Pop culture

Gimli's ax, Marilyn's earrings and Beatles rarities expected to draw hundreds of thousands

April 3, 2014 at 10:41 AM ET

For those who've ever wanted to own a piece of Hollywood or a rock 'n' roll rarity, the opportunity is at hand — for the right price. Upcoming auctions featuring celebrated movie and music memorabilia from the likes of Marilyn Monroe and The Beatles are expected to bring in big bucks.

Julien's Auctions president, Darren Julien, and executive director, Martin Nolan, stopped by TODAY Thursday to showcase some of the items up for grabs.

Of course, you'd have to be careful how you grab the very first item they presented — the double-bit battle ax of a dwarf warrior.

"This was gifted by Peter Jackson to John Rhys-Davies, who was Gimli in 'Lord of the Rings,'" Julien explained. "John used this in two of the 'Lord of the Rings' films."

And that's reason enough to expect the object to fetch between $120,000 and $140,000 when it goes on the block alongside other treasures, as part of the Hollywood Legends auction April 11 and 12 in Beverly Hills.

That might seem like a lot of cash, but baubles from screen icon Monroe are expected to go for even more. One pair of shoulder-sweeping earring in particular — which she wore while attending the premiere of "The Rose Tattoo" with pal Marlon Brando in 1955, as well as other public appearances — is estimated to draw between $150,000 and $200,000.

But (relative) bargain shoppers can take heart, for a mere estimated $6,000 to $8,000, you could be the proud owner of a "test dress" Judy Garland tried on when preparing to play Dorothy in "The Wizard of Oz," or even the well-worn sneakers Bruce Lee donned in "Game of Death."

And hey, really big spenders, there's something for you too.

A copy of "Beatles 65," signed by all four members of The Beatles just after they made it big in America, will go up for auction at the Hard Rock Café in New York's Times Square on May 17, and it's estimated value is between $200,000 and $300,00.

Also part of the Music Icons, Legends and Rebels event will be a 1962 Rickenbacker guitar played by both John Lennon and George Harrison and featured on the recording of "I Want to Hold Your Hand." With a value of $400,000 to $600,000, it's the biggest draw.

Even if you find the Rickenbacker to be a bit of a budget buster, it's available to view for free at the New York Library for the Performing Arts, until May 10.

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