LONDON, Sept. 14 -- Irish rock star Bono paid 35,600 pounds ($53,400) Wednesday for a costume worn by Charlie Chaplin in the film 'The Great Dictator.' The lead singer of the group U2 made an absentee bid for the off- white jacket with swastika arm bands, jodphur pants and matching cap at a Sotheby's auction of rock 'n' roll and film memorobilia and animation art.
Bono told Sotheby's he plans to display the costume in Mr. Pussy's Cafe Deluxe in Dublin, which is owned by members of U2. 'The Great Dictator,' made in 1940 and nominated for three Academy Awards, was a satire on the rise of Hitler featuring Chaplin as a Jewish barber who is mistaken for the German dictator. After the movie, the costume was given to Jaques Cartier, an American dancer and choreographer, for use in his one-man stage performance Figures of Fire. Cartier later gave the costume to a friend who sold it anonymously through Sotheby's Wednesday. Bidding for the oufit began at 10,000 pounds ($15,000) but quickly shot up to its sale price as bidders on the floor and over the phone battled for it. Sotheby's pre-sale estimated worth for the costume was between 25,000 and 35,000 pounds ($37,500-$52,500). Several U2 items, including a multi-platinum sales award, were also up for auction in the two-day sale.