Movie Poster Collecting: A Guide for Beginners

Everyone loves movies. A great way to collect merchandise and movie collectibles is to buy posters of your favorite films that you can frame and display in your home. For collectors of movie memorabilia, collecting original movie posters is a fun way to own a part of film history.

Where to Start

Start with the movies you love. If you love a particular genre, it will be the theme of your collection. Learn about the terminology of poster collection. Learn what an original, reprint, US-one-sheet, international, and British quad are. Learn to distinguish between these and a double-sided, which is a print with the art printed on both sides for the purpose of illumination in a display case.

Plan your budget. Make it no more than 20% of your disposable income. Research where to buy them. Compare the prices. Learn the market value. After you purchase them, you will want to find an archival quality acid-free storage place out of direct sunlight. If you decide to hang them on the wall, do not use tape. Have them framed and hung with care.  

Movie Posters Are Art

Movie posters are art. They say something about the culture you live in. The best movie posters will tell a bit of the story that the movie. The more graphic and colorful the better. Look for full one-sheet examples that are originals. The most sought out movie posters from early film history are valued like works of art and fetch high prices in auctions.

Movie Posters Are a Part of Cultural History

Movie posters are history. They document cultural and political history. They tell stories about the countries they were made in. When you start your collection, you will become a bit of a historian yourself and will be making a statement about who you are and what your place is in that history.

How Movie Posters Get their Value

Movie posters are a great investment! The value of a movie poster is determined by its rarity and popularity of the film, and condition of the poster. Fewer creases, pinholes, and tears in it increase the value. Originals and one-sheets tend to have more value. Reprints have less value. Another important factor is the number of posters printed. Contact an expert in film memorabilia and arrange for an evaluation.

Tips and Advice from Collectors on Movie Posters

Once you have a sizable collection, you may want to inventory it and insure it. Get some advice on what to collect. Even if the poster is not of great value, it will have sentimental value. At some point, you may want to hand it down to your children, or family members. In this way, it will become an heirloom and part of your history. If you need advice, go online and check in forum pages and talk with collectors. Attend events held for collectors and join communities for collecting posters. The joy of collecting is not only an art but a shared art.

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