When a studio offers a package deal
of multiple movie titles to be shown together as one feature, they produce
a poster highlighting BOTH movie titles. These posters are referred
to as combos. The majority of the combo posters were issued for "B"
grade movies, particularly those shown at drive-ins.
The two most common sizes of combo
posters are one sheets and window
cards, although they have been produced in other sizes. The manner
in which the movies are displayed on the posters vary, based on how
the movie studio wants to promote each film. For example, the top half
may have the artwork of one movie, while the bottom half has the artwork
of the other. Other posters are split vertically down the middle, each
movie’s artwork being presented equally. In still other cases, the studio
may focus more on one movie, with just a notation on the bottom saying
A combo poster always reflects two
full length feature presentations. This should not be confused with
posters that have a tag indicating a featurette."
A "featurette" is a short film clip that is shown before a feature movie.
A poster with a tag like this is not considered a combo.
Combo posters are normally released
for studio-promoted double features (as opposed to double feature presentations
planned by an individual theatre). Although rare today, double features
were extremely common prior to the 1980's and combo posters were used
more frequently during that time.
Combo posters are normally reissues/rereleases
and rarely command the same value as their individual counterparts.
However, if the artwork on the combo is more attractive or unusual in
some way, the combo may command more than the individual poster, depending
on the title. There are also instances where a studio releases a major
film that was several years old and its sequel as a combo, or 2 different
movies of the same star, creating an interesting piece for the collector.