FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Below you will find answers to some of our most commonly asked questions.
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There are a number of different indicators used to authenticate original film posters vs. reproductions. Among the factors we take into consideration are size, type of paper stock used and the print quality. In most cases authentication is straightforward, as the vast majority of vintage film posters do not exist in high-quality reproductions (or “bootlegs”). However, there are some titles (“Star Wars” being the most common) and sizes which HAVE been widely reproduced, with print quality that rivals the originals. In these cases, it is necessary to look very closely for the minor differences between the authentic originals and fakes. Our decades of experience in handling thousands of vintage posters help us to spot the fakes and keep them out of our inventory.
Prior to the 1980’s, most posters were issued folded - straight from the printer. While it is possible to find some pre-1980 posters that were never folded (most often the card stock formats: Inserts, Lobby Cards, Half Sheets, Window Cards etc.), these are the exception and not the rule. In most cases, folded posters can be linen-backed, paper-backed or gel sized to flatten the poster and minimize the folds (see below)
These are archival conservation methods used to flatten folded posters and restore damaged posters. When performed by a talented professional, the result is a poster that is easier to frame, displays nicer and may increase in value.
When linen-backing (the most common method used) is performed, the poster is de-acidified and museum-mounted with wheat paste onto acid-free Japanese rice paper and then adhered to canvas.
Paper-backing is similar to linen-backing, but instead of mounting the poster + rice paper to canvas, a heavy (paper) card stock is used.
Gelatin mounting is a relatively new method and offers the least invasive method of flattening and restoration. The poster is mounted and unmounted without any type of backing, yet allowing a base for the replacement of paper, color retouching, flattening, and cleaning.
In most cases, it is easy to date posters - the majority of films were only released once, and the NSS number (which includes the year of release - see below) is printed on most vintage U.S. posters. However some cult films (such as “Harold & Maude”) were either re-released or in more-or-less constant release via college cinema clubs and revival houses. And the most popular films were often re-issued, particularly in the pre-home video age. The Disney animated features were re-released roughly once each generation, and films like “Gone With the Wind” and “Star Wars” were re-issued several times - often with different poster artwork. In Europe and many other parts of the world, many popular film series (particularly the James Bond films and the Sergio Leone & Clint Eastwood trilogy) were not shown on television until relatively recently, and they were re-released to theaters many times. These foreign posters (particularly the Italian and French) can be difficult for a novice to date, but in most cases we are able to accurately date them. When one of our posters has an “RI” after the date, that means the poster is from a reissue, and the date given is the year of that reissue - not the year of the film’s first release. Also, please bear in mind that until fairly recently, the release dates for most films varied considerably from country to country. For example, if a film was produced and released in the USA in 1964, it may not have been released in a major market like France or Japan until a year or two after, and in the case of Eastern European countries, the gap was significantly greater. When identifying the year of the poster on each product page, the stated year is the year of the film’s release in that territory; we will usually indicate the year of its original production in the notes.
NSS stands for National Screen Service - the company that assigned each major film a specific, unique number and was responsible for printing the vast majority of U.S. film posters. For example, the NSS number for “Jaws” was 75/155. This means that it was the 155th film of 1975 that received a number from the National Screen Service, and all posters for Jaws would have 75/155 printed somewhere on the front and sometimes stamped on the reverse. Please note that the NSS stamp on the reverse (which, if done using strong ink can bleed thru somewhat to the front of the poster) can be found on most vintage U.S. 1 Sheet, 3 Sheet & 6 Sheet posters and is not considered a defect; rather, it is a good indicator of authenticity. Finally, please note that if you have a “Jaws” poster, you do not have number 75 out of 155 posters printed for the film. This is a common misconception amongst novice collectors: assuming that the NSS number functions the same as a the number written on a limited-edition fine art print. Thousands of posters were printed for “Jaws”, and 155 is simply the number that the NSS randomly assigned to that film.
Yes, we are always interested in buying vintage film posters - both individually and in large groups/collections. Please note that we are mainly interested in buying the types of posters that you see on the site: we are not in the market for 95% of the posters printed since 1990 or in any type of reproductions.
We very rarely get involved with trades; we have found that it is difficult to put together a deal that benefits both parties. But feel free to give it a shot!
Yes, in most cases we are able to find the poster you are looking for. We have friends and contacts throughout the world, and we are happy to search for anything we don’t currently have in stock.
Yes, in most cases we are able to find the poster you are looking for. We have friends and contacts throughout the world, and we are happy to search for anything we don’t have in stock.
Yes, if you are in Los Angeles we welcome you to make an appointment to visit our showroom in Hollywood. Just send us an email or give us a call to set up a meeting.
We accept all major credit cards, Paypal, wire transfer and money orders. We accept most personal checks but the purchase will be on hold until the funds clear. Your credit card details are safe when purchasing on our site - all transactions are securely processed.
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You may cancel any order and return the item(s), provided you contact us within 7 days of receipt of said items and return the item(s) within 14 days, in the same packaging used to deliver the order. Items must be securely packed and insured: we will not fully refund items that are not returned to us in the same condition as they were when we sent them. The condition must be the same. You are responsible for any return shipping fees, unless an error on our part is responsible for the return. We reserve the right to make final judgments in this regard.
Special orders are not refundable for any reason other that item being not as described. Shipping charges are not refundable. Deposits for lay-away's are not refundable.
Yes, we deliver to most countries. There are some exceptions, and if you live in a country in which we cannot guarantee a safe, secure delivery then we will contact you immediately and refund your payment.
Customers are responsible for any/all import duties. The product prices displayed are exclusive of all taxes and duties. Once your order arrives at its destination you will be required to pay all import duties, customs and local sales taxes levied by the country you are shipping to, in order to release your order from customs. Please bear this in mind, as the amount charged by some countries can be significant and difficult to predict.
All items being shipped to a California address will be required to pay applicable state and local sales tax.
Yes, we offer Fedex and overnight shipping for most items at most times. Contact us for further specific information.
We work with a local framer in the Los Angeles area. Due to the fragile nature of framed posters and the large costs involved, we do not as a rule ship framed posters.
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