What would you like to know?

Click on the questions below to reveal a useful answer for each one of them. As additional questions are received, this page will be updated in due course to cover those too. Do you have a question not answered here? Ask away!

Alternatively, feel free to also put forward any questions over on our Twitter account: @LobbyCardTweets

10" x 8" and 14" x 11"

The vast majority of cinema cards featured here on the Lobby Cards Gallery measure 10" x 8" (Ten Inches x Eight Inches).

Selected larger format cards measure 14" x 11" (Fourteen Inches x Eleven Inches).

A vintage Apocalypse Now USA lobby card featuring soldiers and a chopper
A traditional lobby card measuring 14" x 11"
Max von Sydow (Ming) alongside Ornella Muti (Princess Aura)
A "mini" lobby card measuring 10" x 8"

The exception to these measurements are international lobby cards (France, Germany, Spain). These usually have different dimensions and also more frequently consist of a mixture of landscape and portrait formatted images.

Gone metric..?

  • 10" x 8" = 25.4 cm x 20.32 cm
  • 14" x 11" = 35.56 cm x 27.94 cm

Unfortunately not.

For a few reasons, physical lobby cards and movie press kits became surplus to requirements. This was mainly down to the demise of the National Screen Service (circa. 2000) and the parallel rise in the use of digital marketing materials (initially CD-ROM based press kits, followed by online downloadable resources).

A final nail in the lobby cards "coffin" will also have been the emergence of electronic, digital display boards on-site a cinema complexes. Thanks to the rapid rise of the Internet, cinemagoers these days typically have already seen several teaser and preview images, long before the release of the film in cinema theatres. Another reason why on-site "preview" images are sadly no longer required.

When lobby cards stopped being produced.

In the USA, most lobby cards ceased being printed as long ago as 1989. Their existence continued into the 1990's here in the UK and survived well into the new millennium in selected countries such as France, German and Japan.

As of 2021, newly printed lobby cards of any kind are an extremely rare occurrence, reserved only for special one-off screenings - and occasionally also included as bonus items in "Collector Editions" of film releases. These are not true lobby cards however, rather authorised "film cards".

That depends (on a number of factors).

The actual "value" of a particular set of lobby cards or an individual card can vary quite dramatically, based on a few variable factors and considerations. Here are a few key ones to bear in mind when trying to research and put a value on Lobby or Front of House cards:

  • Provenance: Are the cards authentic, vintage memorabilia?
    • Unauthorised reproduction cards are practically worthless, compared to the vintage originals from which they were reprinted!
    • Official cards from later re-releases of films in cinemas DO have a value, but this is typically less than coveted "First Release" cards. Likewise, cards produced for later video rental releases also command a lower asking price.
  • Present and correct: If you have a batch of cards, do they represent a complete set?
    • Remember that not all "sets" comprised of 8 cards - some had more, some less..
  • Subject matter: What film does the card depict scenes from?
    • For example (and as one might expect..) "Dirty Harry" cards are worth several times more than ones for "Police Academy"!
    • Be careful though! Some films which performed poorly at the Box Office may well have since acquired so-called "Cult Status" over the years. As such marketing materials relating to such titles may well be in shorter supply and greater demand - which can result in higher valuations (and asking prices)
  • Star power: What movie star(s) are featured on the card(s)? Likewise, who wrote or directed the movie?
  • Condition: Are the cards damaged in any way? If so, how bad are the blemishes?
  • What country do the cards originate from?
    • As a general rule, cards from the USA and UK typically command a higher asking price vs. cards from France, Germany, Spain, Japan or Mexico...

Valuation services.

Please note: At the present time I do not offer a formal valuation service (sorry!). However, if you have any general questions about the value of any lobby cards you either own or are considering buying (elsewhere) please do feel free to get in touch for some honest, informed guidance.

Ebay.

Obvious as it may sound, the mighty Ebay is an eternal treasure trove when it comes to finding rare pieces of movie memorabilia! Fortunately, lobby and front of house cards are no exception - and you'll even find dedicated categories for UK, USA and "International" lobby cards on their extensive databases.

Take a look!

Good question.

With the rise of reproduction and "reprint" lobby cards (some of which may actually be authorised "official" marketing materials), it can be a minefield when trying to differentiate "real" from "fake" lobby cards.

This is a complex, important topic which will be covered in more detail in the future (on a dedicated area of this Website). In the meantime, if you are new to collecting here are some useful tips:

  • When buying online (e.g. Ebay) always (ALWAYS!) get in touch with the Seller and ask them if the card or cards you are interested in are "vintage originals"
  • Always read a Seller's description carefully (and to the end) - as some unscrupulous people sometimes tag on "Reproductions." (or similar wording - right at the bottom of a listing!)
  • Other keywords to look out for on listings would be "repro", "reprint", "non-vintage" and similar
  • Collectors of Star Wars and James Bond memorabilia are advised to be particularly cautious, as these popular series of films are awash with shoddy, fake copies of vintage marketing materials. Buyer beware!
  • Sellers offering multiple sets of the same cards (all in "Mint" condition) should also be treated with some levels of apprehension and general caution - particularly if there are seen to magically then "restock" listed sets, over time..

Front of House = UK. Lobby = USA.

Although lobby cards were also printed in other countries, the vast majority you will see featured here on the Galleries will originate from either the USA, or the UK.

In the case of the latter, the correct terminology for such printed materials is actually "Front of House" cards - as this is what they were referred to as here in the United Kingdom (and still are by many collectors to this day).

"Lobby cards" on the other hand typically refers to cards printed over in the United States of America (be it 10" x 8" or 14" x 11" sized images).

The most likely simple explanation for the difference in naming conventions is simply down to the fact that the entrance area of cinema buildings in the UK would be referred to as being the "front of house", whereas over in America the same area would be known more commonly as the "lobby"...

Any differences between them?

Despite the difference in name, "lobby" and "front of house" cards are actually very similar - the only typical difference being the UK "FOH" cards were printed on thinner paper/card stock (compared to their USA counterparts). The choice of actual scenes depicted usually also differs when comparing UK and USA cards. As a result, die-hard collectors and fans of particular film releases often like to acquire both USA and UK sets (wherever possible, that is - in some cases cards were not printed in both countries, depending on the size of the cinema release, marketing budgets and so on).

Yes, yes there is!

If you would like to see cute little thumbnails linking to ALL Galleries currently on this Website, check out this page