Actor Dustin Hoffman recently shed a few pounds by selling off all of his many prized possessions. Hoffman lives in the San Remo apartment building on Central Park West in Manhattan. It's a historic building in a historic neighborhood. Dating back to 1929, it was the first building of its style in New York, an opulent twin-towered residential skyscraper. Diane Keaton had once lived there, as did Steven Spielberg, Steve Martin, and several other A-list celebrities. Like a lot of Hollywood celebrities, Hoffman has amassed a lot of junk over the years. Well, perhaps not junk. Trinkets, maybe? No, “trinkets” doesn't quite capture the essence of Hoffman's collection; his home was filled with all kinds of priceless antique furniture, some exclusive high-end designer clothes, and a couple of props he’d liberated from a movie set or two. Of course, if he got rid of them they should probably be called once-prized possessions. Still, it must have been hard for Hoffman to part with some of the items that he sold, which makes us wonder, what items do other celebrities hold dear? What knick knacks would they be loath to part with? Or, as Oprah used to ask some of her interview subjects, what’s the one thing, or one collection of things, as the case may be, that some celebrities would grab in the case of fire?
6 Madonna- Fur Coat
Could there be a more quintessential symbol of luxury than a fur coat? The Material Girl enjoys the warmth of two coats that leave animal activists, including her friend Stella McCartney, feeling cold. Madonna favours a coat of Persian lamb’s wool that’s caused a rift between her and McCartney (who had designed one of Madonna’s wedding gowns). The coat is worth about $4,200.00 US. She also wears a chinchilla coat that’s worth nearly $58,000.00 US.
And there is a fur hat that’s worth just over $1, 640.00 US. Madge is on the books as a vegetarian who went vegan just a few years back. You would think that her wardrobe would be a little more animal-friendly. But I guess she still inhabits that material world where she got her nickname.
5 Simon Cowell- Bugatti
In a recent interview on Simon Cowell’s own The You Generation video channel, the American Idol and X-Factor curmudgeon was asked by a fan “What is the thing you most cherish in the whole world, except your amazing hair?” After some thought he answered, “My Bugatti.”
He bought the all-black Italian sports car just a few years ago in Beverly Hills on the advice of a friend (you might say the car got four yeses). “Sometimes I just stare at it,” He says of his beloved ride. “And this car,” he says, “It was like a movie. When I saw it in the showroom it was like a haunted car that was calling me towards it.” If there is any doubt in the reader's mind that Cowell was obsessed with this fantastic car, consider that he actually has a model of it on a shelf in his office. Cowell has quite the car collection, and his Bugatti Veryron was the most expensive of the lot. He says never really drove it much. And somehow he let it go; despite his apparent love for the car, Cowell just recently sold his precious Bugatti for $1.375 million US.
4 Lady Gaga: Michael Jackson’s Clothes
When Stephanie Joanne Germanotta was graduating high school, she dreamed of making it to Madison Square Garden. At the time she said her most prized possession was her piano. These days, Lady Gaga, who has made it to Madison Square Garden and back, holds as her most prized possession Michael Jackson’s clothes. On a visit to the The Ellen Show late last year, Gaga talked about her recent purchase of hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of the King of Pop’s costumes, from the famed sparkled glove, to the jewel-covered socks, his jacket from the Thriller video, and more. “I heard that they were auctioning off his tour clothes,” she told Ellen. “And these are my most prized possessions.” Clearly Jackson was a major influence on Lady Gaga, one she holds in high artistic regard. She said she bought most of the collection so that she could keep it all together. Out of respect, she says, she would never wear any of his clothes, either on stage or when she goes out. There are one or two pieces she might wear in the studio, though, or if she’s feeling down. But she assures MJ fans that she is taking good care of his things. As she told Ellen, “This sh*t is pristine.”
3 Miley Cyrus - Chanel Onesie
The wrecking ball rider seems to really like one-piece clothing... when she wears clothing. She’s been seen in public in comfy one-piece pyjamas, posted pics of herself twerking on Twitter in a one-piece hooded unicorn jumpsuit, and who can forget the now infamous teddy bear (or was it a mouse?) onesie she sported at last year’s VMAs before stripping if off to simulate, um, relations with Robin Thicke. The onesies appear comfortable. And perhaps it makes it easier to dress, or undress, as the case may be. But what her obsession with onesies is Miley has thus far kept to herself. What she is most proud of, however, is indeed a onesie, designed by none other than Chanel. She tweeted a selfie last April, posing in her abundant wardrobe, in what looks like a cuddly, comfy one-piece, short-legged pyjama, with the Chanel label prominently displayed on the back. A search for the onesie’s value, or how much Miley might have paid for it, proved fruitless. But Miley has done photo shoots for the label, so perhaps it was a gift, a little something to add to her look. And what look is that, you might ask? “You can just mix white trash and Chanel,” she’s said. “That’s me.”
2 Lea Michele- Her Cars
The Glee star has been spotted motoring around in a Range Rover that belonged to the late Cory Monteith, her one-time co-star and boyfriend. She does have her own cars, of course. But while some stars collect expensive and exclusive designer cars (like Simon Cowell’s Bugatti), Michele displays simpler tastes, and seems satisfied with just her two cars, choosing to drive either a $35,000.00 Toyota Prius, or a $45,000.00 BMW 320d. She had the interior of the Prius custom-fitted with green suede on the seats and steering wheel, and oak paneling on the armrests and doors. She’s got a 6-CD changer (CDs? Oh, come on, Lea, get with the times. Where’s your iPod?). And of course the air conditioner has a pollen filter. Her Beemer sports large, napa leather-bound bucket seats, a DVD player with mounted flat screen, a 6-speaker sound system, and can go from 0-60 in just over 7 seconds, just in case a clearance sale breaks out and she wants to make it there before the crowds.
1 Oprah – Photo Album
Of all of the valuable stuff and things that clutter any one of Oprah’s homes, she does, believe it or not, have one prized possession: a photo album of her dogs. This is the one thing she says she would grab in a fire. You would think that she would grab the actual dogs rather than pictures of the dogs. In any case, her friend and associate Lisa Erspamer surprised Oprah with the album for her birthday. She hired the award-winning Robin Layton, a dog owner herself, and photojournalist to the stars who has worked with President Obama, Jennifer Aniston, and Sydney Poitier, to name but a few. Although Oprah was home at the time, Erspamer didn’t tell her what Layton was coming to shoot. The result: a beautiful, bound book of photos featuring Oprah’s poochies, Luke, Layla, Sadie, Sunny, and Lauren.