THE PROPERTY OF MR. FRANK DARABONT
From the film 'The Majestic'
1952 MERCEDES-BENZ 220A CABRIOLET
Chassis No. 187.012.05033/52
Engine No. 187.012.05212/52
Light ivory with navy leather interior and navy soft top
Engine: six cylinder, in-line, single overhead camshaft, 2,195cc, 80bhp at 4,850rpm; Gearbox: four-speed manual; Suspension: independent front with swing axle, coil springs rear; Brakes: four wheel drum. Left hand drive.
Nicknamed "Cupcake" this 1952 Mercedes-Benz 220A Cabriolet is in itself a movie star, having been featured prominently in the film The Majestic (2001), starring Jim Carrey. Offered in the auction with actual still frames and photos from the motion picture (images courtesy of Castle Rock Entertainment and Warner Bros.), this 220A was driven by the lead character in the film, a 1950's-era screenwriter portrayed by Mr. Carrey. Falsely accused of being a communist and blacklisted, Mr. Carrey's character takes a drunken drive up the California coast only to encounter a treacherous bridge and rainstorm which conspire to plunge him and his beloved 220A into a raging river, resulting in the loss of both the automobile and Mr. Carrey's memory. It should be noted that the 220A here was the "hero picture car" driven by Mr. Carrey and was not subjected to the hair-raising bridge stunt - in that sequence the 220A was doubled by several effects-laden stunt cars. (It may be of interest to note that although the automobile had stunt doubles, Mr. Carrey performed his own stunts).
This 220A Cabriolet has been personally owned since January 1999 by the director of The Majestic, Frank Darabont, a three-time Oscar nominee for such films as The Shawshank Redemption and The Green Mile. When it was time to choose an automobile for use in The Majestic, Mr. Darabont, a self-described Mercedes nut, decided to indulge in automotive nepotism and cast his own car in the role. A noted screenwriter as well as director, Mr. Darabont has recently written the screenplay for Indiana Jones 4 which Steven Spielberg is slated to direct in the summer of 2004.
Historically the 220 was based on a strengthened 170S cruciform chassis with wider track, powered by a new 2.2 litre six cylinder engine developing 80bhp at 4,850rpm. Featuring faired-in headlights and more room, the 220 retained the dignified body styling of the 170, and in its performance and behavior it established the character of other Mercedes' to the expense of relatively modest torque at low engine revs. The 220's suspension was similar to that of the 170S, the coil and wishbone front end invariably being described in contemporary reports as a direct development of that on the pre-war Grand Prix cars.
This 220A appears now in lovely condition, with handsome ivory paintwork, navy leather upholstery, complementing navy Wilton carpets, German canvas navy soft top and fitted luggage. The Cabriolet version was always regarded as the luxury model post-war Mercedes, combining classic pre-war styling with sumptuous appointments, and this example has the added attraction of having been a movie star!