Affectionately known as ‘The Collector,’ Barry Weiss made his mark in the world as one of the seven pioneers of A&E’s massively popular reality TV series “Storage Wars”. Having initially been featured in the series from season one through four, starting on 1 December 2010, Barry stood out due to his unique personality, and a keen eye for valuable items hidden in storage units.
Known for his eccentric personality and unique approach to bidding, Barry’s unique presence built him up into a fan favorite overnight. It seemed that his abrupt departure prior to the fifth season was the last anyone would see of him under that title, but fate turned out to have different things in store for both him and the audience.
The show featured some of its pioneers in its 14th season in 2021 as well, though with only four of the original seven still present at the time. Surprising to most viewers, Weiss was indeed among them, in spite of having been excluded from nine preceding installments.
As the fans eagerly await the unraveling of the 15th season, many wonder whether Weiss will continue to be featured on their TV screens, or will he yet again fade into obscurity out of the blue. The reality star’s dealings in 2023 are thus of importance to millions around the world, and it doesn’t look like they will be disappointed to learn what he is up to.
The glorious success of a great idea
“Storage Wars” is a reality TV franchise that originated in the US, and first aired on the A&E network. Its inception dates back over 13 years, and it quickly gained popularity due to its unique premise and engaging format.
The show revolves around the auctioning of storage units the rent of which hasn’t been paid, with the bidders not knowing what exactly lies within the small spaces that they are bidding on. This element of surprise and the potential for discovering valuable items made the show a hit among viewers.
Their unwavering interest is also not very difficult to grasp, as the show somewhat re-invented gambling. The participants are essentially paying for a superficial look at each individual pile, most of the time having little to no certainty of even just getting back only what they invested.
The greatest pleasure for most viewers is contained in the ‘storage warriors’ appraising the various trinkets dug out of normally unassuming sundry piles, which had on occasion turned out to have significant value.
The success of the original series led to the creation of several spin-offs as well, thanks to the fans being too insatiable for just one title to fill their needs. The first of these was “Storage Wars: Texas,” which aired from 6 December 2011 to 7 January 2014. The show followed a similar format, but was set in the southernmost US state, where the laws and potential items are somewhat different. One of the buyers from this show, Mary Padian, later joined the cast of the original.
“Storage Wars: New York” was the second spin-off, premiering on 1 January 2013. This series ran for two seasons, concluding on 8 November 2013. The franchise then expanded internationally with “Storage Wars Canada,” which aired from 29 August 2013 to 22 June 2015 – it was later aired in the US as “Storage Wars: Northern Treasures.”
Who really is Barry Weiss?
Born on 11 February 1951, Barry developed a passion for antique collecting from a very young age. This passion fully flourished when he was just 15 years old, and ended up shaping his career and public persona.
Weiss and his brother established a successful wholesale produce business way before television fame. Their venture thrived for over 25 years, amassing a fortune that allowed Barry to retire and indulge in his love of travel and exploration.
Barry returned home after years of checking the many nooks and crannies of the world, with his long-standing interest in antiques and collectibles rekindled on US soil. He began to invest in unique and valuable items with previous career earnings at his disposal, many of which he chose to keep rather than sell.
The future star’s eccentric personality and extensive knowledge of antiques caught the attention of Thom Beers, the executive producer of “Storage Wars”, which led to his casting in the series, in which he effortlessly stood out.
Given legendary repute by his ever-growing fanbase, Barry was renowned for his unconventional approach to storage auctions. From advanced strategies such as using night vision goggles, to ludicrous superstition such as employing psychics to ask the spirits about the contents of the lockers, he was always ready to think outside the box, to gain an edge in bidding.
Barry’s time in “Storage Wars” initially spanned from 2010 to 2013, but that was only the beginning of his rise to stardom. His unique personality and approach to auctions made him an indispensable character, leading to his own spin-off series, “Barry’d Treasure” in 2014, and “Storage Wars: Barry Strikes Back” in 2015. These shows followed Barry as he traveled across the country in search of rare collectibles and antiques, with his unique spin on these endeavors being the entire focus of the narrative.
Regardless of his success in “Storage Wars,” and to the shock of his many fans’, Barry’s earnings from the show were not as high as some of his co-stars. This was primarily because he often chose to keep the items he won at auctions, refusing to sell them as that would part him from their true value.
Watch as Barry and Brandi learn all the ways you can tie a tie.
Posted by Storage Wars on A&E on Tuesday, July 19, 2022
A collector through and through
Barry’s love for unique items extended beyond antiques to include classic cars. His collection of vehicles is reportedly worth about $500,000, a clear display of his eclectic tastes. One of his most famous vehicles is a 1947 Custom Cowboy Cadillac, which was frequently featured in “Storage Wars.”
His 2004 Rolls-Royce is an epitome of luxury, that was discovered in a forgotten storage unit in Florida. Although sold for only $7,000, this space concealed a gem that exudes elegance and sophistication. The Rolls-Royce, known for its timeless design and unparalleled comfort, was a delightful surprise for its fascinated new owner.
