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French film star Alain Delon's guns to net thousands in Paris auction

Soleil Rouge, starring Alain Delon and his Colt Frontier 1873
Soleil Rouge, starring Alain Delon and his Colt Frontier 1873 DR

A collection of guns belonging to French 60s screen idol Alain Delon is due to go under the hammer on Monday evening in Paris.

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The sale will consist of 80 lots of weapons and souvenirs collected over the years by the veteran 79-year-old actor, who said recently that he had been "collecting everything all my life."

Among the antique weapons is a Winchester rifle from the 1950s US hit series “Wanted: Dead or Alive”, presented to him by Steve McQueen.

The 30-calibre Winchester Model 1892 used with terrifying speed by McQueen’s character Josh Randall in the 1950s Western was expected to fetch between 2,000 and 3,000 euros.

Delon is also selling a Colt Frontier 1873 pistol, which he used in the 1971 Western "Red Sun" starring Charles Bronson.

But the most valuable piece was expected to be a rare Holland .465 calibre double rifle that could fetch as much as 40,000 euros.

"It turns out that, at my age ... I have accumulated a mountain of stuff. Rather than leave these weapons to my children, I'd rather leave them money," Delon said in a recent interview in Le Figaro magazine.

"These are not cops' and robbers' weapons but a journey into a passion of Alain Delon," said Arnaud Cornette, who runs the auction house that will sell the collection.

Delon "built up his weapons collection with the same rigour, the same passion, the same high standards as he did with his other collections of paintings, sculptures, drawings, watches or wine," added Cornette.

"Certain lots are genuine works of art and will be coveted by collectors the world over," he said.
 

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