If the Ruby Red Slippers from “The Wizard of Oz” are the most famous movie prop shoes ever created, then the piano on which Dooley Wilson “performs” “As Time Goes By” in Casablanca must certainly be the most famous piano ever seen in a movie.
According to this nbcnews.com story, said piano sold for a disappointing $602,500 at a Sotheby’s auction. They were hoping the piano might bring in a million dollar bid.
It’s entirely possible that the piano might have sold for more if Dooley Wilson had actually played the piano in the movie, but he did not.
Furthermore, if you take a close look at the photo of the piano accompanying (so to speak) the story, you’ll see that the keyboard is very short. I don’t think there’s a full 88 keys on there. The story doesn’t make it clear, but I’m not sure it’s a real piano at all.
But, as they say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and somebody thought it was worth more than half a million dollars. The previous owner paid only $154,000 for it back in 1988.
It just goes to show that as time goes by, some movie props increase in value.