Most Popular Formats/Sizes

UK Lobby Card/Front of House Card/Still

Historically displayed in sets of eight outside UK cinemas to show various scenes from the film being advertised, or supplied to newspapers for advertising purposes. The image is horizontal/landscape style.

Dimensions: 8” x 10”

Dimensions: 20cm x 25.5cm

US Lobby Card

Historically displayed in sets of eight inside US theatre foyers or lobbies and showing various different scenes from the film, often with attractive border artwork. The image is horizontal/landscape style.

Dimensions: 11” x 14”

Dimensions: 28cm x 35.5cm

US Half Sheet

A less common format, very rarely used for the last thirty years or more. The image is horizontal/landscape style.

Dimensions: 22” x 28”

Dimensions: 56 cm x 71 cm

US Insert

A rarer but very attractive format, which has more or less disappeared since the 1970s. The image is vertical/portrait style.

Dimensions: 14” x 36”

Dimensions: 35.5 cm x 91.5 cm

US One Sheet

Probably the most common and popular format, this is the standard display poster for US cinemas. The image is vertical/portrait style.

Dimensions: 27” x 41”

(40” from the 1980s)

Dimensions: 68.5 cm x 104 cm

(102 cm from the 1980s)

UK Quad

The standard display posters for UK cinemas, from the earliest days right up to date. The image is horizontal/landscape style.

Dimensions: 30” x 40”

Dimensions: 76 cm x 102 cm

Italian Two Foglio

The largest Italian poster to be printed as a single sheet. The image is vertical/portrait style.

Dimensions: 39” x 55”

Dimensions: 99 cm x 140 cm

French Grande

A stunning large French poster, also printed on a single sheet. The image is vertical/portrait style.

Dimensions: 47” x 63”

Dimensions: 119.5 cm x 160 cm

US Three Sheet

A larger US poster, usually printed on two sheets of paper. The image is vertical/portrait style.

Dimensions: 41” x 81”

Dimensions: 104 cm x 206 cm

Sizes By Country

US Posters

Hollywood has been the home of the movies since the original film pioneers moved West from New York more than a hundred years ago, initially to avoid patent litigation instigated by the inventors of cinematography, and then to exploit the weather and choice of local landscapes.

The majority of new films are US produced, and the majority of famous images and collectable posters are from original US materials. The main sizes are:

  • US Six Sheet. 81″ x 81″ produced in two, three or four separate pieces.
  • US Three Sheet. 41″ x 81″ and usually produced in two separate pieces.
  • US Subway. 45” x 60” printed on one sheet in horizontal format.
  • US 40″ x 60″. Usually on heavier card stock.
  • US 30″ x 40″. Usually on heavier card stock.
  • US One Sheet. Probably the best known and most common size. 27″ x 41″ (or 27″ x 40″ since the 1980s).
  • US Half Sheet. 22″ x 28″, on heavier paper or card stock, and often featuring different artwork from the One Sheet. Horizontal image, rather than vertical.
  • US Insert. 14″ x 36″, on heavier paper or card stock, and again often offering different artwork.
  • US Window Card. Usually 14″ x 22″, on card stock, and normally with a blank section at the top, on which the details of the local cinema at which the film was playing were added (but which were often trimmed off). They were designed to be displayed in places other than cinemas, such as local shops, or for use during road shows.
  • US Lobby Card. 11″ x 14″, on card stock, and usually issued in sets of eight.

UK Posters

For collectors based in the UK, film posters which were made and used here, and which we actually saw outside the cinema when we saw a film, can be particularly desirable, even for films which were produced in the US or elsewhere.

The artwork is usually, but by no means always, similar to the US image. The main sizes are:

  • UK Three Sheet. 40″ x 81″ and usually produced in two separate pieces.
  • UK Quad (sometimes called Quad Crown and sometimes Crown Quad). 30″ x 40″. The most common UK format, with the image viewed in landscape format, rather than the portrait format of the One Sheet.
  • UK One Sheet. 27″ x 40″ and therefore similar in appearance to the US One Sheet, but with artwork which is usually the same as the UK Quad. Typically printed in this country but for use abroad, in particular in Commonwealth countries.
  • UK Double Crown. 20″ x 30″.
  • UK Front of House or Lobby Card. Cards measuring 11″ x 14″ are sometimes found, but the more common size for the cards on display outside UK cinemas, usually issued in sets of eight, was 8″ x 10″.
  • UK Stills. 8″ x 10″.

US & UK Lobby Cards

Lobby Cards are much smaller than posters. They were produced in sets, in the US and UK, usually of eight.

