According to Andrew Ainsworth, who was responsible for making the helmets for Star Wars in 1976, this is one of only six of the first Stormtrooper helmets ever made. These six helmets were all made from the khaki-coloured material used to make fishponds (High Density Poly Ethylene) and then painted white. They were commissioned by George Lucas to illustrate his final pitch to the film company executives to obtain funding and it appears that they were subsequently kept and used in the film. When the project was given the green light, 50 more helmets were commissioned and Ainsworth decided that, as the paint had not taken to the plastic very well, he would instead use white vacu-fomed plastic for all the other helmets.
The helmet in this lot is identical to that sold through these rooms as part of the Collection Of John Mollo in 2003, except that it retains it's original HOVI MIX pa2 microphone tips (rather than mouldings of tips that were used on the majority of the helmets).
It seems that many of the helmets used in Star Wars were retained and subsequently used in The Empire Strikes Back. Further research has confirmed that the helmet in this lot was used in The Empire Strikes Back and can be seen in the widescreen edition. In the film, after the Rebel forces have landed on Bespin, Lando Calrissian [Billy Dee Williams] has a dispute with Darth Vader [David Prowse] over the torture of Han Solo [Harrison Ford] and after the argument, walks past two Stormtroopers in the corridor - it is the second one of these Stormtroopers who appears to be wearing the helmet in this lot. Close examination of this Stormtrooper reveals that the helmet in the film bears identical markings to the helmet in this lot where paint has peeled off and where glue has stained it.
Christie's would like to thank Jez at www.starwarshelmets.com for his assistance in researching this lot and Ben Jackson for his tenacious research in matching the helmet to the film footage.