually worn by Audrey in the movie.
The Paley Center for Media in Beverly Hills (formerly the Muesum of Television and Radio) is home to some rare archive footage of Audrey including the CBS program Rainy Day in Paradise Junction.