For the second season premiere of Syfy’s showbiz memorabilia show Hollywood Treasure (airing May 22 at 10 p.m. ET), Sean Astin worked with appraiser and show host Joe Maddalena to refurbish his helmet from his 1993 sports film classic Rudy. When Astin was approached about the show, which includes auctions of major pop-culture artifacts, the actor tells EW that he was “a little wary — I didn’t want to sell anything.” But, he says, then he learned the show isn’t just about money. “It’s also about appreciating the nature of the memorabilia, where it comes from and why it’s so meaningful to people,” he says. Which lead Astin to bring in some of the Lord of the Rings gear given to him by director Peter Jackson when the Oscar-winning trilogy concluded filming, and show them off to Maddalena.
Check out an exclusive clip of the moment below:
Astin has long collected mementos from his films — everything from the One-Eyed Willie treasure map from The Goonies to the backs of the director’s chairs with his name on them. (His wife Christine keeps most of it “nicely tucked away” in a storage locker.) One of his favorite items, though, isn’t technically from a movie: It’s all the Lord of the Rings fan art sent to him over the years. “I have tons of poems and drawings and songs and DVDs, little dolls dressed up as Samwise,” he says. “I feel like it’s wrong to throw that away.”
Astin knows, though, that a great deal of his collection is worth a pretty penny. “While I probably wouldn’t ever want to sell anything,” he says, “[Maddalena said] you could probably put a couple of the children I have through college if you wanted to let go of the letterman jacket you wore in [Rudy].” Well, if he could find the letterman jacket, that is. Astin doesn’t know where it is — his wife thinks he gave it away.
“When I told Joe that, he fell on the floor,” says Astin. “He said it would’ve been worth an extraordinary sum. I’m not sure it’s actually been given away, but Christine thinks that I gave it to somebody for an auction for a charity of some kind.” He laughs. “You know, what are you going to do?”