PHOTO: Sealed VHS Tape of ‘Back to the Future’ Nets Record $75K at Auction

Back to the Future
Universal Pictures, Amblin Entertainment

A sealed 1986 VHS tape of Back to the Future fetched $75,000 at a recent auction as VHS surges in popularity among collectors.

The copy was the property of actor Tom Wilson, who played character Biff Tannen in the movie, CNN reported Sunday.

After listing the tape on eBay and getting a massive response, he contacted Heritage Auctions in Dallas to sell it.

In a social media post June 10, the auction house shared a photo of the tape and said its “First #VHS Event Sets Auction Record With $75,000 Sale of Actor Tom Wilson’s #BacktotheFuture”:

Heritage Auctions wrote in a press release a collector from New York picked up the videotape for the large sum, noting, “That’s the highest price ever paid at auction for a sealed, graded VHS tape.”

The release continued:

The blockbuster sold-out sale, which featured 260 VHS tapes, drew 598 bidders from around the world on its way to realizing a total of $584,750. And many of Thursday’s collectors were eager to pick up Wilson’s astonishing assemblage, which also included sealed, graded copies of Back to the Future II (which realized $16,250) and Back to the Future III($13,750), both of which are accompanied by signed notes from late MCA executive VP and Universal Pictures chairman Tom Pollock to Wilson, and 1990’s Back to the Future Trilogy boxed set, which sold for $10,000.

In a video posted May 27, Wilson put on a pair of gloves and showed viewers his VHS collection.

“The urge to open this, open the shrink wrap, to me was nearly unbearable. Because not only does it include Back to the Future one and two and three mint, but also the documentary, Secrets of the Back to the Future Trilogy, hosted by that film legend and lovable scamp, Kirk Cameron,” he said:

According to the CNN report, videotapes were becoming more popular as collector’s items, however, “We had no idea what was going to happen — no one’s done this before and to see the success, it’s amazing,” Joe Maddalena, executive vice president of Heritage Auctions, explained.

“When you see that, it’s a great sense of accomplishment, not even the financial aspect of it but just a moment of ‘I knew it! I knew nostalgic VHS tapes would be good,'” he added.


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