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Did You Know... that U.S. theaters stopped using three-sheets and six-sheets before foreign theaters did?

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Added: 03/21/2016

We received this question recently:

"I purchased a Star Wars 3-sheet at an auction 2 weeks ago. It arrived yesterday and I was surprised to see the poster was stamped  with a Foreign release marking. I didn't see any markings on your listing that this was the international version. I can't help but be disappointed in how this lot was described."

I replied as follows:

"This is Bruce, the owner. I need to explain something to you. From the 1910s to the 1960s, U.S. theaters would very commonly display three-sheets and six-sheets on their walls (and more often on the OUTSIDE of their building).

 Starting in the late 1960s, the studios started making a second version for non-U.S. theaters, for two reasons. For one, the U.S. posters had our ratings on them, while the non-U.S. countries did not use that rating system, so they wanted posters without ratings on them. But the other was that the non-U.S. theaters could display posters with far racier images than U.S. theaters, so they would sometimes have much sexier images on the non-U.S. posters.

So starting in the late 1960s, three-sheets and six-sheets would be stamped either "Domestic" or "Foreign", so that they knew whether to send them within the U.S. or outside. We always identify which version those are.

4a620 RETURN OF THE JEDI 6sh '83 never before seen, great cast montage art by Kazuhiko Sano!But starting around 1974, hardly any U.S. theaters displayed three-sheets or six-sheets anymore. This was likely because the movies were heavily advertised on TV, and the theaters no longer wanted to bother with large posters. So the ONLY three-sheets and six-sheets that were made from that time on were ones that were used in other countries, where they apparently still liked them.

So from 1974 on, ALL three-sheets or six-sheets are stamped "Foreign" and there are NO ones that are stamped "Domestic" (one might wonder why they continued stamping them "Foreign", when there were no other ones, and it was likely just force of habit!). But we don't put a paragraph on those 1974 on ones, because there is only one style that you can buy.

What this all means is that the ONLY three-sheet made for Star Wars says "Foreign" on the back.

But in spite of this not being "the wrong version" as you suspected, you are still welcome to return it. because no one is ever "stuck" in our auctions. If you want to return it for a full refund, then let me know and I will provide return instructions. But as I say, the reason it is a "Foreign" poster is because that is what every example of this poster is (and the same is true for the Star Wars six-sheet).

Incidentally, in case you are wondering, the very LAST three-sheets and six-sheets that were made appear to be those for "Return of the Jedi" in 1983, which are quite rare, and are are pictured above from when we auctioned them (there are other movies from 1983 that had three-sheets and six-sheets, but those movies were released before "Return of the Jedi"). And of course there may have been ones released later that we have never seen, but that would surprise us!


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