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Movie Poster Art Premieres
Written by A.M.P.A.S. PR Release   
now_playing.jpgShowcasing more than 150 rarely seen original movie poster paintings, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences €™ new book, Now Playing: Hand-Painted Poster Art from the 1910s through the 1950s, offers a glimpse into a world of cinema art that until recently was mostly forgotten.   Now Playing is available for purchase wherever books are sold.

Published in cooperation with Angel City Press, Now Playing highlights one-of-a-kind poster art commissioned by theater owners in communities across the U.S. to advertise their movie attractions.   The full-color and black-and-white posters featured in the book include Edward Augustus Armstrong's rendition of "King Kong" (1933), Batiste Madalena's interpretation of Douglas Fairbanks' "The Black Pirate" (1926), R.J. (Renfred) Rogers' representation of Laurel and Hardy's "The Devil's Brother" (1933) and O.M. (Otto) Wise's composition for Harold Lloyd's "Girl Shy" (1924).

 "This book documents the unrecorded and uncelebrated work of movie poster artists whose unique illustrations graced the lobbies and façades of both movie palaces and neighborhood theaters," said Anthony Slide, Hollywood film historian and author of Now Playing.

Working both for individual movie houses and for major chains, the artists created posters for specific audiences, "selling" a film through advertising that emphasized elements that would appeal to the local market.   Because the posters were thought of as disposable signs, they were often destroyed, painted over, or adapted for new films.   As a result, few original examples have survived, although a number of the rare original works featured in the book are now part of the permanent collection of the Academy's Margaret Herrick Library at the Fairbanks Center for Motion Picture Study in Beverly Hills.

Now Playing is based on original research by Jane Burman Powell and Lori Goldman Berthelsen.   Slide joined the project to write the untold story.

Now Playing: Hand-Painted Poster Art from the 1910s through the 1950s retails for $50.   To preview several of the posters featured in Now Playing, visit




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