Entertainment & Arts

Princess Leia bikini sells for $96,000

The bikini as worn in Return of the Jedi Image copyright ALAMY
Image caption Actress Carrie Fisher was not a fan of the skimpy costume

The "slave Leia" bikini worn by actress Carrie Fisher in Return of the Jedi has been sold for $96,000 (£63,220).

Bidding for the costume opened at $80,000 at the online auction, run by US firm Profiles In History.

As well as the bikini, the unnamed winner received a collar, several chain links, and a letter of authenticity from Star Wars designer Richard Miller.

Fisher disliked the outfit, calling it "what supermodels will eventually wear in the seventh ring of hell."

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According to the auction listing, the bikini was made of "flexible, gold-painted red dense-urethane rubber".

Nonetheless, the costume became a piece of pop culture history. Fisher wore it on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine to promote Return of the Jedi and her Madame Tussauds waxwork features the outfit.

The bikini also became a central plot point in an episode of Friends, with Ross (David Schwimmer) persuading Rachel (Jennifer Aniston) to dress up as Princess Leia.

Image copyright Profiles In History
Image caption The costume is modelled by a dummy in the auction listing

The gilded two-piece was unusually revealing for Fisher's character, Princess Leia, who was forced to wear it by the slug-like crime lord Jabba the Hutt, who was holding her captive.

Speaking about Leia's character development in the third Star Wars film, Fisher told Rolling Stone: "She gets to be more feminine, more supportive, more affectionate. But let's not forget that these movies are basically boys' fantasies. So the other way they made her more female in this one was to have her take off her clothes."

Despite the bikini's notoriety, it was not the most popular item at the memorabilia auction.

The highest price was fetched by a miniature model of Princess Leia's "Blockade Runner", also known as an Alderaan cruiser or CR90 Corvette.

The first flying vessel ever seen in a Star Wars film, the ship sold for $450,000 - a record for a Star Wars artefact.

Fisher is set to reprise her role as Princess Leia in the forthcoming film Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens.

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