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Mondo Poster Fever: It’s No Mystery

I feel privileged to have participated in Mondo’s Mystery Movie weekend at the New Beverly Theater on Saturday night. For non Angelenos I should explain that the Beverly is the last full-time revival theater in L.A. It was acquired several years ago by its biggest fan and booster, Quentin Tarantino, who continues to screen inventively-paired double-features plus trailers in 35mm every night. When his assistant and co-programmer, Jules McLean, asked if I’d be willing to introduce Brad Bird’s The Iron Giant to a sold-out audience, I could hardly refuse.

What I didn’t understand, at first, was that this was part of Mondo’s Mystery Movies festival in Los Angeles. That’s the reason tickets sold out in advance, for $75 apiece: each of the 220 attendees was guaranteed a brand-new Mondo poster for the secret film being screened. (You can see the beautiful Iron Giant image and the others unveiled this weekend HERE.

The Austin, Texas-based Mondo—affiliated with the Alamo Drafthouse, whose owners are passionate about movies—has built a formidable reputation for creating bold and stylish movie posters, some for new movies but mostly for old (and not-so-old) favorites. These modern works of art are issued in very limited runs that sell out the instant they’re announced. However, there’s no charge for browsing their archive online, and I encourage you to do just that HERE.

Everyone seems to be catching Mondo fever. They were just written up in The New York Times and their work is being archived by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. It’s a long way from a t-shirt store to a world-class operation but that’s what they’ve become…and as a longtime poster collector and aficionado, I say “Bravo!”

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