As their name suggests, they were displayed outside the cinema or in its lobby or foyer, and are essentially a series of different scenes from the film, designed to give the waiting audience an idea of what they would see inside.

Until the 1960s, they very often also featured artwork in their margins which was the same as, or based on, the main poster art. Many studios also issued one Title Card with seven scene cards, with the Title Card featuring the main poster artwork.

Lobby Cards can often represent a more affordable alternative to posters, and are also popular with collectors with less free wall space, as US and UK lobby Cards typically measure only 11″ x 14″.

French Posters

The artwork on French posters for US or UK films is usually different from the country of origin’s poster, sometimes more “daring”, and often very collectable.

France has always had a very active film industry, so there are also many popular domestic titles. French posters come in a number of sizes, including:

  • French Affichette. A smaller size, usually around 15″ x 22″.
  • French Affiche. Usually either 24″ x 43″ or 22″ x 30″.
  • French Grande. 47″ x 63″ (in one piece).

Italian Posters

Like France, Italy produces a significant number of posters for its own national productions, as well as often stunningly different versions of posters for US productions.

The rich artwork, and the variety of sizes available, makes Italian posters very attractive to collectors. The main formats are:

  • Italian Four Foglio. 55″ x 79″ and produced in two pieces.
  • Italian Two Foglio. 39″ x 55″ (in one piece).
  • Italian One Sheet or Double Fotobusta. 28″ x 39″.
  • Italian Photobusta or Fotobusta. 14″ x 20″ until around the 1960s when they generally changed to 18″ x 26″. They originally came in sets of six, eight, ten, or twelve, illustrating different scenes from the film.
  • Italian Locandina. 13″ x 27″.

Argentinian Posters

Early Argentinian posters frequently feature beautiful artwork, not always based on the US versions, although from the 1970s onwards, the images have tended to be cruder and less attractive.

  • Argentinian One Sheet. 29″ x 43″. Usually on lesser quality/thinner paper.

Australian Posters

Australian posters for non-Australian movies usually comprise locally drawn versions of the same images as appear in a film’s country of origin. Sometimes the image is virtually indistinguishable from the “original”, but it is often clear that a less talented poster artist was at work. The paper is usually slightly lighter in weight than is used in the US or UK.

  • Australian One Sheet. 27″ x 40″.
  • Australian Daybill. 14″ x 40″, 13″ x 30″ or (more recently) 13″ x 26″.

Belgian Posters

Usually found in one of the smaller formats. They are typically dual language, French and Flemish, with the original English title appearing somewhere in the small print.

  • Belgian Affiche. 14″ x 19-22″, and other variants, and usually on lighter-weight paper.

German Posters

West German and post -unification posters often feature similar artwork to the country of origin, but can on occasion be very different. The most common sizes are:

  • German A1. 23″ x 33″.
  • German A0. 46″ x 33″.

Japanese Posters

Their artwork is usually built around photography from the film, and the most common size is the:

  • Japanese B2. 20″ x 29″.

Mexican Posters

Historically, produced on cheaper paper and harder to find in good condition. Newer posters are more robust, and both offer colourful variants on the country of origin poster, as well as illustrating the country’s own substantial level of local film production. The main sizes are:

  • Mexican One Sheet. Usually 26″ x 39″ until the mid 1970s, and 27″ x 41″ from then on.
  • Mexican Lobby Card. Like their US counterparts, produced in sets, usually of eight, and like the Mexican One Sheets, usually using more vivid colouring. Sizes vary but are usually around 14″ x 17″.

Polish Posters

Polish posters, especially those pre-1980, are generally acknowledged to feature some of the finest artwork and images. The artwork usually bears no resemblance to that used in the country of origin’s campaign, or even to the film itself

It is rather an artistic interpretation of the title by very talented local artists. The posters are usually produced on lesser quality paper, and come in a wide variety of sizes, including:

  • Polish One Sheet. 26-27″ x 39-41″.
  • Polish Smaller Poster. 16-20″ x 30-33″ or smaller.

Scandinavian Posters

They are also generally printed on lesser quality paper, but the artwork – especially by a number of early Swedish poster artists – is again often very striking, and collectable in its own right. Sizes also vary but include:

  • Danish One Sheet. 24″ x 33″.
  • Swedish One Sheet. 23″ x 33″ and 27″ x 40″.

Spanish Posters

There is a significant Spanish film industry, which is represented in the poster artwork. Posters for English language films (often released in Spain some time after their original local release) often employ very similar artwork to their originals, and offer more affordable versions of classic images. Usually printed (often in the US by the original printers) on lesser quality paper. The most common is the:

  • Spanish One Sheet. 27″ x 39″.

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