Tag Archives: Bela Lugosi

Collecting Dracula: 1931 Movie Posters

The Film that Launched the Universal Monsters

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Film posters were designed to have short life spans.  They were simply intended to promote upcoming and new releases while a film was in the theater.  When the film left the theater, the posters were thrown away.  Since scarcity and desirability are primary drivers of value, film posters of classic movies are now extremely valuable – particularly for a film as iconic as Universal’s Dracula starring Bela Lugosi. 

The iconic nature of Todd Browning’s Dracula and the enduring legacy of Bela Lugosi’s performance make posters for this film some of the most coveted – and expensive – of all classic film posters.  Unfortunately, only a few posters are known to exist today from the wide range of designs that originally existed.

Below, we’ve included artwork from the original 1931 Universal press book to give you a look at the original designs that are not known to exist any longer.

One Sheet Film Posters

Dracula 1931 One Sheet Style A
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Style A
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Poster Style F
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Poster Style F

We previously published  in-depth article on the Style F One Sheet in our Classic Movie Posters series.  You can read it here:

Classic Movie Posters – Dracula 1931 One Sheet

The following One Sheet Styles are from the original 1931 Film Press Book but no known examples of these posters exist (if they do…Wow! What a find it will be!)

Dracula-1931-one-sheet-style-b
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Style B
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Style C
Dracula 1931 One Sheet Style C

Dracula 1931 Three Sheet:

Dracula 1931 Three Sheet Style D
Dracula 1931 Three Sheet Style D
Dracula 1931 Three Sheet Style E
Dracula 1931 Three Sheet Style E

Dracula 1931 Six Sheet:

Dracula 1931 Six Sheet
Dracula 1931 Six Sheet

Dracula 1931 24 Sheet

Dracula 1931 24 Sheet
Dracula 1931 24 Sheet

Dracula 1931 Insert

Dracula 1931 Insert
Dracula 1931 Insert

Dracula 1931 Half Sheets:

Dracula 1931 Half Sheet Style A
Dracula 1931 Half Sheet Style A
Dracula 1931 Half Sheet Style B
Dracula 1931 Half Sheet Style B

Dracula 1931 Window Cards:

Dracula 1931 Window Card Style A
Dracula 1931 Window Card Style A
Dracula 1931 Window Card Style B
Dracula 1931 Window Card Style B

Dracula 1931 Herald:

Dracula 1931 Herald Front
Dracula 1931 Herald Front
Dracula 1931 Herald Back
Dracula 1931 Herald Back
Dracula 1931 Herald Interior
Dracula 1931 Herald Interior

Dracula 1931 Jumbo Lobby Cards:

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Dracula 1931 Lobby Card

Many of these incredible pieces of ephemera are, unfortunately, lost to history.  And all of them are beyond he reach of most collectors.  Regardless, we have the film and, through this digital gallery, we can all relish the awesome pop culture art of these iconic posters.

Related:

Classic Movie Posters – Dracula 1931 One Sheet

Classic Movie Poster Gallery

Dracula-1931-One-Sheet

Dracula (Universal, 1931) One Sheet (27″ X 41″) Style F

It’s October and we’re getting back to basics with a focus on the most iconic of all classic monster movies, the films from Universal Studios.  First up, Bela Lugosi as Dracula in the 1931 film classic.

Watch this video history of 1931’s Dracula from Heritage Aucitions:

From Heritage Auctions website:

This lovely Style F stone litho one sheet, with its stunning image of Count Dracula aboard the Vespa en route to London, is a real gem. In March 2009, Heritage sold another copy of this style, from the collection of Nicolas Cage, which realized more than $310,000. At the time, it was noted that the copy offered was one of only three known. The discovery of the poster in this auction brings that grand total to four known to exist in the entire world. The poster had a tear in the upper white border that extends into the image within the green field between Dracula’s raised fist and the moon behind him, with a tiny fleck of missing paper at the intersection of the border and the green field. There was tear from the left border into the “D” in “Dracula” and down into the black of the cape. There was two tears in the right border that extend just into the image and there were pinholes in the upper two corners of the artwork. The bottom white border was trimmed just below the black line which delineates the image from the border so no color image was lost and the entire image and all borders were intact other than the lower border. Through careful professional restoration all of these issues discussed were beautifully restored. The colors on the poster are as vibrant as the day it was printed and have not been altered at all. Few posters combine the high degrees of rarity, desirability, and sheer artistic beauty like this scarce showpiece.

The poster described in the video,  only the fourth Style F poster from the film ever uncovered, sold at auction in 2012  for $143,400. This poster was part of The Berwick Discovery of Lost Movie Posters – a trove of 33 classic and incredibly rare posters dating back as far as 1930 – many examples of which were thought to be lost for all time, realized $503,035 total,.  The Berwick posters came out of an attic and were found in a small country auction in Berwick, PA, in several lots stuck together with wallpaper paste, which had preserved them for more than eight decades.

In 2009, a Style F one sheet owned by the actor Nicolas Cage went for $310,700 when the actor sold off his collection.

Related Articles: 

I recommend this Kindle book for more information on the classic monster movie posters:

POSTER ART FROM CLASSIC MONSTER FILMS

available at Amazon.com for Kindle