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    Follow the Stories | Chattanooga, Tennessee (2009)

    Classic Movie Stills

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    • Elvis Presley from the film Blue Hawaii


      This image of Elvis Presley from the film Blue Hawaii is part of a large collection of movie memorabilia a guest named Holli brought in to the Chattanooga ROADSHOW in July 2008. What follows are highlights from the hundreds of images Holli inherited from her grandfather, a movie lover and theater manager.

      (Photo © Hal B. Wallis and Joseph H. Hazen)

    • Clayton Moore astride his horse, Silver


      These images illustrate one of the prime promotional tools for the early movie studios, many of which owned their own theater chains until the landmark Paramount Decision in 1948 declared such an arrangement a monopoly. Here, a lobby still for the 1956 film The Lone Ranger shows actor Clayton Moore astride his horse, Silver. The image would have been displayed in a movie theater lobby to generate excitement about the upcoming film. You can still find lobby stills in some theaters today.

      (Photo © Warner Bros. Picture Distributing Corporation)
    • Marilyn Monroe cooling herself above a subway grate


      Appraiser Gary Sohmers told Holli that her grandfather's collection "represents 60 years of movie history." Few images are more iconic than this one of Marilyn Monroe cooling herself above a subway grate in the 1955 classic The Seven Year Itch.

      (Photo © 20th Century-Fox Film Corp.)
    • billing block along the bottom that lists selected film credits


      Each lobby still includes a billing block along the bottom that lists selected film credits. In this case, the credits include the film's use of CinemaScope, an early widescreen format.

      (Photo © 20th Century-Fox Film Corp.)
    • a first printing would add hundreds of dollars to the value


      This still advertises the 1933 version of King Kong, but unfortunately for Holli the image was printed much later. According to Sohmers, a first printing would add hundreds of dollars to the value. Most of the items in Holli's collection are originals.

      (Photo © RKO Radio Pictures)
    • In this image, 'R56' signifies a reissue from 1956


      Sohmers told Holli that you can spot a reissued print because of the letter "R" in the NSS (National Screen Service) ID number along the bottom. In this image, "R56" signifies a reissue from 1956, and "263" indicates that King Kong was the 263rd movie released that year.

      (Photo © RKO Radio Pictures)
    • Image from a Gone with the Wind reissue


      The National Screen Service Corporation issued sets of these lobby stills and other promotional materials to movie theaters across the country. Among Holli's highest-valued items is a complete set for the film East of Eden that would fetch $1,000. Also included in her collection are these images from a Gone with the Wind reissue.

      (Photo © Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.)
    • Image from a Gone with the Wind reissue


      Released in 1939, the Civil-War epic received thirteen Academy Award nominations, more than any previous film. Among the nominees for Best Supporting Actress was Olivia de Havilland, pictured here with costar Leslie Howard.

      (Photo © Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.)
    • Marilyn Monroe in the film noir 'Niagara.'


      Holli's grandfather had "great taste in movies," Sohmers remarked. "He kept only the best." Indeed, the collection includes many of Hollywood's biggest stars. Pictured here is Marilyn Monroe in the film noir "Niagara."

      (Photo © 20th Century-Fox Film Corp.)
    • Clark Gable as Rhett Butler


      Clark Gable received an Academy Award nomination for his portrayal of the dashing Rhett Butler in Gone with the Wind. In this scene, he enjoys a game of jailhouse cards with his Yankee captors.

      (Photo © Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.)
    • Sophia Loren in the spy film 'Judith'


      Screen siren Sophia Loren starred as a Jewish woman hunting for an ex-Nazi general in the spy film Judith, which was filmed on location in Israel.

      (Photo © Cumulus Productions, Ltd. and Paramount Pictures Corporation)
    • Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast at Tiffany's


      In one of her most memorable roles, Audrey Hepburn played the quirky and stylish Holly Golightly in the film based on the Truman Capote novella Breakfast at Tiffany's.

      (Photo © Paramount Pictures Corporation and Jurow-Shepherd Productions)
    • ROADSHOW appraiser Gary Sohmers put its full value between $10,000 and $15,000


      After examining the large collection, ROADSHOW appraiser Gary Sohmers put its full value between $10,000 and $15,000, with most of the individual images worth $10 to $50. Holli plans to frame and hang many of her favorite pieces from her grandfather's beloved collection. Want to learn more? Watch the full appraisal of this item in our ROADSHOW Archive.

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