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Auction History Result

4j101 JAZZ SINGER linen Austrian 50x110 1929 art of Al Jolson in blackface, ultra rare premiere!

Date Sold 3/5/2019
Sold For: Login or Register to see sold price.


An Original 1929 (from the first release of this movie in Austria) Vintage Linenbacked Austrian Poster (measures 49 3/4" x 110 1/4" [126 x 280 cm]) (Learn More)

The Jazz Singer, the classic 1927 Alan Crosland musical biography ("Warner Bros. Supreme Triumph"; "Based upon the play by Samson Raphaelson as produced on the spoken stage by Lewis & Gordon and Sam H. Harris") starring Al Jolson (as Jakie Rabinowitz/Jack Robin), May McAvoy, Warner Oland (as Cantor Rabinowitz), Eugenie Besserer (as Sara Rabinowitz, Jolson's mother), Otto Lederer (as Moisha Yudelson), Robert Gordon (as the young Jakie Rabinowitz), Cantor Joseff Rosenblatt (a real life Cantor who was hired to perform the service in the movie), and Myrna Loy (in an early uncredited role!). Note that this movie is justifiably famous as the first "all talking" movie (even though it was only partially a talkie). Al Jolson was well known as "the world's greatest entertainer", and Samson Raphaelson loosely based his source stage play on Jolson's own life, and George Jessel played the lead on Broadway. When Warner Brothers went to make the first "talking picture" (the movie is widely referred to as the "first talking picture", although it was not "all talking"), they felt that "The Jazz Singer" with its music and strong dramatic content would make a perfect choice, but they went with Jolson in the lead role instead of Jessel.
NOTE: Click on linked names to see a biography.
If you know who did the art (if any), please let us know.
Important Added Info: Note that this poster is from when this classic movie first premiered in Austria in 1929 (the "erstauffuhrung" under the title means "premiere"). So if they printed posters solely for the premiere, then they would surely be even more rare than posters from subsequent Austrian showings, since this could only have been used when it premiered (of course, any Austrian posters from before World War II are quite rare). It has wonderful art of Al Jolson kneeling (with a silhouette behind him) that we have not seen on any other posters. The art is far superior to that of the U.S. one-sheet, which shows Jolson playing a piano and not in blackface.

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Overall Condition and Pre-Restoration Defects with Quality of Restoration: very good. The poster had an 8" crease at a slight diagonal in the chest of the silhouette next to the shoulder of the red figure. It had tiny paper loss at some crossfolds and very minor fold and border wear. It had some scuffs in the solid black areas. Overall, the poster has survived in about as good condition as one could possibly hope, especially considering its very large size and that it is 90 years old, and it seems a miracle that it survived at all!
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