On the 10th January, 1840 following the Great Post Office Reform spearheaded by Rowland Hill in the UK, the Uniform Penny Post started charging only 1p for prepaid letters. The implementation of the fixed rate, now a cornerstone of the modern service made it practical by avoiding multi-fee confusion and the money handling of the older systems. The famous Penny Black became the world’s first postage stamp on May 6th. Of course it soon became apparent that the black cancellation mark didn’t show up that well thus leading to its successor, the Penny Red. From then on there wasn’t too much variety, the stamps’ design really only altering to reflect changes in the monarchy. It wasn’t until the 1950’s that commemorative stamps first began to appear. Nowadays, philatelists are inundated with the sheer variety of regular stamps and these exclusive editions. And this spring, the Royal Mail commemorates this special April with the release of Kate and William stamps.
One of the most popular themes to commemorate is that of the silver screen. Movies, in particular, capture two collector’s markets; the film buffs and the philatelists. It’s not just in the UK that this happens either, many countries big and small print their own stamps and many take inspiration from the flicks.
So here is a selection of some of my favourite classic movie stamps – some are modern films that I feel will become classics in the future and some are from the more famous older classics.
One of the new slew of Marvel Comics adaptations that has spawned two sequels and one spin-off (so far). These stamps were released in the St Vincent and Grenadines in the Caribbean.
Classic British comedy usually falls into two categories: Ealing and Carry Ons.
Carry On Sergeant
Carry On Screaming
And how about classic movie stars? My particular hero was Bogie!
Children’s films are also a rich source of related merchandising.
MGM’s Wizard of Oz
This collection includes portraits from 101 Dalmatians, Mickey Mouse, Sleeping Beauty and The Jungle Book.
Mickey Mouse – Steamboat Willie and Fantasia
As released in the People’s Republic of China.
These stamps depict the ‘children’s edition’ book covers for a film series that is undoubtedly going to be a future classic.
Other genres are also commemorated such as these Universal Film Studio classic monster movies.
Classic Movie Monsters
I like how these stamps have the ‘place names’ printed on them.
A matter of personal taste I suppose but apart from Hellraiser I can take or leave Nightmare on Elm Street, Childsplay and The Chainsaw Massacre.
The action genre is not to be outdone with this set of 24 stamps celebrating Ian Fleming’s James Bond series.
Heroes of the Westerns have also been immortalised.
Yes, one of the classic modern films of our time, one that has spawned 5 sequels/prequels, several cartoon series and animated series and a whole host of merchandising:
If you would like to find out more about the history of stamps then read on.