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(Credit: Prop Store auction)

Film

Wilson! 'Cast Away' volleyball is up for auction

@Russellisation

We hope that no one would need such a friend, though for those who are after a homely companion and a nice, albeit strange, ornament for their living room, the original volleyball from the Tom Hanks film, Castaway is up for auction. 

Directed by Robert Zemeckis, the same mind behind Forrest Gump, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Back to the Future, Cast Away follows Hanks as Chuck Noland, a FedEx executive who goes through a physical and mental test after crash landing on a desert island. Slowly losing his sense of reality, the man finds comfort in a washed-up volleyball on which he paints a face and gives a crude hairstyle. 

For die-hard fans of the 2000 film, you can bid for the iconic volleyball on the auction website, though with the current bid at £42,000 you’ll have to dig into your savings. Discussing the item itself on the auction website, the listing states: “Markings on the face and placement of the stitching on the leather screen match to later scenes on the raft Chuck created to escape the island, including a close-up of Wilson bobbing up and down the morning after a brutal storm. This shot is followed by the heartbreaking sequence in which Wilson fell off the raft and drifted out to sea, once again leaving Chuck alone”. 

Becoming a well-known piece of cinematic iconography at the turn of the 21st century, Cast Away, and the volleyball named ‘Wilson’ earned their place in film history with Tom Hanks earning an Oscar nomination for his performance. 

Outlining the careful nuances of the prop’s quality, the listing further states, “This version of Wilson was placed in water for long periods during filming. Therefore, the overall shape of the ball warped slightly, and the facial detailing became somewhat blurred compared to shots earlier in the film. All minor signs of wear present on the lot are from use on production”.