You’ve purchased a wonderful cinema poster and unless you are still in the throes of student life you will probably want to frame it. Framing cinema posters can raise tricky questions, not least due to their different sizes. In this article we will look at some different options.

Framing Methods for Cinema Posters

Cost, appearance, fit, and protection are some of the factors to weigh up when deciding how to frame your cinema poster. We will look at three different framing methods in the context of these criteria. The frames we discuss are

  • the Snap Frame,
  • the Picture Frame and
  • the Custom Frame.     

Cost Of Framing

Let’s start with cost. A snap frame for a standard 40 X30 inch UK quad or a standard US One Sheet poster can be purchased and delivered for about £40. So what is a snap frame? The most distinguishable characteristic of this frame is that it opens from the front. The outer part of the frame is twisted back at 90 degrees allowing a pvc glazing to be removed and the poster to be placed on the backing. The glazing is replaced over the poster and the frame is closed in a snap clipping/motion. They provide great flexibility if wanting to rotate posters as the actions described can be done when the snap frame is hung on a wall. We’ve bought a snap from and we could not fault the robustness of the frame or the customer service.

‘Picture Frames’ for 40 x 30 inch posters tend to start at around £100 and £140 for a frame with a mount (discussed below). Picture frames open from the back, the poster is placed against the glazing, or a mount , and the backing is replaced before fastening the back. Both and have a large selection of these frames and importantly their website enables the filtering of frames by imperial size (inches).

Cinema Poster Gallary offer ‘Custom Framing’ for a 40 x 30 inch poster costs £180. This price includes a mount and delivery to the UK. We discuss the custom framing service provided by Cinema Poster Gallery in this article.

Appearance of Framing

The actual frame, glazing and mount are factors to consider here. The frame style is really a matter of personal taste. They can be got in different colours with different types of wood etc. When we refer to a mount, we are talking about the white border you see between the frame and the poster. Every poster on our site has been displayed with a mount. Due to the nature of clip frames, they don’t come with mounts. As mentioned above mounts can be purchased for picture frames. However bear in mind that if you purchase a 40 x 30 inch frame and a mount for your quad poster, the mount will cover the outside of the poster.

Fit of Frame

Fit can cause complications when using off-the-shelf (snap and picture frame) options. Although cinema posters come in standard sizes, posters can sometimes be different to the standard size by a quarter or half an inch. This is generally not an issue with quad posters but we have found instances where authentic US One-Sheet posters can be 26.75 x 41 inches (as opposed to standard 27 x 41 inches). This can create issues with snap and picture frames which won’t occur with custom framing. It is also important to remember that the US One Sheet size changed from a height of 41 to 40 inches in the 80s though picture frames can be bought to accommodate both sizes. It is always best to measure your poster before buying an off-the-shelf frame.

Protection of Frame

Some factors to consider with regard to protecting your poster are the glazing, a mount and how the poster is sealed. Glazing is what protects a poster from sunlight and stops the colours from fading. Custom framing we offer will always have 99.7% UV protection. Off-the-shelf picture frames can offer 99.7% UV protection, so check if a frame has this before buying. Snap frames have PVC glazing which doesn’t have UV protection. For obvious reasons don’t leave posters that receive direct sunlight in snap frames for long periods.

A mount also offers protection in that it separates the glazing from the poster. This should prevent the nightmare scenario of the poster getting stuck to the glazing.

A custom frame will be sealed at the back while picture frames can be opened at the back. We expect a good picture frame would not allow any condensation to seep through the back, however the backing of customised frame provides that little bit more certainty.

Hopefully this article will simplify your decision on framing, and not the opposite :) Do, of course, reach out with any questions on this or any other subject. We always love hearing from you.

On the left is the back of a sealed custom frame. The picture frame on the right has a backing panel that can be removed by adjusting the clips.

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Photo from left to right show an Italian Locandina (top left), Photobusta (bottom left), 2 Foglio and 4 Foglio Cinema Posters to scale. Rest of the World Cinema Poster Sizes
Country of Origin Cinema Posters

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