A rare “Star Wars” concept poster for “The Empire Strikes Back” has sold for $26,400, making it the most expensive movie poster from the franchise ever sold in an auction.
According to Heritage Auctions, the poster was expected to sell between $5,000 and $10,0000. A long-time pop culture collector, who asked to remain anonymous, reportedly purchased the poster on Sunday in Dallas.
“This poster is considered to be one of the more rare posters in the entire Star Wars trilogy,” said Grey Smith, director of vintage posters at Heritage Auctions, in a statement. “This poster is unique as it features the complete Kastel artwork in the original color palette for the second in George Lucas’ trilogy.”
According to Heritage, the poster was a trial run by artist Roger Kastel, who took inspiration for the print from a “Gone with the Wind” poster in which Clark Gable carries Vivien Leigh surrounded by flames. In his poster, Han Solo and Princess Leia Organa share a similar embrace, with characters from the franchise surrounding the duo. When the studio made its final revisions to the poster, according to Heritage, it removed the images of Lando Calrissian, Boba Fett, and Cloud City, among others.
The final poster also had darker color schemes, while Kastel’s original version featured vibrant reds and oranges.
Heritage Auctions is the largest fine art and collectibles auction house, with locations in cities like New York, Dallas, Beverly Hills, San Francisco, Chicago, Palm Beach, London, Paris, Amsterdam and Hong Kong.
See the poster below.