Sep 20, 2010, 2:57 AM - The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
With the amazing work going on here at he moment in regards to props from The Maltese Falcon,
i thought a dedicated thread might fly.......
It would be great to see what people have in their collections and anything else that relates
to the masterpiece. I`ll kick things off.
I was always entranced by the dialog in this film and never really saw it through a
collectors eyes until the announcments of the soon to be released magnificent props.
I wanted to put a display together to keep them, the wallet and dingus, together
so with only the space of a detolf shelf available, started looking around and came up with
Came across a location and period correct newspaper and apart from the purpose i needed it for
has been absolutely fascinating reading, especially to someone in Australia.
Found a very cheap modern candlestick telephone that is pretty much the same shape as Sams and
by replacing the pushbutton dial with the more correct period one i had left over from a
007 project and a coat of paint, will make a great,cheap prop.
The tobacco pouch which is also very similar to Sams came from ebay and i got four of them for
99c. Ive got 3 spare if anyone wants them. Only one of them has the correct round, bull tag.
The Brownie is from 1946 but is close enough, cant think of a detective who wouldnt have
a camera somewhere. It along with the cigerette case were my grandfathers so its good to keep
them active. The lighter was for my JB collection but will have to work something else there.
That pretty much fills up the shelf when the uber props arrive.
Sep 20, 2010, 1:15 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
I support the idea of an MF thread. I, like many others, have been working on setting up an office on the theme of Spade & Archer. As a collector and former PI the film has a wealth of meaning for me.
I began collecting the dingus in the 80's. It makes for an interesting collection as the first prop replica of the bird by Clifton Sheeley was interesting but not very accurate. It did generate some publicity as the first maltese falcon replica produced for sale. Sadly, Clifton Sheely died several years ago, having spent his life sculpting and instructing in sculpting.
This is from an article in the New York Times, 1988
Falcons as Fake as the Real Thing
By GLENN COLLINS
Published: November 1, 1988
Sweat glistened on the round cheeks of the fat man. ''By Gad, sir, now, after 17 years!'' His eyes were moist. He hefted the weighty bundle. Then his stubby fingers made short work of the twine that bound the newspaper wrappings in place.
As the statue stood revealed, it was almost possible to hear Sam Spade, Joel Cairo, Brigid O'Shaughnessy and Wilmer Cook give a collective gasp. There on the desk was a heavy black bird, coated with glossy enamel. The fat man's fingers twitched as he took out a gold pocket-knife. He began scraping the base of the statue with the blade.
Clearly, it was not the stuff that dreams are made of. ''It's a fake,'' he said hoarsely. ''It's not gold - not the falcon!'' The Cast of the Character
Actually, the statue on the desk wasn't even lead, like the one that Sydney Greenstreet assaulted in John Huston's movie of Dashiell Hammett's novel ''The Maltese Falcon.'' Nor had the falcon been delivered to the newspaper office as the dying act of Captain Jacoby, master of the La Paloma out of Hong Kong.
No, this statue was made of cast concrete and had come by parcel post. Its true origin was not the isle of Malta, but the mail-order business of a sculptor, Clifton Sheely, in Mercerville, N.J.
Mr. Sheely has already sold more than 100 of the statues after a single ad appeared in an issue of Film Comment magazine. ''I did the whole thing on a whim,'' he said. ''
Mr. Sheely's statues, which he sculptured to resemble the movie falcon, are 10 inches high, weigh 5 pounds and are cast of Hydrocal, a gypsum cement. The finish? Black lacquer. A Readable Wrapping
The statues arrive wrapped in newspaper and twine. As they must. ''It's really an icon of our movie culture, and I thought a lot of 'Falcon' buffs might like to hold one,'' said the 31-year-old Mr. Sheely, who teaches at the Johnson Technical School of Sculpture in Mercerville.
The falcons are available for $45 postpaid from the Clifton J. Sheely Company, P.O. Box 2569, Mercerville, N.J. 08619. A $250 custom-cast bronze version is also available for truly hopeless fanatics.
Unlike the fat man - Kasper Gutman, as Mr. Greenstreet's character was called in the 1941 movie - none of Mr. Sheely's customers think they're getting a golden falcon ''encrusted from beak to claw in the rarest jewels,'' as the film's prologue put it.
''Nobody has even asked for their money back yet,'' Mr. Sheely said."
Sep 20, 2010, 5:42 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Those birds from Clifton Sheedy must be quite valuable nowadays being the first.
I have to ask, as an ex PI were you ever in a situation that seemed straight out of a Hammett novel?
Sep 20, 2010, 6:09 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
I've been working on the office set dressing. I've picked up a second matching inkwell since this picture was taken. I've got a close enough ashtray too, still looking for the accurate one. I need to take an updated picture.
