Comedy was definitely king in Heritage Auctions
' Nov. 18-19 Vintage Movie Posters Signature(r) Auction, as a one sheet movie poster for The Three Stooges in Three Little Beers (Columbia, 1935) brought $59,750 to lead the auction, which realized $1.6 million total.
"The Stooges are as popular as ever," said Grey Smith, Director of Movie Posters at Heritage. "This is a very good result on a simply superb poster. I have to think that Moe, Larry and Curly would all be thrilled to see how beloved they are almost 80 years after they made this movie."
More than 1,300 bidders competed for the 1,472 lots in the auction, translating into a 91.8% sell-through rate by total value.
"We saw solid bidding across the board," said Smith. "All genres performed well and many posters went for several times their pre-auction estimates, which is always a pleasant surprise."
Chief among those pleasant surprises was a one sheet for Anna Christie (MGM, 1930), Greta Garbo's most famous role, and her inaugural sound film, which brought $38,838 against a pre-auction estimate of $5,000+.
A half sheet for RKO's 1932 The Most Dangerous Game, one of the most rare and desirable half sheets from the 1930s horror genre, was the subject of spirited bidding before finally finishing the day with a solid $31,070 price realized, while a Style B one sheet for Paramount's 1935 The Devil is a Woman, featuring an irresistible Marlene Dietrich dramatically in the arms of one of her Latin lovers (Cesar Romero), brought $26,290.
Hitchcock fans turned out for a beautiful one sheet from The 39 Steps (Gaumont, 1935), an extremely rare poster that has only been offered one other time by Heritage in the 10 years of the Movie Poster category, easily exceeded its $10,000+ pre-auction estimate to finish at $17,925.
Further highlights include, but are not limited to:
This Gun for Hire (Paramount, 1942), one sheet: Realized: $17,328.
The Return of Sherlock Holmes (Paramount, 1929), one sheet, Style A: Realized: $16,730.
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (Paramount, 1931), window card: Realized: $16,133.
King Kong (RKO, 1933), French grande: Realized: $14,340.
Breakfast at Tiffany's (Paramount, 1961), one sheet: Realized: $13,145.