Citizen Kane - Oscars Auction Pulls In $3 Million
A haul of 15 Oscars, including a statuette handed to Citizen Kane's screenwriter, has pulled in more than $3 million (£1.8 million) at auction.
The collection of gold trophies, which also included an Oscar for Wuthering Heights, went under the hammer in Los Angeles two days after the 84th annual Academy Awards on Sunday (26Feb12).
Herman J. Mankiewicz's prize for his screenplay of 1941 classic Citizen Kane attracted the highest bid at $588,455 (£368,000), while the Best Picture Oscar won by 1933 movie Cavalcade fetched $332,165 (£208,000).
The auction was met with criticism by some members of the Academy, who cited a 1950 rule banning winners from selling the coveted accolade.
A statement from the Academy reads, "Members and the many film artists and craftspeople who've won Academy Awards believe strongly that Oscars should be won, not purchased.
"Unfortunately, because our winners agreement wasn't instituted until 1950, we don't have any legal means of stopping the commoditisation of these particular statuettes."