Sep 20, 2010, 10:37 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Sep 21, 2010, 11:22 AM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
This thread could prove to be very interesting!!
Great job on the phone, I've always loved these antique phones! Do you have any other screen grabs showing the phone in the movie from different angles?
Sep 21, 2010, 5:21 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
My falcon (can't bring myself to print, "...my dingus...") from John's Grill in S.F.
Sep 22, 2010, 11:41 AM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Thanks for the extra grabs!!!
Not sure if we have any antique phone experts out there, but I would be interested to find out what make of phone this is....
Sep 22, 2010, 12:18 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
I'm not an antique phone expert, but I am a working theatrical props master, and it looks like a 1920's Western Electric.
Sep 22, 2010, 12:35 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Thanks for the info! I've been looking through a few antique telephone dealers websites and I think you are correct. Nice phones but pretty expensive!
Sep 22, 2010, 3:46 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Yes, very expensive. I've done several shows that called for one, and I always modified one of the readily available 80's reproduction models (that had the spinning dial) or one of the currently Crosley replicas (and we replaced it with a spinning dial). The real thing, while beautiful, always commands a pricetag.
What I need to do is mold one and make a resin replica....yes......hmmm...
Sep 22, 2010, 3:48 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
there was a good thread about this on fedora lounge, the things in sam's office and quite a few were identified too.
Sep 23, 2010, 1:10 AM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Resin replicas of the candlestick phone is a great idea. Im sure thats not the only thing that could be repicated. If you could find all or most of the desk items, make resin copies and sell the complete Sam Spade desk set, shoot, Id buy one right now.
Sep 24, 2010, 7:37 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Updated collection, a few extra items here are not in the movie, (blotter, envelope moistener, fountain pen). The ashtray is looks the part but does not match the ones in the movie. The phone is actually an AE40 with an AE34 handset. At a casual glance, you can't tell the difference between it and a real AE34. The radio is an accurate RCA 15x. I'm rather disappointed that Spade only uses a pencil during the film, I'd love to have Spade's fountain pen, but no such luck. The one in the picture is a match for the "pen is mightier" pen from Last Crusade. I've had no luck finding a match for the wooden inkwell platform.
Sep 25, 2010, 7:10 AM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Here's a simple addition to your Falcon collection - the self-addressed envelope and parcel storage ticket that Sam sends to himself.
Sep 25, 2010, 4:33 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
MK Bird, Sctcarts and Eltee wallet set.
Sep 25, 2010, 7:27 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
That looks great, cant wait to get my wallet.
That replica is great airhead, did you make it yourself?
Last edited by Mr Webber; Sep 25, 2010 at 8:20 PM.
Sep 26, 2010, 7:48 AM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Yep. I found a vintage pre-posted envelope online and made the ticket from scratch. The envelope will actually print out on a single 8.5 X 11 sheet of paper (with the stamp) and cut and folds correctly.
* Yipes! I see that there's a topic over in paper threads with a stamp and a screen cap of the envelope and ticket! (I've been out of touch around here for a while...) *
Last edited by airhead; Sep 26, 2010 at 8:35 AM.
Sep 26, 2010, 10:12 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Sep 29, 2010, 10:46 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
NEW YORK (ACNI) – At a Sept. 24 auction at Guernsey’s, Oscar-nominated actor Leonardo DiCaprio was among a group of buyers paying $305,000 for a falcon statuette used in the 1941 film-noir classic The Maltese Falcon. The price included a 22% buyer’s premium.
The person actually lodging the bid was billionaire Stewart Rahr, owner of pharmaceutical and generics wholesaler Kinray, the largest privately owned pharmaceutical distributor in the world. Reportedly, both Rahr and DiCaprio were in attendance at the 123-lot auction titled “Iconic Objects and Documents.”
The resin falcon, weighing 4 pounds 5.4 ounces and standing 11½ inches tall, was discovered in New Jersey in 1991 by Emmy-winning producer/director Ara Chekmayan. Recognizing the Warner Brothers "WB 90456" serial number scratched into the base, Chekmayan began to research the figure extensively. He found that among those familiar with the production of the film, the consensus was that the resin copy was, indeed, the falcon that appeared in several 8- by 10-inch publicity photos taken on the set of the film and held in the hands of the film’s star, Humphrey Bogart.
Sep 29, 2010, 10:59 PM - Re: The Maltese Falcon - props, collections, anything really.
Wow, thanks for shareing, thats very impressive considering its the B bird.
If a group purchased this it may indicate that it will be used in a commercial venture and hopefully will be on display somewhere,
either that or Leo gets to have it every Wednesday......
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