Iconic piano used in Oscar-winning classic from 1942 Casablanca, goes under the hammer at Sotheby’s on December 14th, on the 70th anniversary of the premiere of the classic movie. The 58-key piano, on which Sam, played by actor and singer Dooley Wilson performed “As Time Goes By,” during the love scene between Rick and Isla (Humprey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman), has a pre-sale estimate of $800,000 to $1.2 million.
Casablanca film is consistently ranked near the top of lists of the greatest films of all time, and also been named the most romantic and quotable movie of all time by the American Film Institute. It won three Academy Awards, including Best Picture.
“How can anything say ‘I love you’ better than the piano from Casablanca?” David Redden, vice chairman and director of the special projects department at Sotheby’s, said in a statement announcing the sale.
A Japanese collector purchased the piano at a Sotheby’s auction in 1988 for $154,000, the highest price ever paid for a movie prop.