Wondering how much your old Lion King, Dumbo, Bambi, The Little Mermaid or Cinderella or other Disney VHS tape is worth these days???
Well, according to this article from Snopes.com, your Disney tapes are probably worth something, but old Disney VHS values are not remotely close to as much as has been widely reported.
Over the past few months, I have seen a number of posts on blogs and news sites reporting that rare “Black Diamond” editions of the Disney classics on VHS were going for thousands of dollars on eBay. This was due to the rarity of the series of tapes.
But if you visit pretty much any thrift store in America, you will see shelves and shelves full of these cassettes. So what gives?
Snopes points out in their investigative piece that, while there are a number of Black Diamond listings for thousands of dollars on eBay, there are only few that have fetched over $20. Thus indicating that it is a case of hopeful suppliers and uninterested buyers. They further explain that the Disney Black Diamond VHS tapes are not exactly rare, but are becoming collectible.
What are Disney Black Diamond VHS Tapes?
The Disney ‘Black Diamond’ collection refers to the original Walt Disney Classics series of Disney VHS tapes that were released between 1984-1994. They were noted for their Walt Disney Classics logo, which was shaped as a black diamond and could be found on the spine of the tape case. In all, 20 different animated Disney movies were included in the collection with the first five being released twice during the ten year span.
Our friends at Yesterworld have created this amazing video which discusses the entire history of the Disney Vault and the various VHS and DVD releases over the years.
List of Disney Black Diamond VHS Releases (VHS Release Date):
- Robin Hood (1984)
- Pinocchio (1985)
- Dumbo (1985)
- Sword in the Stone (1986)
- Alice in Wonderland (1986)
- Sleeping Beauty (1986)
- Lady and the Tramp (1987)
- Cinderella (1988)
- Bambi (1989)
- The Little Mermaid (1990)
- Peter Pan (1990)
- The Jungle Book (1991)
- Alice in Wonderland (2nd release, 1991)
- Dumbo (2nd release, 1991)
- Robin Hood (2nd release, 1991)
- The Sword in the Stone (2nd release, 1991)
- The Rescuers Down Under (1991)
- Fantasia (1991)
- 101 Dalmatians (1992)
- The Great Mouse Detective (1992)
- The Rescuers (1992)
- Beauty and the Beast (1992)
- Pinocchio (2nd release, 1993)
- Aladdin (1993)
- The Fox and the Hound (1994)
Spoiler: Pre-Owned, these movies generally sell for between $2-$10.
All hope is not lost. As we all know, just about everything goes up in value over time, so these Disney VHS tapes may not be worth that much now, but keep them and eventually they will. Additionally, many of these movies are getting remade by Disney. We’ve already seen remakes of Beauty and the Beast, The Jungle Book, Dumbo and Aladdin. One can imagine, this remake trend will rekindle interest in the classics, pushing the value of these tapes higher.
And now a word from a professional ebay reseller(me):
It should be noted that there ARE Disney VHS tapes worth money on the secondary market. Just not the ones you would think about. The best way to find out what is truly worth money is to look at ebay’s recently sold listings. Based on what I am seeing in November 2021, here are the Disney VHS tapes you should be on the lookout for:
- Anything still factory sealed sells for a premium; even more so with watermarks on the seal
- Disney’s Very Merry Christmas Sing Along Songs in Clamshell (Blue Tape) – Sold for $33.83
- My Date With the President’s Daughter – Sold for $65
- Sleeping Beauty 1997 – Sold for $24.97
- Song of the South (Made in England) – Sold for $84.95
- Model Behavior – Sold for $29.99
- Winnie the Pooh Limited Edition Masterpiece: – Sold for $39.99
- Disney’s The Little Mermaid Masterpiece Collection, Special Edition – Sold for $999
- Disney’s Recess – Sold for $49.49
In the meantime, you have a great video on your hands. Grab some popcorn and enjoy it! (if you still have a VHS player)