Cinemasterpieces in Scottsdale sells old movie posters for a lot of money


Sometimes the promotional poster is the only good thing about a movie, David Lieberman of Masterpieces said the other day.

“Especially those sci-fi movies from the 1950s. The invasion of the saucer men – you can’t sit through it. 50 foot woman attack – a horrible, horrible movie. But the posters are iconic, colorful and beautiful. And they sell for a load of money. Several thousand dollars.

Lieberman sells old movie posters. His Scottsdale-based company offers more than 10,000 lobby cards, single sheets (those big movie ads hanging in movie theaters), and classic Hollywood press kits. He collects old posters himself, so Lieberman knew there was a need for a good internet store selling movie posters.

“In 2002, I was working in real estate with my father and I wasn’t having a good time,” he recalls. When he launched a website offering movie posters for sale, it took off.

“I said, ‘Daddy, I don’t want to sell any property anymore. I want to have fun.'”

At first, Lieberman placed ads offering to buy entire collections. “Sometimes it was a lot of crap,” he admitted. “But sometimes you end up making a deal.”

Movie studios have long abandoned most of the promotional products offered by Lieberman. “They all stopped producing inserts and half sheets in the mid-1980s,” he said. “The theater directors no longer ordered them. What about lobbying cards? Forget. Tarantino made a set for The Hateful Eight in 2015, but he’s a movie buff and it was just him having fun.

James Bond and the original Star wars the trilogy always surpasses everything. Also Jaws and Blade runner and Scarface, Lieberman said. His typical client is a man and decorates a man cave or a home theater. “The guys who buy these posters are now in their 40s and 50s, and they’re buying a piece of their childhood. ”

Disney has always been popular at CineMasterpieces. And lately, chick movies like Notebook and A pretty woman have sold. “Over the past 10 years, I have sold to more women. I do not know why. Maybe they buy the posters for their husband or boyfriend.

The other day he bought a Rocky a sheet signed by his stars, Sylvester Stallone and Talia Shire. Because autographs are often forged, he usually doesn’t bother with signed pieces. But Lieberman knows the dealer he bought the Rocky poster of. “He actually bought me this poster, got it signed by Stallone, and sold it to me.”

His favorite movie is 1977 Slap shot, a comedy about a hockey team. “I was 11 when it came out, and there’s nothing funnier for an 11-year-old than a movie where he says the word ‘fuck’ about 300 times. It’s Paul Newman’s favorite movie he’s ever made.

Settling on a favorite movie poster is more difficult for Liberman. “I should go with Star wars. The single leaf style is classic. Everyone knows this image of Tom Jung, with Luke Skywalker holding the lightsaber over his head. I’ve sold hundreds of them over the years and still have a few in stock. The price has gone from $ 300 when I started selling to now, where they go to $ 3,500 and up.

Not long ago he sold a Casablanca a leaf to actor Mark Wahlberg. “I met him because I delivered the poster to his mansion in Beverly Hills,” recalled Lieberman, who took the order from a Wahlberg employee. “I had him put Mark on the phone, and I said, ‘Do you realize how much this is going to cost?'”

Casablanca posters are expensive. In fact, Lieberman said the rarest item he ever sold was a Casablanca half sheet that was worth $ 100,000 about 10 years ago.

One of his strangest purchases was a large stash of posters found inside the walls and floors of a house in Canada. “This guy was doing some demolition work, tearing down walls, and he found all these old movie inserts.” Lieberman believes the previous owner must have been working in a movie theater in the mid-1930s, based on the age of the posters. “They were used as insulators,” he said. “The guy who found them thought, It’s junk, and he put them in the trash. Then he thought, Wait, this stuff could be valuable. He was right. One of them, for a film entitled Special agent, could be the only one of its kind. Let’s just say the guy who found them is a lot richer today.

People love to own a piece of the past, Lieberman said. “Why else are people spending ridiculous amounts of money on rookie Mickey Mantle cards or Spider-Man comics?” He asked. “They capture a little piece from 1962 or 1952. I don’t know. I’ve collected all my life and still don’t really get it.

A while back, Lieberman rented a pile of old sci-fi movies. “I thought, I’ve never seen some of those trash movies, and I still sell the posters of them. I felt it was my responsibility to try them out.

He did.

“And of course,” Lieberman said, “They were just terrible.”

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