A man in New Zealand bought a modest house for $100,000 dollars only to discover a hidden stash of horror film posters worth five times that amount.
The cache, which was found in a wall cavity when renovations were being done, was made up of Universal horror ‘half sheet’ posters including The Bride of Frankenstein (1935).
“Horror posters are the most collected type of movie poster on the market,” says Bruce Marchant, who amassed the works as a collector and entered into the business of selling these intriguing and, sometimes, seemingly lost posters in 1991.
Reel Poster Gallery
Reel Poster Gallery
1/9 A Midsummer Night's Dream (1935)
German release poster with art by Moje Aslund (dates unknown); there are fewer than five known surviving examples known
2/9 4th San Francisco Film Festival (1960)
Outstanding and rare original poster by legendary poster artist Saul Bass (1920 - 1996)
3/9 The Wizard of Oz (1939)
Believed to be the only surviving British release poster of this enduringly iconic film
4/9 To Have and Have Not (Italian release 1948)
Original Italian release poster with art by Luigi Martinati (1893 - 1984); believed to be the only surviving example on the market today
5/9 The Party (1968)
A Peter Sellers classic captured in this one-of-a-kind original artwork (gouache on board) by Jack Davis
6/9 Fistful of Dollars (1964)
Rare advance poster capturing Clint Eastwood before the star was famous; this film also marked the dawn of the Spaghetti Western era
7/9 Cleopatra (1917)
One of fewer than four surviving examples, this Swedish poster is one of the last remaining relics of Theda Bara as Cleopatra - the film itself was destroyed under the Hays Code in the 1930s due to erotic imagery
8/9 Citizen Kane (1941)
Rare Swedish poster promoting Orson Welles's debut film which he wrote, starred in, and directed; this piece is the only example the gallery has ever seen
9/9 Cabin in the Sky (1943)
Original American release poster with art by Albert Hirschfeld (1903 - 2003); the piece is one of fewer than 20 examples remaining today and is signed by the artist
He tells another unusual tale about an extremely rare American poster for The Devil is the Woman (1935) starring Marlene Dietrich.
At first he was suspicious of the poster because it had been rolled up. Apparently, until the 1970s movie posters were always folded, he reveals.
“It turns out, the poster had come direct from its printer - a gentleman who had loved the design so much he rolled it away and stored it safe from harm,” he says.
“Some 60 years later the children of the printer found it, and not knowing what it was, sent it to auction where it fetched in excess of $30,000."
Marchant’s Reel Poster Gallery is exhibiting at this year’s London Art Fair, the Business Design Centre, Islington, from 21-25 January 2015, www.londonartfair.co.uk.Reuse content