Star Wars’ X-Wing Fighter Sells for Incredible $3.1 Million at Auction

An X-Wing Starfighter has set the record for the most expensive Star Wars screen-used prop sold at an auction.

Star Wars is one of the biggest film franchises in the world. You don’t have to be a fan to know what Star Wars is about and as the years continue, new generations of fans grow into the franchise and enjoy the films and television series. It’s been 46 years since the first film was released and the mega-billion dollar franchise is still making a lot of revenue. One of the most sought-after accessories is those that have been featured in the original trilogy. Just recently, an original prop was sold in an auction for a whopping $3.1 million!


Credit to Tony Gutierrez/Associated Press

The prop that was sold was a 20-inch model of an X-wing starfighter that was used in filming the climactic battle in A New Hope. This model was a collection of the late Oscar-nominated model maker Greg Jein. It was thought to have been lost for decades and when Jein passed away, it was found in a box in his garage. Built by Industrial Light & Magic for Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, the Red Leader is one of four “hero” filming miniatures with controlled wings and lights. These hero models were built for close-ups and were used in the final battle.

“This model has not been displayed or modified since it left ILM. For those of us that grew up in the ’70s and ’80s, and those of us that work in visual effects, this model is as significant a find as the ruby red slippers or the Maltese Falcon.”

-Gene Kozicki (VFX Historian)-

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According to Joe Maddalena, executive VP of Hollywood/Entertainment memorabilia at Heritage Auctions, this auction set the record for the most expensive Star Wars screen-used prop sold at an auction. He also spoke about how this was a true testament to Jein’s work and accomplishments. “The worldwide response to the Greg Jein collections has been outstanding, a true testament to Greg and all he accomplished as visual effects artist and collector.”

It is unknown how the X-wing had become part Jein’s personal collection but according to Kozicki, he speculates that Jein might have obtained it while working on Steven Spielberg’s 1977 film Close Encounters of the Third Kind which was filmed during the same time. Other Star Wars items that came from Jein’s collection is a complete Stormtrooper costume and production scripts.


Courtesy of Lucasfilm Ltd.

The X-wings are one of the most recognizable spaceships in all of Star Wars. They became an icon of the original trilogy and the Star Wars franchise as a whole. Heavily armed with four laser cannons on the S-foils and proton torpedo launchers, they were designed for dogfighting and long missions. During the Galactic Civil War, the Rebel Alliance used the X-wing models in many different battles. They deployed the X-wings in the Attack on Lothal, the battle of Yavin, the battle of Endor and the bBattle of Jakku.

The X-wing was eventually upgraded approximately thirty years later. The T-70 was used by the Resistance while the more advanced model, the T-85 was used by the New Republic Defense Fleet.

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On April 25, 2014, Lucasfilm announced that the Expanded Universe would be discontinued and rebranded as “Legends” in anticipation of the upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Everything that existed in the Expanded Universe material was declared non-canon and the only previously published works that would still be canon were the original trilogy, prequel trilogy, and Star Wars: The Clone Wars film. After this was announced, this is where Lucasfilm began publishing new canon material that introduced new X-wing model fighters. One of the formerly unique X-wing models to the Legends, the T-65C X-wing starfighter, was re-canonized by the release of Star Wars: Rogue One.


What do you guys think? Are you a Star Wars fan? Do you think another Star Wars item can outsell the X-wing and if yes, what item? What is the most expensive Star Wars item you own? Let us know and don’t forget to check out our socials! If you like articles like this, make sure to follow us for more content.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter

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Stephanie Ramirez

Stephanie Ramirez

A film/tv enthusiast who loves everything nerdy including: Marvel, Disney, Star Wars, Comics and Books.