Observing from beyond the solar system, a cultural outsider looks in.

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Too Many Movie Posters, Not Enough Wall Space

Once I have some time to actually do something about framing, The Senator's memorabilia sale will have done wonders for my home decor. I just don't know if I have enough wall space.

In the past week, I've just about moved into The Senator. I've been there every day for the past week, usually from before it opens until after closing. Well, I've always kind of wanted to work in a movie theatre. I'm having fun with this. I've sold memorabilia, tickets, popcorn, and I'm helping to go through the massive quantities of posters and other items that still have not been sorted and priced.

In the process, I'm adding some very cool stuff to my collection. Yesterday's finds include a Star Wars Episode II poster, a Fifth Element poster, a roll of trailer film for War, Inc., which I reviewed a while ago on this blog (and since John Cusack posted my review on his blog, that movie is kind of special to me now) and...drumroll please...we busted out a box of foil-embossed tickets from The Senator's gala 50th anniversary celebration in 1989, when they showed the 50th anniversary version of The Wizard of Oz and the theatre was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. One of these awesome keepsakes of Senator history can be yours for a mere $10, and it comes in a foil-embossed Senator envelope.

There are more Star Wars Episode II posters and Fifth Element posters, and more trailers for other films, too. We also busted out a roll of Lord of the Rings posters with individual characters on them: Frodo, Gandalf, Gollum, Arwen. A lot of new posters were put out yesterday --- too many to list, so come by to check it out. I know there are some very beautiful Wizard of Oz 50th anniversary posters too, and also some E.T. 20th anniversary posters. I'm into the geeky fantasy and sci-fi movies, so they tend to be the ones I notice, but there's a lot of movie posters of all kinds, and we're getting into some of the older stuff now. (The older stuff was put away first and is harder to get to, so it's taken a while to get to that.)

I also want to give a shout out to Thomas at the Star Toys Museum. He called the other day about the giant Millenium Falcon Extraordinaire that's on silent auction at The Senator. He gave me some more information about the item, which he said was one of the rare of the rare Star Wars items. It was originally displayed in a toy store (this one was in a toy store in New Jersey). There were only maybe 800 or so of them made. Each one has a serial number on a plate. The serial number of the one at The Senator is #246. These sell for up to $1500 or so --- at the current bid price of $300, this one may end up being a bargain, but there's still about a week to go on the auction. There are some other parts to it that Tom Kiefaber says he has, but they're not being displayed on it right now. Hopefully by this weekend it'll be hung from the ceiling and displayed better with the removable parts put back on it.

Well, I wish I had room for this myself, but at about 6 feet long, that would be a challenge. Thomas pointed out that we all have a lot more room over our heads than we realize, and this item can be easily hung from a ceiling.

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Blogger Mike B said...

Why aren't they putting this stuff up on eBay and why wasn't this stuff sold BEFORE the Senator got foreclosed on? If they didn't have to have a fire sale they could have gotten a better price.

I donated to help keep the Senator afloat the last time and I am a bit ticked off to see that it has been sitting on an asset base that could have kept it afloat into the summer blockbuster season.

Now I am going to have to go to that damn theatre in Towson where there's no parking.

April 10, 2009

Blogger Laura Serena said...

Please remind me, Mike the expert, what historic theatre is it that you run? None? That's interesting.

Are you aware that when The Senator was still running first run movies, their fixed overhead for the place was about $100K a month? Are you aware the movie companies were taking 80% of the box office receipts? Do you really think a few poster sales would have made the difference?

For that matter, how many movie theatres do you see selling their movie posters and still in the first run film business? None? Might there be a reason for that? Maybe the film companies don't particularly like them to do that?

By the way, what army of volunteers do you think The Senator has to put thousands of individual items on e-bay? Are you volunteering? In my experience, e-bay takes about a half hour of time per listing, although I guess there are programs out there to automate some of it. Some of this stuff will eventually go on e-bay, I would imagine, but it's simply not practical to put all of it there.

The Towson Commons theatre validates parking at the parking structure next door, FYI.

April 10, 2009


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