DALLAS – A massive six-sheet movie poster for “Casablanca,” one of just two copies known, bid a fond “Here’s looking at you, kid” to its presale estimate of $60,000-plus to
realize $107,550 in Heritage Auctions’ March 23-24 Vintage Movie Poster Signature Auction. Measuring 81 inches by 81 inches, the poster took top lot honors during the event, which brought a total of more than $1.72 million, with 96.4 percent sold by value.
“This is the largest ‘Casablanca’ poster we’ve ever offered at Heritage,” said Grey Smith, director of Movie Posters at Heritage. “It is always a pleasure to manage the sale of a rare find like this six sheet – this was a once in a lifetime opportunity to own this particular poster and the price proves it.”
Several rare posters doubled their estimates, with a one sheet for MGM’s 1932 classic “Tarzan the Ape Man” reaching $65,725 and the poster for D.W. Griffith’s controversial epic “Birth of a Nation,” depicting John Wilkes Booth leaping onto the stage of Ford’s Theater after assassinating President Abraham Lincoln, realizing $47,800.
Collectors remain devoted fans of famous movie monsters, as a CGC graded lobby card for 1931’s “Frankenstein” realized $38,837. Two scarce posters for RKO’s “King Kong” brought impressive prices, as a reissue one sheet on linen fetched $35,850 and a Swedish oversized poster, depicting Kong grappling a biplane and a cringing Fay Wray, brought $26,290. A 1938 reissue poster for Universal’s “Dracula,” sporting a classic visage of Bela Lugosi, sold for $20,315.
Posters for iconic animation sold briskly, as a 1932 Mickey Mouse stock poster commanded $26,680 and a stock poster for 1941’s Superman cartoon series by Paramount/Fleisher Studios sold for $23,900. An impressive six sheet for Columbia’s 1948 Superman live-action serial sold for $15,535.
Additional highlights include, but are not limited to a 1942 one sheet on linen for “Casablanca” ($17,925), a half sheet for the 1927 Buster Keaton classic “The General” ($16,730), a one sheet for 1954’s “Creature From The Black Lagoon” ($15,535) and a graceful Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers helped a gargantuan 24 sheet for 1936’s “Swing Time,” measuring 104 inches by 232 inches, sell for $15,535.
For more information on Heritage Auction Galleries’ regular poster auctions, visit www.ha.com or call 800-872-6467.