Phantom of the Opera Poster May Bring $150,000+ at Heritage Auctions


DALLAS—The haunting one sheet for Carl Laemmle’s 1925 epic The Phantom of The Opera, a landmark film featuring Lon Chaney’s “living skull” makeup (est. $80,000+) highlight’s Heritage Auctions’ Vintage Movie Poster Signature® Auction July 19-20 in Dallas. The rare poster, one of four known to exist, highlights the auction’s epic selection of one sheets, inserts, lobby cards and more, many of which were previously unknown to collectors and movie memorabilia experts.

“This auction holds a number of never-before-seen rarities from history’s finest films,” said Grey Smith, Director of Movie Posters at Heritage. “Numerous one sheet and large format examples haven’t seen the light of day for decades and horror collectors will be very pleased to see the discoveries.”

Universal’s The Wolf Man, another monster from the golden age of horror flicks, graces a rare insert from 1941. The stunningly-preserved insert shows the films’ main characters and Lon Chaney Jr. in full wolf makeup (est. $30,000+). Collector’s seeking a collection-defining piece can look no further than a half sheet for the 1932 RKO classic The Most Dangerous Game (est. $20,000+)—one of the rarest and most coveted half sheets from the 1930s horror genre.

A rare style B half sheet from Paramount’s 1953 shocker The War of the Worlds depicts the remarkable special effects made famous during the film’s harrowing Martian invasion (est. $15,000+). Another scarce, sci-fi rarity based on a novel by H.G. Wells is a rare insert for the 1936 film Things to Come by United Artists (est. $8,000+).

The auction’s rare discoveries include the iconic 1942 insert for Casablanca, Warner Brothers’ masterpiece wartime tale (est. $20,000+), as well as a remarkable 1948 Italian 2 foglio for The Lady from Shanghai (est. $20,000+).

One of the auction’s most unusual discoveries is a previously unknown German magazine advertisement for the 1921 vampire classic Nosferatu, (est. $6,000+) measuring 11-3/4” by 17-1/4”. The film had limited distribution due to a legal tussle of copyrights with Dracula author Bram Stoker’s widow. Original posters and advertising material of any kind associated with the film is virtually impossible to find, making this promotional from a German film magazine an incredible opportunity for collectors.

Several posters will be offered for the first time ever, such as a rare style B French double grande for RKO’s 1933 King Kong. The highly elusive poster, with Kong reigning supreme over the New York City skyline, retains its impressive stone litho color saturation. Another first for collectors: a one-of-a-kind billboard created in Britain for the 1937 release of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs - spanning an incredible 20-feet wide by 9-feet high—will make its auction debut during the two-day event (est. $10,000+). The stunning 24-sheet poster was printed in England to promote the film and was recently restored after spending 15 years in a private collection.

Additional highlights include, but are not limited to:

Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of more than $900 million, and 850,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit

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