Superman III – Evil Superman Costume

Date Sold: 23/06/2018

Amount: $200,000.00 ex Buyers Premium 25%


An original costume worn by Christopher Reeve in Superman III (Warner Bros., 1983). This style was made to be scene specific to the sequence in which Superman is “evil” and thus the material is shades darker in color (dark blue, dark yellow and maroon as compared with the traditional brighter blue, yellow and red used otherwise). The multi-piece costume consists of five components in total: a custom blue knit leotard with the stylized Superman logo sewn into the front with attached maroon trunks, a pair of matching knit tights, a cape, a belt and a pair of boots.

Full costumes are rare, with the cape, belts and boots being the most difficult pieces to find. In this set, all of the components are designed to the “Evil Superman” scene requirements.

The tunic features the iconic “S” shield emblem sewn into the chest, with snaps on the shoulders to help hold the cape in place. It features a pull zipper down the back. Included is an original Bermans & Nathans wardrobe tag noting “CHRISTOPHER REEVE, COLOUR E, 18632, SUPERMAN III.” The tights are matching color and feature sewn-in feet. The cape has female black snaps to attach to the male black snaps sewn into the tunic and also has a wardrobe tag sewn in noting “C REEVE, COL/E 3, FLYING.” The belt is made of a type of yellow vinyl with tan leather backing. Based on glue residue, it would appear likely that there was originally a wardrobe tag glued in place that has since been lost. The pair of maroon colored and painted boots are size 11. It would appear that they were originally the traditional red color and thus likely used in other scenes in Superman III, Superman II, and/or Superman: The Movie. Written inside the boots is “CR NO 6”; also, the traditional Superman red color is seen inside; zippers down the back. Made of multiple types of materials with custom construction.

This scene-specific suit was used on set in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, during the filming of the scene within the bar as well as at Pinewood Studios in England during the filming of the scene in the junkyard. It would appear that the tunic may be a screen match to a publicity photo related to the scenes described above, as there is a pinch in the stitching at the front of both shoulders that would seem to match up.

The consignor acquired this costume from Jim Hambrick in 2005, so this costume has been evaluated by a third-party expert who has identified the features and “tells” of an authentic example of a production made and used Superman costume. In his evaluation, he has found that the distinctive custom fabric used for the genuine costumes in these films is correct, featuring the shimmering material woven in the distinctive pattern used exclusively by Bermans & Nathans for all of its production-made Superman costumes. The overall patterns and cuts and sizing are consistent with those costumes found in the Warner Bros. Archives. The wardrobe tags appear correct. The very unique and custom blending of two types of fabric in the feet of the tights is correct. The tunic features the unique sweat pads found sewn in the armpits of the costume. Accompanied by a copy of the film.