Original “Terminator” Arm Expected to Fetch $15K at Beverly Hills Auction


Arm.jpgRecession, schmecession, get ready to crack that nest egg and make your way to Beverly Hills.

Heritage Auction Galleries will be offering an original screen-featured prop T-800 Terminator arm for bidding on July 17 as part of the Signature Music & Entertainment Memorabilia Auction. The piece comes from the private collection of Shay Austin, who was an Assistant Art Director on the movie. Austin apparently rescued it from the set after the film’s final explosion scene.

“I was there and after the explosion I ran up with the special effects crew to see what was left,” said Austin. “We started picking up the pieces and I picked up the arm. I stayed on the film until the very end including doing pick up shots. After that we wrapped quickly, and I had another job to go to, so I tossed the arm into a box with some other leftover props, and then into my storage. Because I liked the film so much I kept some of the pieces as my souvenirs. Now Heritage is selling them all.”

No one knew that Terminator would become the iconic film it is today, and very few items from the original production were saved.

“No one saved props for their future value as memorabilia in those days,” said Doug Norwine, Director of Music & Entertainment Auctions at Heritage Beverly Hills. “That’s why the ‘original’ items from this classic film are so hard to find. In fact, besides James Cameron himself, Shay probably has the best collection of Terminator memorabilia on the planet.”

Fans of the film will remember that it was the arm from the first Terminator that was used as the basis for the technology that would become the ultimate demise of humankind in Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

The metal arm measures approximately 24″ in length and is partially articulated. One of the fingers has separated over time due to the soft-wiring of the endoskeleton’s parts, done to allow it to fragment properly during the explosion. The arm was also aged by the art department of the film to look properly scorched in the explosion. Otherwise the arm is in overall Very Fine condition. It is accompanied by the April 1985 issue of Cinefex magazine, with a cover feature on the movie’s special effects, and a letter of provenance from Austin.

Also included in the auction from Austin’s archive is a collection of Terminator Continuity Photos and Production Documents from the filming of the classic “I’ll be back” action sequence in the Los Angeles Police station, accompanied by five pages of shooting notes, a 92-page shooting schedule, and 14 pages of shooting schedule revisions.

The arm is expected to fetch around $15,000.