Auction line up underscores rock-solid market for Star Wars

01 November 2022
Rare Star Wars action figures estimated at $100K-$200K

The quest for early Star Wars collectibles has reached a fevered pitch, but the auction market tells us the journey is just beginning. Interest in Star Wars items is stronger than ever, especially for prototypes and samples, rare variations, and toys produced in low numbers or no numbers at all. To some, it may seem that Hake’s – the auction house holding numerous world records for Star Wars material – has already sold the ultimate rarities from that wildly popular category. But exciting surprises continue to emerge, some from unexpected sources, and those fresh consignments and new discoveries will be front and center at Hake’s November 15-16 pop culture auction. 

The high-end selection of elusive action figures is led by a carded double-telescoping Ben (Obi-Wan) Kenobi. The encased, 3.75-inch Ben Kenobi 12 Back-A figure is extremely rare and only the third carded example of its type ever to be auctioned by Hake’s. A SKU on the package’s footer identifies the figure as an earlier production, and the mere fact that it is packaged makes it “infinitely rarer” than a loose one, says Hake’s catalog description. Its condition is sure to please, with an AFA grading of 75 EX+/NM. Estimate: $100,000-$200,000

A 3.75-inch sample figure of Princess Leia from Kenner’s Star Wars: Return of the Jedi (1984) line presents the beloved character in a solid pink poncho as opposed to the later camouflage version. Also, its packaging makes it unusual. “The figure is affixed to an Imperial Stormtrooper/ Snowtrooper blister card because, at the time the sample was produced, cards for the Leia figure had not yet been made,” said Alex Winter, president of Hake’s Auctions. AFA-graded 60 Y-EX, the Leia sample comes with a notarized CIB LOA and is estimated at $20,000-$35,000.

Content continues after advertisements

An exceedingly rare 10-inch-tall prototype of a talking Yoda doll represents the idea for a toy that was meant to be part of Kenner’s 1981 merchandise line for Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back, however the doll design never made it to the production stage. For that reason, the Yoda offered by Hake’s joins the elite ranks of the most sought after of all unproduced Star Wars toy prototypes. Of the few that are known to exist, it is one the most complete examples. Graded AFA 80 NM, it comes with a notarized CIB LOA and is estimated at $50,000-$75,000.

As the slogan goes, there’s more than meets the eye with Transformers, and all eyes will be fixed on a Transformers (1984) Series 1 Autobot Commander Optimus Prime, which changes from a tractor-trailer to a robot with headquarters, then back again. It comes in its original window box, which is AFA sub-graded B80 W85 F90. Estimate $10,000-$20,000 

GI Joe action figures have been steadily on the rise. Collectors won’t want to miss Hasbro 1980s GI Joe Snake Eyes series 1/9 back 3.75in straight-arm action figure, AFA-graded 80 NM. It’s on its original blister card with a Cobra Commander mail-in offer ad and is estimated at $5,000-$10,000.

View the full catalog online and sign up to bid at