Horror film posters: it’s a mystery why some collectors are willing to pay thousands of dollars. What do they do with it if they manage to obtain it, either in an auction or through specialist dealers ? Put it in a bank vault ? Or have it framed and hung in their bedrooms ? So they can have a last look at the Mummy or Dracula before they go to sleep? Posters with menacing images from the movie are very popular, particularly if the film is a classic.
Condition of horror film posters
Condition is very important when looking at old horror posters. However, it is difficult to find an old horror movie poster in perfect condition. Moreover, it is better to look into the possibility of restoration of defects by a specialist. Horror movies were made even at the time of silent films. The oldest horror movie, ‘Nosferatu’ was made in 1922. ‘Faust’ came out in 1926. The more menacing or frightening the artwork to advertise a movie, the better. A movie poster can make or break a movie even before the movie itself appears. A poster of the 1932 movie ‘The Mummy’ starring Boris Karloff went up for auction recently with an astronomical asking price. It failed to sell.
A record for Horror Posters
A year or two ago a record was set for the poster of ‘London after Midnight’ dated 1927. A movie full of murders, vampires and hypnotists. Having an estimated sale price of $40,000, it was sold to an anonymous buyer for $478,000. It was the only known poster still in existence. Its appeal therefore was its rarity, one of the most sought-after posters of the century. One of only two original posters of horror movie ‘Dracula’ set a world record of $525,800 in an auction last year. The actor was Bela Lugosi and on the poster had a very menacing expression.
Forgeries of Horror film posters
Forgeries are fairly rare and can usually be identified. Better to buy from a reputable auction house or specialist dealer.
An original poster of ‘Jaws’ from 1975 has an estimated value of approximately $600. Another is a rare 1960 poster advertising ‘Psycho’. It shows Alfred Hitchcock warning cinema goers not to miss the beginning of the movie. Its estimated value is over $1,000.
Other horros posters to look out for
Of course there are hundreds of cheap reproductions on offer. However the value of original horror posters is continually increasing. Such as that for ‘Diabolique’ (1955), ‘The Exorcist’ (1973), ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ (1968). Or earlier movies such as ‘Body Snatchers’ (1956). And keep a look out for ‘Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’ from 1931. To conlcud, why not go off and have a good laugh watching Mel Brooks’ lovely film ‘Frankenstein Junior’ and forget all those creepy creatures ?