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The lion suit in the Wizard of Oz was made of a real lion.

The Cowardly Lion costume, auctioned at 3 million dollars last year, has been preserved for decades in the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. The original costume had a mask included that was modeled to Bert Lahr’s face (Lahr played the lion). 

Unfortunately, the mask didn’t stand the test of time, and had begun to wear down. Bert Lahr’s son Herbert Lahr volunteered to have a mask molded of his face as replacement, for the closest possible resemblance. The crazy thing is that the mask almost never made it to the place where it is today. 
After filming was done, it was thrown out in the trash and was found by a trash collector. The sad part, many felt, was that it was being sold at all. Several other articles from the movie like the ruby slippers and Tin Man suit have been preserved in museums and never sold. 

At the same auction where it was sold was Bela Lugosi’s cape from the original Dracula, the DeLorean from Back to the Future III, Marilyn Monroe’s wedding ring from her marriage to Joe DiMaggio, and a painting of Marilyn by Earl Moran. 

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