You can soon buy a huge piece of Star Wars history. If you have around $1 million to spend, you can bid on an incredibly rare Darth Vader suit, which was made around the time of The Empire Strikes Back. It is unclear if the aforementioned suit was ever used on screen, but it was used to make countless fans happy as Kermit Bryce Eller wore it at special appearances. Eller was hired by 20th Century Fox to make appearances as the iconic villain during the late 1970s and early 1980s.
As a whole, the Darth Vader suit consists of 17 pieces, including the iconic fiber glass mask and a battery pack. Kermit Bryce Eller, who is 6' 5", made appearances in the suit promoting Star Wars and even appeared in a different, earlier Vader suit for the 1978 Academy Awards. The suit was created by John Mollo, a British military illustrator and wardrobe consultant who designed the costumes for the first two installment of the original trilogy.
Bonhams, who is auctioning off the incredibly rare Star Wars suit, believes it will fetch anywhere from $1 million to $2 million, which is pretty crazy. The Darth Vader suit is movie quality and may have been used in The Empire Strikes Back, but it has been in a Thousand Oaks, California storage unit for nearly 40 years. Kermit Bryce Eller stopped appearing as Darth Vader around 1982, stating the popularity had worn off a bit by then. Now, Darth Vader is an icon and that suit could very well reach up to $1 million if the right buyer is found.
A recent auction saw an R2-D2 unit go for $2.75 million, so this Darth Vader costume could end up making a little less than that. John Mollo created the suit and it was modeled on clerical robes, a military helmet, a gas mask, and a motorcycle suit. When looking at it now, it all makes sense, but those diverse elements are what made Darth Vader look so cool. As for why he's getting rid of it, Kermit Bryce Eller says it's time to bring someone else joy. It's been in his storage unit collecting dust, so might as well turn that into a lot of money.
The Darth Vader suit will go up for auction on May 14th. While the suit may or may not have been in The Empire Strikes Back, Lawrence Kasdan, the of the movie and Raiders of The Lost Ark hired Kermit Bryce Eller for a birthday party and so did John DeLorean, so this suit has seen some stuff, that's for sure. If you're a crazy Star Wars fan with a lot of money to burn, you can own a piece of history. The auction information was first reported by the New York Times.