Weiss also owns a Lincoln-Zephyr, acquired for $55,000 in 2013, which underwent a transformation with a sleek black paint job and other modifications. The Lincoln-Zephyr, with its streamlined design and powerful engine, saw its value increase significantly after renovation, which speaks volumes of the reality star’s knack for enhancing the value of his finds.
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A certain DeLorean DMC-12 is highly celebrated among his possessions too, thanks to its futuristic design and iconic gull-wing doors. Being a symbol of 1980s pop culture, it most definitely added a touch of nostalgia to Barry’s collection. However, it’s worthy of mention that the vehicle is only attractive for its appearance, while the specifications of its parts are heavily outweighed by modern cars.
Finally, it looks like Weiss has an uncontrollable love for the Batman franchise, as he owns a Tim Burton Batmobile. He drove it in an exclusive episode of “Barry’d Treasure,” which came as a shock to many fans who thought the star incapable of affording such luxuries.
Who absolutely isn’t Barry Weiss?
In the world of entertainment, it’s not uncommon for two individuals with the same name to be mistaken for each other. This is the case with Barry Weiss, who is a renowned music producer and has nothing to do with “Storage Wars” whatsoever. The confusion between these two personalities has led to a common misconception that gets the wealth of the music producer attributed to the storage unit-hunting Barry Weiss.
“Storage Wars” Barry’s much more successful counterpart has had a long and prominent career, working with some of the biggest names in music. He was the CEO of The Island Def Jam Music Group and Universal Republic Records from 2011 to 2014.
He served as president of Jive Records for over 20 years before that, where he was instrumental in the careers of a number of major artists, including Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, and R. Kelly. His success in the music industry earned him a substantial net worth, estimated to be $10 million.
This affluence is frequently and completely inaccurately attributed to the reality TV star by less authoritative media sources, who is factually much less wealthy. That said, it makes sense to assume that having an impressive car collection indeed comes with very deep pockets, in spite of the real truth.
Even after more than 25 years of running a business and turning great profits in “Storage Wars,” the less prestigious Barry Weiss has a long way to go to accumulate $10 million in his bank account.
Did he get hurt? What happened?
Barry was involved in a serious motorcycle accident in April 2019, in Los Feliz, a neighborhood of Los Angeles, California. Weiss was riding his motorcycle with a friend when they were hit by a car pulling out of a parking space, whose driver didn’t seem capable of seeing them rush towards it. The accident was quite serious, causing multiple injuries to Weiss, including broken bones and chest and leg injuries.
Barry was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU). His condition was initially critical, but he was stabilized by a well-trained medical team. The accident resulted in the reality TV star suffering from severe chest and leg trauma, which required multiple surgeries. His friend, who was also involved in the accident, suffered minor injuries in comparison.
Weiss’s recovery process was a long and challenging journey, since he ultimately spent two months in the hospital, undergoing several surgeries and extensive physical therapy. Despite the severity of his physical setbacks, Weiss showed remarkable resilience and determination in his recovery. His progress was steady, and he was eventually able to leave the hospital.
The accident had a significant impact on Weiss’s life, as he had to retreat from show business for a while. It was perhaps sheer luck that the documentary film entitled “Beverly Hills Garage – The Bruce Meyer Project” was released in the same year, featuring Weiss alongside other eccentric car enthusiasts.
A spooky and well-worthy find
Barry made a rather eerie discovery that has left viewers in shock on 14 June 2023. He spotted an unusual wooden statue peeking out of a box in a storage container, which immediately piqued his interest. Amused by the sight of an open mouth with teeth, he decided to claim the object, revealing it to be a one-of-a-kind wooden head with a scene carved into it. The item, which Weiss described as “something real special,” featured real dentures and glass eyes, adding to its uncanny appearance.
It subsequently turned out to be a piece of art by Mike Medow, and despite its creepy appearance, was valued at a whopping $6,000, and possibly even more. Weiss had only paid $1,525 to win the bidding on the storage locker, making this find a rather profitable one. However, instead of selling the unique piece, Weiss has decided to keep it, a decision that baffled many viewers.
The wooden head has since become a topic of discussion on social media, with fans expressing their horror and fascination. Some have described it as one of the creepiest objects they’ve ever seen, while others have admitted that they would be terrified to encounter it in the dark.
So, what’s he up to today?
Thanks to returning to television after making a full recovery, Barry has also been involved in the 15th season of “Storage Wars,” as well as the previous one. The show returned with a bang, featuring the same high-stakes bidding wars and intriguing finds that fans have come to love. Barry, with his knack for spotting hidden treasures and his entertaining antics, has been a key part of the series’ continued success.
Season 15 has been packed with memorable moments and surprising discoveries that Weiss thrives on. From rare collectibles to valuable antiques, the storage units have yielded a wealth of treasures that have kept viewers hooked.
The dynamic between the cast members, including the friendly rivalries and occasional tensions, has added an extra layer of entertainment to the show. Barry, with his laid-back attitude and sharp eye for value, has once again proven to be very easy to connect with, even for an audience that is now much greater than during his debut.
2023 has overall been a busy year for Barry, as he’s either adding to his impressive car collection or hunting for treasures on the TV screen. Weiss undoubtedly continues to pursue his passions with enthusiasm and a unique flai,r that makes him a standout figure in both the car collecting and reality TV worlds.