Animation artwork from Disney's 1989 hit, "The Little Mermaid," brought a total of $1,237,940 at auction at Sotheby's in New York over the weekend, exceeding pre-sale estimates by 10 times in some instances. All but 10 of the 283 lots of cels and backgrounds sold.
A cel-and-background setup of Ariel, the title character, combing her hair with a fork to the bewilderment of Prince Eric and his tutor, Grimsby, sold for $25,300--five times its estimate of $5,000 to $7,000. A setup of Ariel with Sebastian, Scuttle and Flounder also sold for $25,300, 10 times its estimated price of $2,500 to $3,500. A cel and background of Ariel surrounded by her mermaid sisters, estimated at $5,000 to $7,000, went for $24,500.