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King Kong (RKO, 1933). Three Sheet (40.25" X 79") Style B.
"Ladies and Gentlemen, before I tell you any more, I'm going to show you the greatest thing your eyes have ever beheld. He was a king and a god in the world he knew, but now he comes to civilization...Ladies and Gentlemen, look at Kong, the Eighth Wonder of the World." It was the declaration made to the citizens of New York by King Kong's captor Carl Denham (Robert Armstrong) in the movie and at the world premiere of the film in March 1933 at RKO's Radio City Music Hall. How prophetic a statement it was as it applied to the film and this poster as well as it is surely one of the greatest ever beheld. RKO knew they had a major hit on their hands when Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack turned in this legendary fantasy full of dinosaurs and adventure. Cooper and Schoedsack, who were good friends, turned their mutual interest in film-making into reality by creating documentaries set in far off destinations full of adventure. They eventually made their way to Hollywood where they would continue their careers at RKO. The two were obviously inspired by Harry O. Hoyt's 1925 epic The Lost World as the plot of that film would resemble that of King Kong. They also realized that in order for the dinosaurs in their film to appear life-like, they needed the special effects wizardry of stop-motion animator Willis O'Brien, the same man who created the effects in The Lost World. Not only did O'Brien animate the dinosaurs in King Kong, but he also animated the great ape himself, sending him on his climb up the side of the Empire State Building and into cinematic history in the process. This incredible poster features Kong on the side of the Empire State Building, clutching Fay Wray in his taloned paw and snarling at the world below him. The other scene, at the bottom of the poster, is that of Kong battling with one of Willis O'Brien's dinosaurs on Skull Island. The poster is a visual triumph and one of the rarest three sheets in the hobby. Although there are several copies of the style A three sheet known to exist, there are far fewer of this style B which has rarely ever been offered for sale. In the early 1980s, there was a collection of King Kong posters discovered in Geneva, Switzerland that included two copies of the Roland Coudon French grande, at least one Rene Peron French grande, a US style B one sheet, at least one US style A three sheet, three US six sheets and at least one US style B three sheet. The US style B poster being offered here is very likely the same style B three sheet from this legendary find as the linenbacking is the same as all the other posters from this collection. The poster is mounted directly to the linen, a blue-gray material typical of European mounts at the time. The condition of this poster is just as impressive as it's graphics. It was originally printed in three separate sheets and great care was taken with the alignment of the sections when being linenbacked. There has been none of the usual "image correction" with paint done to make sure the alignment looks proper-- it simply wasn't necessary as the registration and alignment is near perfect. The linen was trimmed to the edge of the poster. However, the poster itself has not been trimmed at all. The dimensions are typical of three sheet posters once the sections have been overlapped while backing. There were four pinholes in the upper right corner, one in the upper left, one in the lower left and two in the lower right corners. The edges of the poster show the slightest bit of wear and on the middle of the right border there is a clean one inch tear that just touches the edge of the background art. There is a crimp/wrinkle in the linen in the bottom edge that also just goes into the green background. The poster also has an extremely minor bit of color touchup to two centerpoints in Kong's shoulder and right arm and another slight bit to a extra vertical crease next to a vertical fold on the left side of the poster. These are only apparent when one does an extremely close inspection. Other than these minor corrections, this poster is in absolutely spectacular condition and appears better than it's already high grade. Truly, this is an opportunity of a lifetime to acquire this gem; this historically important and spectacular stone litho poster for one of the greatest films ever made. Very Fine+ on Linen.

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Service and Handling Description: Movie Poster - Rolled (view shipping information)

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Auction Dates
November, 2012
29th-30th Thursday-Friday
Internet/Mail/Phone Bidders: 11
Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
Page Views: 15,638

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