New York, May 24 (EFE). A New York federal court judge has blocked the auction of a dress worn by actress Judy Garland in the 1939 movie “The Wizard of Oz” that was expected to fetch more than $1 million, local media reported.
The Catholic University of the United States was going to auction the legendary white and blue dress, but a Wisconsin woman has filed a lawsuit claiming to be the rightful owner of Dorothy’s classic outfit.
At a preliminary hearing, a judge in the Southern District of New York ordered the auction, scheduled for Tuesday in Los Angeles, to be suspended until the case is resolved.
The Catholic University planned to use the funds raised to provide a new teaching position at the School of Music, Theater and Arts in Rome.
The two parties will meet in court on July 9.
The plaintiff maintains that the dress belonged to her uncle, who received the dress, according to the lawsuit, in 1973, when he was director of the theater department at the Catholic University.
The dress that Dorothy dragged by a tornado in Kansas into a fictional world was given to her uncle, actress Mercedes McCambridge, who was an artist-in-residence at the university, The New York Times reports.
According to the complainant, the actress gifted her relative “concretely and publicly” a gratitude for helping her in her “battle against alcoholism”.
The professor died in 1986 and the complainant claims to be her closest living relative.
The New York Times reports that Garland wore several versions of the dress, but only one is known, which was sold in 2012 for $480,000 and again in 2015 for $1.6 million.
The whereabouts of Dorothy’s dress remained a mystery until it was accidentally discovered last year in a shoebox while cleaning. EFE
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