Thirty-five years ago, no Hollywood star had the box-office power of Burt Reynolds — and there's still a little of that magic left, based on an auction of Reynolds' personal items this weekend that included a 1977 Pontiac Trans Am in "Smokey and the Bandit" style, which sold for a stunning $480,000.
The Trans Am was one of several hundred items Reynolds sold through the Julien's Auction house at a sale in Las Vegas last weekend, from his awards and art collection to props from several of his movies. None drew quite the bidding that the Trans Am did — a car that was detailed as a promotional vehicle for the movie, then given to Reynolds after the movie wrapped. (It's a different Trans Am than the one up for sale by the Wellborn collection in Florida.)
As classic cars go, there was precious little information available about this car, aside from that Reynolds had held onto it since the Bandit days. Photos released by Julien's shows a Trans Am in need of some restoration, although the new owner will be wise to simply make sure the Screaming Chicken logo and "1977 Pontiac Trans Am Owned By Burt Reynolds" gold door tag are preserved rather than replaced.
Julien's had expected the car to sell for $80,000.
That was a trend throughout the auction; many of Reynolds' personal effects sold for far above their estimates, from trophies and artwork to movie memorabilia. A jacket left over from "Stroker Ace" expected to fetch $600 went for $9,375; his football helmet from "The Longest Yard" went for $20,000, and the canoe built for "Deliverance" sold at $17,500. That's one movie vehicle we'd rather let someone else pilot.