Some Disney movie fans could be sitting on a gold mine in their own homes, and if they are, it’s likely they have no idea. That’s because some of the most valuable pieces of Disney memorabilia are also obsolete, meaning that Disney fans who still own these items probably have them packed away in a box in the attic.
But it might be worth a trip to the attic to see if these items are among those Disney collectibles that have been boxed up over the years.
Disney Movies on VHS: Obsolete But Worth a Fortune
Long before streaming was an option and years before the debut of the first DVD, movie night for Disney fans often involved families gathering around the television, usually in the living room or den of their homes, to watch a beloved Disney movie on VHS played on the VCR.
For years, Disney movies on VHS tapes were the preferred way of watching beloved classic films at home, but now, some of those tapes can be extremely valuable, especially if they are in good condition and meet certain criteria. Just how much are these VHS tapes worth? The amounts vary based on the titles of the tapes and whether they are truly considered collector’s items.
It’s important to note that not all Disney VHS tapes will yield big bucks from collectors. The ones that are valuable meet certain criteria, but for fans who find certain Disney VHS tapes in their attics that meet these criteria, the payout can be impressive.
Disney’s Black Diamond Collection & Insignia
Some of the most valuable Disney films on VHS are those that were included in Disney’s Black Diamond Collection of films between the mid-1980s and the mid-1990s. But not all of Disney’s beloved classics were included in the collection.
The Disney VHS tapes that were designated as part of the collection are those Disney films that were released on VHS between 1984 and 1994. Because there were only certain films that were included, VHS tapes in Disney’s Black Diamond Collection are a favorite among collectors and can be very valuable.
Only 20 of Disney’s beloved classics were inducted into the collection, beginning with Disney’s Robin Hood, originally released in 1973 and released on Disney’s Black Diamond VHS in December 1984, and ending with Disney’s The Fox and the Hound, which was originally released in 1981 and released on Black Diamond VHS in March 1994.
How Do I Know If My Disney VHS Tape Is Part of the Collection?
It’s fairly easy to spot a Disney Black Diamond Collection VHS tape, as the diamond insignia is usually located on the spine of the VHS case.
Sometimes, the insignia is printed directly on the VHS tape itself. VHS tapes marked with the black diamond symbol can be worth $50 to $250 each, depending on the title and the condition of the tape and case.
Only 20 Disney films were released as part of the Black Diamond Collection on VHS. Titles outside of these are not part of Disney’s Black Diamond Collection series. The titles that are included in the collection are as follows:
The Sword in the Stone
Alice in Wonderland
Lady and the Tramp
The Little Mermaid
The Jungle Book
The Rescuers Down Under
The Great Mouse Detective
Beauty and the Beast
The Fox and the Hound
VHS Tapes Marked “A Walt Disney Classic”
Another possible clue that a Disney VHS tape is valuable is the phrase “A Walt Disney Classic” stamped on the tape itself, often just above the title of the movie.
Some VHS copies of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast have been found with this stamp, and those that bear both the Black Diamond Collection insignia and the stamp can be extremely valuable.
Disney VHS Tapes With Cover Art That Was Changed
Disney VHS tapes can also be valuable if they feature a rare or discontinued print on the cover. Some of Disney’s movies on VHS underwent changes to their cover art while still on the shelves for sale.
The most notable example of this was Disney’s The Little Mermaid. When the VHS tapes of the film were initially released, they featured cover art that was later banned. Because of this, the artwork had to be changed, and as such, VHS copies of The Little Mermaid with the original cover art are very rare and, therefore, very valuable.
In early December 2023, a copy of Disney’s The Little Mermaid with the original cover art on the case was listed at $3,200, and a current item on eBay with the original artwork on the VHS case is listed at $5,000.
Which Disney VHS Tape is Worth the Most Money?
So, out of all of Disney’s beloved movies that were produced and distributed on VHS cassette, which is the most valuable? According to TheGamer.com, the most valuable of all of Disney’s VHS tapes is the Black Diamond Collection edition of Disney’s 101 Dalmatians, which was originally released in 1961.
A current listing on Etsy for the VHS cassette is set at $25,000, but the specific version of the 1961 canine classic is more appropriately valued at as much as $6,000, provided owners can find a collector willing to pay that much for it.
Do you have any of these VHS tapes in your attic? Or have you been lucky enough to cash in on any of them in the past? Let us know in the comments section below!