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    Description

    The Maltese Falcon (Warner Brothers, 1931). Window Card (14" X 22").
    In 1930, what would become one of Dashiell Hammett's best known works was serialized in the pages of Black Mask, a popular detective fiction pulp of the day. An immediate hit, it didn't take long for Warner Brothers to see the potential in Hammett's story, especially as they were beginning to have success with their line of popular crime films such as Little Caesar (1931) and The Public Enemy (1931). Faithfully adapted from Hammett's novel, the film starred Ricardo Cortez as private eye Sam Spade, one of detective literature's greatest creations. When the studio tried to re-release the film in 1936, they were unable to obtain the approval of the Production Code, owing to such "lewd" content as Bebe Daniels' nude bathtub scene, overt suggestions of Spade's sexual involvement with female clients, and the inclusion of strong homosexual themes, like the suggestion that Wilmer the gunsel and Caspar Gutman are involved in a homosexual relationship. Although all of these elements were fine in the less restrictive pre-Code Hollywood era, when the Code grew teeth a few years later, such references and innuendos were enough to have a picture shelved. There the film remained until television brought it from the vaults fifty years later. Of course everyone remembers the John Huston directed film noir version starring Humphrey Bogart made ten years later but as movie poster collectors know, the rarity of posters from this 1931 version is legendary. This wonderful window card is the first copy we have seen from this film. It had a small corner chip off of the lower left and some grease pencil writing in the upper white imprint area. The poster has been washed and pressed. Fine+.




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    Auction Dates
    March, 2015
    28th-29th Saturday-Sunday
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