Millions of unseen Hollywood photographs set for Guernsey’s sale



2015-06-26 10:40:40

A treasure trove of never-before-seen Hollywood photographs is heading to auction next year, after the closure of the New York institution Movie Star News.

Opened in 1939 by Irving Klaw and his sister Paula, the second-hand book store soon became a mecca for film fans when it began selling photographs of Hollywood idols. The Manhattan store soon had a thriving mail-order business, and Klaw became known as the ‘King of the Pin-Ups’.

He began advertising for models to appear in ‘cheesecake’ photographs and launched the career of Bettie Page, who went on to become a pin-up icon of the 1950s. He later faced pornography charges, and was forced to burn the majority of his negatives.

Movie Star News closed its doors this year, with an inventory of more than three million photographs along with 250,000 unseen negatives and around 10,000 films. The entire collection was purchased by the company Entertainment Collectibles, and will head to auction next year via the New York-based auction house Guernsey’s.

Amongst the archives are previously unseen photographs and negatives of stars including Marilyn Monroe, Charlie Chaplin, James Dean, John Wayne and Betty Grable.

Amongst the highlights of the collection are numerous pieces of Betty Page memorabilia, which are certain to attract attention from her army of fans and collectors around the world. Items such as shoes, costumes and props such as whips and chains will be sold alongside original photographs and even the cameras that took them.

With items ranging in estimate from a few dollars to over $100,000, the auction is set to feature something for every collector.

With the first part of the collection set to be sold in early 2013, experts have valued the collection in the millions and expect film fans from across the globe to enter into the bidding.

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