HONG KONG - Stars Jacky Cheung, Eric Tsang, Alan Tam and Jackie Chan teamed up with their late friend Anita Mui's fans and bought about 400 lots at an online auction of her possessions, including her New Talent trophy for HK$1.55 million (S$281,000), said Apple Daily.
Determined to defend the singer's dignity and prevent the scattering of her items of commemorative value, the friends had not set upper limits on bids for her trophies, CDs, costumes, photograph albums, and newspaper clippings. They also purchased her Norma Kamali bra set with the price tag still on it - the item that had caused their anger on her behalf - and her collection of her old flame Masahiko Kondo's vinyl discs and records, said the report.
Near the end of the sale on Tuesday, the most intense bidding was for the New Talent Singing Award she won in 1982, launching her career. At 5.47pm, the top offer for the trophy was HK$55,000, said the report. But in half an hour, the price soared to HK$1.55 million, the highest bid of the auction.
The Anita Mui International Fan Club said it had raised funds to vie for lots and bought the award on behalf of the Hong Kong Performing Artistes Guild, of which Tsang, Tam and Chan are honorary presidents. Fan club president Selina So said: "We were helping the artistes guild make bids and needed a lot of manpower. The New Talent Award was the most intense. I didn't think the price would be so expensive."
The fan club used more than HK$2 million and bought back 42 awards, which will be handed to the artistes guild, she added.
The auction, Last But Not Least: Chattels Of Anita Mui Yim Fong, was launched by the administrator of her estate, HSBC Trustee, with proceeds to go to the living expenses of her mother. A previous sale was held in 2013. Even the mother asked to stop the latest auction.
Led by Cheung - the husband of Mui's sworn sister May Lo - and Tsang, the friends were in talks with HSBC for a week, said Apple Daily, citing unnamed sources.
They hoped HSBC would halt the sale and withdraw the bra set from it. On Tuesday, HSBC said it could not cancel an auction that had started. The friends and fans managed to buy back some items, including the bra set for HK$24,000.
The sale yielded more than HK$4 million in all, said the report. The top 10 lots were mostly Mui's trophies. One Jade Solid Gold Award she won for Rouge, the theme song from her 1988 film of the same name, went for HK$220,000.
Another expensive lot was one of her costumes, a midriff top with capri pants, which went for HK$80,000.