Movie Poster Archives – May 2024 Auction
Auction Ends: May 27, 2024 08:00 PM CDT

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MOVIE POSTER ARCHIVES
Online Auction

May 20 - 27

A Message From Our Chief Archivist 

If originality is that important to you -
look at it carefully in the high-resolution images.
Ask questions. I don't mind letting you know
any info that I have on any item.
- Ed Poole, MPA Chief Archivist

Movie Poster Archives is honoring our mission to make people happy--and making space by auctioning duplicates and/or excess items not needed for our programs. Find movie posters, stills, celebrity photos, and more selected from over 3,000,000 items in our repository. The vaults are open to fund our programs for the preservation and study of movie paper, exhibits, and education.

Every item is inspected and evaluated by our archivists Ed and Susan Poole. Their descriptions clearly state what?s known about each item. However, since all items are donated from a wide variety of sources with no providence, please be aware that descriptions are given without any verification or guarantee.

Please feel free to inquire about items that interest you. We will be glad to tell you what we know.

Treasured Historical Artifacts

Movie posters tell us who we are, where we're from, and inspire who we want to be. And they're fun!  

Our purpose is to create a vast digital and physical archive for the preservation and research of movie paper. Movie posters are fragile. They were created as disposable advertising and were never meant to last. Vulnerable to fire, water, sunlight, and the ravages of time, most have disappeared into history.

Movie Posters have an intrinsic value to film enthusiasts, and these fragile relics are a treasure trove for the study of film, art, history, and social attitudes. They illustrate our outlooks on race, women, sexuality, politics, and every other aspect of human endeavor and behavior through the decades.

Shipping is combined and packed with care. 

Please allow 3 to 4 weeks for delivery. We make every effort to securely pack your items and that takes time. Unfortunately, recent changes in the U.S. Postal Service also mean deliveries are taking longer. Feel free to contact us if you are concerned about your shipment.

What You Need to Know About Our Auctions

Shipments come in from all over the world usually without provenance or authentication. We receive hundreds of thousands of items every year. Sorting and cataloging are perpetual activities. Remember, we are a nonprofit repository, not an auction house. Our online auctions augment donations and grants to support preservation, research, education, and exhibition.

That said, here are a few tips to make your bidding more rewarding.

Original or Not

Yes, we do have quite a bit of original material that makes its way into the auction. Here's a fairly simple method to recognize material most likely to be original.

Silent material

We have it - including numerous keybook stills, but we don't put those out in the auction. We have some special projects in the works for those. Stand by for announcements. So, all the silent material in the auction is either later releases or some great high-quality reissues and reprints we have received from donors.

1940s to early 60s

We have numerous available. If the condition is Very Good+ etc., it's mostly likely a later reissue. If you think it is original, look at the paper and condition in the high res (large) image to spot blemishes. That age of material will generally have slight browning, fading, curling, border tears, storage wear, wrinkles, etc., and NOT be in perfect condition. It was a different kind of paper back then without all the high gloss of today.

70s and newer

Harder to tell. We have received numerous boxes direct from the printers addressed to the distributors filled with a single title. Read the descriptions carefully.

For All Years

Read the descriptions. We try to pinpoint, show and describe when there is additional information on the items in the lot, such as stamps, snipes, and/or embossing. They were added by studios, distributors or censors and a great way to tell originality as they are too costly, hard to duplicate, and time-consuming for those printing reprints or fakes.

Also, remember - studio reissues(rereleases) are also originals - not for the original release year of the film but for the year of the studio rerelease and quite often different from material issued in the first release.

Massive Volume

We have now received over 3 million pieces donated from every direction imaginable -- Hollywood shops closing down, dealers, distributors, and even a Cinema International Corporation (CIC) warehouse. We receive everything imaginable from fantastic originals to really cheap copies - and it's all mixed in with NO provenance.

A Message From Our Chief Archivist

So, my advice is: If originality is that important - look at it carefully in the high-resolution images. Ask questions. I don't mind letting you know any info that I have on any item.

- Ed Poole, MPA Chief Archivist