Once upon a time, before streaming services and Blu-rays, people used to watch movies via VHS tapes. No, the films weren't in high-resolution, and you had to rewind them before being able to watch them again, but they did bring the magical world of Disney to our TVs.
If you were anything like my family, you had stacks upon stacks of classic and new Disney movies on VHS ready to play at any time.
However, when the VCR became a thing of the past, many families might have decided to toss their tapes in the trash or sell them in a garage sale. Maybe you upgraded to the DVD version, or came to the realization that you are now too old to watch Aladdin and The Little Mermaid in your free time (you are never too old for Disney).
Or maybe you have a box of these collecting dust in the attic somewhere. If you do, it's time to dig them out, because you are sitting on a gold mine.
Apparently, there is high demand for the original VHS versions of these old Disney movies, and those who are selling them are making a pretty penny off of them.
In fact, if you happen to own this particular Disney favorite, then you may just have hit the jackpot.
According to eBay listings, the 1992 animated film Beauty and the Beast is going for just under $10,000. It's not because the live-action reboot, starring Emma Watson, is coming out next year. This VHS is selling for so much because it is rare.
The versions of Beauty and the Beast that are listed for $5K and up are those that are part of the rare "Black Diamond Collection." This collection features 18 animated features from 1988 to about 1993 that were first released for VHS. These editions come in a clamshell case and have a logo in the shape of a black diamond that says "The Classics" on its spine.
Pointed out by redditor Reddit_Executive, the logo and Walt Disney signature next to it was used to help market the home videos. "Because of this, certain Disney collectors are convinced that these VHS tapes are worth something."
Beauty and the Beast was one of these films to get this seal. If you have the tape, which originally retailed for $20, you could make thousands of dollars — and the price only goes up if it's still in its packaging.
Don't worry if you were banking on selling your copy of the VHS, only to find it's missing from your collection. Other Disney movies part of this collection are also being sold for impressive prices.
The Black Diamond Collection version of The Little Mermaid is going for over $8,000, and The Lion King for more than $4,000, but Aladdin is less in demand with the max of making $500, whereas Dumbo will only get you $100.
Ah, the magic of Disney.
Photo: Rhys A. | Flickr