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The poster was offered by Dallas saleroom Heritage Auctions on November 18, had been expected to make around $150,000.

The one sheet Style A design, measuring 2ft 3in x 3ft 5in (69cm x 1.04m),surpassed the previous auction record of $478,000 which was also set (twice) by Heritage.

Heritage had just sold the only known surviving Italian issue movie poster from 1946 for Casablanca in July 2017, which matched its own previous world record from November 2014 for an only known 1927 copy of the poster for London After Midnight.

Original Dracula film poster

The 1931 ‘Dracula’ film poster showing actor Bela Lugosi which sold for a premium-inclusive $525,800 (£398,300) at Heritage Auctions on November 18. The price was an auction record for a movie poster.

This particular poster style from Dracula depicts the menacing visage of actor Bela Lugosi, who transformed the character into the now familiar image. It was recently discovered in the San Diego, California, collection of a noted film historian.

The family of its long-time owner, Lt Col George J Mitchell, Jr, an Associate Member of the American Society of Cinematographers, placed the poster up for auction. Mitchell had owned the poster since the 1950s.

Mitchell’s son, Arthur Mitchell, said: “The reason my dad purchased the poster is because he loved horror films. He was drawn to the Bela Lugosi poster because it brought back childhood memories of seeing the film when it was first released.

“He remembered going to the theatre … and remembered that there was an ambulance stationed in the lobby, in case anyone was so scared they needed medical attention.”

The elder Mitchell was a long-time cinematographer and photographer, who after the Second World War and a 20-year career in the US Army, started a small film production company in San Diego. He did video work for AFL and NFL Films, the San Diego Zoo and training films for assorted branches of the military.

Heritage Auctions vintage posters director Grey Smith said: “It is a matter of opinion, but this poster probably is the most beautiful of all of the styles, and one of only two styles that pictures Bela Lugosi in realistic terms or a faithful rendering – the other is a photographic image.”