Posts Tagged ‘Google’

If Something Is Too Good…

July 7, 2011

In April, a Federal judge postponed a status hearing regarding a Georgia man who sold counterfeit movie posters. According to a news story in the Athens (Ga) Banner-Herald, Kerry Haggard of Commerce, Ga was indicted on mail fraud charges for selling fake vintage horror movie posters. While it was good that this person was caught, there are still others out there who have the means and the guts to pass off fake movie posters as real. So, it is important to be vigilant. In that vein, here are some tips to keep in mind when buying a movie poster. Yes, I’ve covered this subject before, but it never hurts to get a reminder.

Know What You Are Buying
Do as much research as you can on the poster you want to purchase. Google images of the poster and search for information about the movie in question. Sometimes the actors pictured or other features in the poster can increase or decrease the value. The more you know about the poster, the less likely you are to be fooled by a fake.

One place to learn about movie posters is the website for the Movie Poster Grading Company ( The website has a list of known fake movie posters. So, it is a good idea to check out this site before you buy a movie poster. This company was established so that movie posters can be authenticated with a tamper proof tag that lists identifying aspects of the poster such as the title, size, grading, history and other information.

Ask Questions Of The Seller
A reputable seller, whether online or bricks and mortar welcomes any and all questions, even the dumb ones. If you aren’t getting any answers, you don’t like the answers you are getting or you have a feeling that something isn’t right, don’t deal with the seller.

If Something Is Too Good…
The saying is cliché and it is still true. If you find a Bride of Frankenstein movie poster at a flea market, more likely than not, it is a fake. If someone offers to sell you a Casablanca movie poster for $99.99, more likely than not, it is a fake. Note: Bride of Frankenstein is a rare movie poster. The Style E version, of which there is only one in existence, (pictured below)

was to expected to sell at auction in 2010 for $700,000, but it failed to make reserve. So, it didn’t sell. As for Casablanca, a one sheet (27 x 41 inches) poster sold at auction in 2005 for $20,700. (pictured below)

While technology can make it easier to produce a fake movie poster, educating yourself can go a long way in preventing you from being fooled by those who sell fakes.

Of course, my advice remains to not to purchase a movie poster for investment purposes, rather to purchase it for your own personal enjoyment. You can’t go wrong when you buy something that you like.

NOTE: I am not endorsing any company that authenticates movie posters.  The  movie poster authenticating company mentioned in this blog entry was listed for informational purposes only.



Movie Poster Exhibits

May 19, 2011

I read of two exhibits of movie posters that I want to share with you.

One exhibit called, Foyer Entertainment: Movie Lobby Cards from the 1930s-1960s at the Main Branch of the Free Library of Philadelphia and it features lobby cards, which are 11 x14 size movie posters that were place in theatre foyers and inside the theater itself. These lobby cards were in use until the mid 1980’s. What ended their use was a combination of the demise of second run movie theaters and theater owners preference for one sheet movie posters. The exhibit runs until June 17.

Another exhibit called, Remember When: Marvels and Memories from the Collection of Dr. James Clark, at the Tyler Museum of Art in Tyler, Texas, is an exhibition of over 300 artifacts, mostly movie posters and other memorabilia of Tyler area plastic surgeon Dr. James Clark. Dr. Clark got his start in collecting when he was in high school. He had a job in a local movie theater and one of his duties was to remove posters when a film’s run had ended. Of course, the rest is history. This exhibit runs until August 14.

Here are two exhibits featuring movie posters, running independently of each other and as you can guess, I’m pleased to learn of these exhibits. After all, I’m not the only one who thinks movie posters are works of art. Just Google movie posters and you’ll find loads of websites and blogs (other than mine) that showcase movie posters.

The good thing about these exhibits is that they are displaying movie posters in the real world. While you can learn about them on the Internet (which is what I do), if you want to see these exhibits, you have to go to an actual place to see these movie posters (which is what I hope to do for the exhibit in Philadelphia). Yes, it is fun to see all sorts of movie posters from the classics to fan-created masterpieces on the Internet, still seeing a movie poster in person is what really gets the gray matter going. You’re seeing the actual movie poster, not a 150 x 200 pixel representation. You get a chance to see the details that a computer screen can’t provide.

So, if you live near the places where these exhibits are taking place, get out and see these movie posters for yourself. If you don’t live near the museums that have these exhibits, get out any way. As great as the Internet is, it doesn’t beat getting out of the house and experiencing life in the real world.


What To Look For When Buying A Movie Poster

March 31, 2010

Since I sell movie posters, I’ve learned a few things about what to look for when buying a movie poster and I want to share them with you. My tips are for those who are buying a poster via an Internet auction site, like eBay or Movie Poster Bid. Still, they are applicable for an offline purchase, as well.

Learn the lingo
If a seller states that he or she is selling a Midget Window Card or a Lobby Card and you have no idea what those things are, do a little research. Since you are spending your hard earned money on something, know what you are buying. Google any other unfamiliar terms to find out what they mean. FYI: A Midget Window Card is a 8 x 14 inch movie poster. It is a smaller version of the movie’s One Sheet poster, which is 27 x 40 inches, and it was used as a promotional item. The studios distributed the Midget Window Cards from 1932 to 1947. So, if you get your hands on a Midget Window Cards, know that you have something that is very rare. As for the Lobby Cards, you are going to have to look that up on your own.

Ask questions
If you can’t find what you are looking for or if there is anything you aren’t sure of, ask questions.  Ask questions of the seller and again go on Google and look up people who can give you the information that you need. Also, get second and possibly third opinions. Don’t stop until you get your answer. If you don’t get an answer, then go elsewhere for the item. On a related note, don’t feel that you are bothering the seller with your questions. As a seller of movie posters myself, I welcome questions. To me, questions are a sign that someone is interested in an item and is very close to making a purchase. So, you can ask me as many questions as you want, I won’t get annoyed.

Expect some condition issues

Movie posters are made of paper and they aren’t always treated with care. So, expect pinholes, creases, small tears and for older posters, some discoloration. If a poster looks pristine for its age, particularly if it is 10 years old or older, chances are that it is a reproduction. If the seller clearly states that the item in question is a reproduction, don’t feel like you are being cheated. Technology is such that you can get a high quality reproduction of a movie poster at a good price.

Know when things were done
Taking One Sheet movie posters as an example, One Sheet posters were printed on both sides starting in 1990. This is done so that when the posters are put in lighted display case, the poster colors stand out. So, if you run across a One Sheet movie poster from 1990 or later and it is not double sided, it is either a reproduction or a video/DVD release poster.

Deal with a reputable seller
Related to asking questions, if you are buying from an online seller, look for lots of positive comments. The more positive comments from different people, the better. If you are dealing with a seller offline, get recommendations from friends or go to Google, to do a little research on the seller. If after doing research, still aren’t sure about the seller, try someone else.  Of course, it is always good to remember two things when it comes to making purchases:

1)    If something seems too good to be true, it probably is.
2)    You lost nothing if you walk away from a deal you don’t feel good about with your money still in your pocket.

Source: Heritage Magazine “Mini Movie Posters” page 25, Summer 2008