Couple’s $10 movie poster brings $107,550

DALLAS – A vintage movie poster purchased for $10 in a Southern California antiques store in the early 1970s was sold for $107,550 in a public auction in Dallas, Texas, on March 21. The determined winning bidder said he’s wanted to add it to his collection for years. The winning bidder is a retired financial executive on the East Coast and a long-time collector.

“It’s a rare poster for the 1932 MGM film, Freaks. The movie was pulled from release by the studio, but became a cult classic after it was re-released by an independent distributor in 1949,” said Grey Smith, director of Vintage Movie Posters at Heritage Auction Galleries.

Anne Stafford of Corona Del Mar, Calif., the consignor, said she agonized over spending $10 in the early 1970s to buy the poster at an antiques store for her husband, Phil. “Freaks is a film that I loved and always wanted a poster from it. Even in this economy, great things bring great prices,” he said after the auction. The bidder also won the 1931 Dracula poster for $310,700. That poster is from the collection of actor Nicolas Cage.

“We expected the bidding for this poster to top $50,000, but were amazed when it went over $100,000,” said Smith.

The two-day auction in Dallas and on line generated $2.5 million in winning bids, the second highest movie posters auction on record, according to Heritage. The prices above include a 19 1/2-percent buyer’s premium paid by all winning bidders in the auction.

For additional information, call 800-872-6467 or visit