Rare 1983 French Jedi Billboard Prepped for Display

Pete Vilmur | October 11, 2011

Star Wars poster collector John Williams (no, not that John Williams) recently linked us to a blog maintained by poster restoration studio Poster Mountain to share a rare insider’s view of mounting a billboard-size Return of the Jedi poster on linen.

“Linen-backing” — a reversible technique which bonds a poster to a sturdy, acid-free linen/substrate to both strengthen the original and make it easier to display — is the preferred method of conservators to preserve fragile or large pieces of paper, and we can think of no more stunning an example to showcase the technique than Williams’ uber-rare 1983 French Return of the Jedi billboard, a strikingly beautiful artwork by French illustrator Michel Jouin measuring a monstrous 118″ X 156″ (which means you’d need a 10-foot high wall just to display it!).

“I have owned this poster since the mid-eighties and have wanted to do this since then,” says Williams. “It has only been opened 3 times — once when I bought it, once to make sure that it was complete upon delivery, and once for linen-backing.”

The huge, 8-panel poster is quite rare and few, if any, have ever been linen-backed for display. Williams is just glad to finally have a chance to display such an exceptional piece of early Star Wars advertising artwork. “Life is good in the Star Wars poster universe for me.”

Click here to see step-by-step just how this rare poster masterpiece was prepared for viewing for the first time in nearly 30 years…


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