Scary, meaning spooky and eerie; additionally-vintage movie posters can be worth scary, big bucks!!
Before television, the internet, and the World Wide Web ever existed; the only way to see the preview to an upcoming movie, was via a film studio movie poster. Well-known artists and illustrators, worked their magic to create colorful artwork and imagery on paper, in hopes of luring the public to want to see the next newly produced film, vaudeville show, or event. Even if the movie itself was in black and white-the movie poster’s art needed to portray the leading characters/stars in a powerful way, with colorful art techniques that were enticing and mesmerizing. Posters came in different sizes (sheet size) and thicknesses. The early American posters were produced in one-sheet sizes (27″ x 41″); but also quite collectible are the two-sheet, subway horizontal posters-which are made with a thicker paper (41″ x 54″ or 45″ x 60″), and the vertical-three-sheet size (41″ x 81′). Also half-sheet and larger billboard sizes were produced.
Most Advertising Posters Were Destroyed
Unfortunately, because paper was needed during WWII, most paper posters were recycled, so today its hard to find original pre-WWII movie posters. In fact, most posters made in America, were usually returned to a nation wide program called the National Screen Service, a.k.a. the NSS. From 1940-1984, the NSS printed and distributed most of the film posters for Hollywood and other movie studio locations.
When it came to horror movie flicks, illustrators needed to have quite a vivid imagination, as well as artist skills. Fortunately for them, film-goers were ready and willing to see what might be the next horror flick coming attraction.
Going to scary movies was the latest rage during the mid-century years, and still are to this day! Let’s face it, every now and then, we all want to feel just a little scared or fearful. Seeing a horror movie is simply a way to experience-safe emotional and physical fears- without the possibility of any real consequences. This feeling causes our hearts to beat just a little bit faster. This feeling is sort of like anxiously awaiting in line to ride the newest wild amusement park ride. Hollywood movie makers cashed in on those fears.
Some of my favorite horror flicks to watch at the local cinema, were the Hammer “Dracula” vampire series, which starred the actor Christopher Lee as the creepy seducing- but kinda sexy – vampire.
The most favored Count Dracula character, was portrayed by-of course-Bela Lugosi (Birth name-Béla Ferenc Dezsõ Blaskó. Born in Romania, 1882-1956) This vampire definitely had strange mesmerizing eyes that seemed almost hypnotic when watching him.
Original ’30s Bela Lugosi movie posters can fetch in the thousands.
This 1931 “Dracula” movie poster was sold in 2009 for over $310,000. It was sent to the auction house by the actor Nicolas Cage who obviously had quite a fascination for creepy horror movie posters.
In 2012, a man in Berwick, Pennsylvania– discovered thirty-three old movie posters behind a wall in his home. The posters had been held together with wallpaper glue and had been used as insulation in the home’s attic. These posters were meticulously separated and sold at an auction house for over $500,000. (Now, that’s what I call a treasure trove.)
Indeed, 1920s-1940s- original movie posters are rare finds, but they could be found rolled-up under old basement staircases, or in the corner of an attic…You never know where you might find the next hidden treasure.