Bert Lahr’s ”Wizard of Oz“ Script

Value (2013) | $150,000 Insurance

This is my great-grandfather, Bert Lahr, and this is his script of The Wizard of Oz. He was the Cowardly Lion.

He was the Cowardly Lion. People just probably gasped when they saw that. Tell us a little bit about the history of the script.

It was sitting in my grandparents' closet within the bathroom. I don't think they really saw the value that it could hold. When my grandfather passed away, it was willed to me.

And here we have a wonderful photograph of your great-grandfather, and it's to your grandfather, and that face, who could forget that face? When you were a kid-- obviously everybody watches The Wizard of Oz, every kid watches it-- were you afraid of the Cowardly Lion when he comes out? Did you know it was your great-grandfather?

I was always told that it was my great-grandfather. It's nice to know. It's a fun fact that I kind of hold.

And you yourself do some acting as well?

The new Oz movie was filmed here in Michigan, so I got a chance to play in Oz for about a good month. I was a Tinker. It was a great experience.

That's really wonderful. And here we have this amazing piece of pop culture history. The Wizard of Oz was released in 1939 and has continued in popularity to its iconic status today. This is his script that he used on set. It's to him. It's been in your family ever since. It has a few condition issues, but you see it and you're just amazed and it brings you right back to when you first saw that wonderful movie and his remarkable performance. It's really such an honor to see and to touch a piece like this. Thank you. Do you have any idea of value?

I tried looking it up a few years ago and I remember seeing one that sold at auction, but I don't remember it having any significant name associated with it. And I believe it sold for $7,000 or $8,000.

Yeah, Wizard of Oz scripts are very, very desirable because it is one of the most important films of all time and still one of the most popular and certainly one of the most collectible. As far as scripts belonging to members of the cast, it doesn't get much better than the Cowardly Lion, and here it is. Obviously, this is a family heirloom. I wouldn't insure it for anything less than $150,000. I think it's one of the most remarkable scripts I've ever seen.

That's definitely a lot more than I thought it was going to be valued at. Insurance is a necessity

It is, definitely. Thank you very much.

And he's so great. I mean, he just steals the movie. "Put 'em up, put 'em up, put 'em up!" "Put 'em up!"

Appraisal Details

New York, NY
Appraised value (2013)
$150,000 Insurance
Detroit, MI (June 01, 2013)
20th Century

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