Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Ransom Center reveals stunning Houdini 3-sheet

The magic poster exhibition at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas in Austin is now closed, but that doesn't mean there aren't still treasures to behold. Our friend Eric Colleary, Cline Curator of Theatre & Performing Arts collections, recently uncovered this stunner!

This is a three-sheet (41"x81") poster for Houdini's 1922 movie The Man From Beyond. This was created by the Otis Lithograph Co. of Cleveland, who also created many classic magic posters. I've only ever seen a small black and white unfinished image of this sheet in The Man From Beyond pressbook (below). Seeing it finished and in full color is just spectacular! The poster depicts a cliff fight between Howard Hillary (Houdini) and a villain. Guess who goes over the edge?

The Harry Ransom Center's Houdini Collections are open to the public and available to search via finding aids at their official website.

Thank you Eric for sharing this amazing poster.



  1. Wow, that's gorgeous! Amazing find. I love how the first "H" in "Houdini" is knocked off balance. Thanks to Eric and to you, John, for sharing. (I don't believe I've ever seen a color poster of the Harry-in-ice images; I wonder if any still exist.)

    1. Yes, I LOVE that toppling H. That's a detail that just makes the poster for me.

      I've not seen any of the ice posters in color. But seeing how color is used on these, you gotta know they are stunners. Wonder if the HRC has any of those tucked away? :)

  2. What a beauty that three sheet is! Such a fantastic find. Thank you Eric and John!

  3. Yes -- thank you very much for sharing it!