2014-01-09 / Community

Bay to display movie poster collection

ESCANABA – Bay College will display one of the largest signed movie poster collections in the Midwest starting Jan. 21 at the Besse Center. The collection of authenticated posters is owned by Robert Gregg and has been permanently displayed at St. Francis Hospital in Escanaba since 2010. The collection is on loan to the Besse Center through a cooperative effort of St. Francis and Gregg.

The collection includes some very famous movies: all three Lord of the Rings films, Batman, Superman, Avatar, Titanic , The Passion of the Christ, Big Fish, Forrest Gump, Pay it Forward, and many more.

“All are signed by the lead actors,” said Gregg, “and many are autographed by the entire cast, including the director and composer.”

Gregg explained that he got into the signed poster-collecting hobby before it became expensive.

He said the biggest problem in collecting these days is counterfeits.

“People buy an original and then print superb reproductions. It is buyer beware.” According to Gregg, poster values are determined by a combination of factors, the most important being the title of the film. The most desirable posters are those from the most universally loved films such as Wizard of Oz, Casablanca, or It’s a Wonderful Life.

Finally the Condition is of great importance, according to Gregg. Vintage material from the early 1910’s through the 1950’s usually commands the highest prices. Some posters from the 1960’s also bring good prices, but the value of titles from the 1970’s up to the present drop dramatically due to the increase in the print runs.

The top horror and science fiction film titles have always generated the highest prices and continue to do so. Other genres and stars that receive high value include Film Noir, the Marx Brothers, Marilyn Monroe, James Dean, Douglas Fairbanks, early Walt Disney cartoons and other classic animation, and Alfred Hitchcock.

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