In the RKO produced "The Falcon's Alibi" The Falcon (Tom Conway) protecting a stolen pearl necklace from pursuing thugs and rushing to the safety of a Post Office collection box is seen affixing Win the War stamps (Scott 905) on a parcel he constructed for the necklace out of a cigar box, brown paper from a lunch, and a bit of string. All in all an entertaining film which also starred the lovely Rita Corday, and the beautiful Jane Greer.
Another stamp collecting movie is the 1940 Columbia produced "The Lone Wolf Keeps a Date" The Lone Wolf, a reformed master jewel thief played by Warren William is in Havana Cuba to purchase a rare stamp to complete his Cuba collection which he is intending to show at a stamp exhibition in Miami. Anyway the Wolf shares a cab with a young lady to the Havana airport and then on to Miami. Upon arrival at the Miami airport and waiting for a cab the Wolf is set upon by Kidnapper thugs who mistakenly grab the Wolf's stamp collection instead of the $100,000 in ransom money the lady is carrying, and at that point the movie begins in earnest with the Wolf helping the lady, saving the life of a kidnapped man, protecting the $100,000 in ransom money, and most importantly regaining possession of his stamp collection.
I just saw Charade, a 1963 film starring Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn plus three others that became major stars. It is worth seeing just for the two stars, but because philately is an integral part of the plot, any stamp collecter will enjoy it. It is free on Amazon Prime and probably available or can be ordered at any public library.
It's kind of ironic that Audrey Hepburn starred in Charade, a movie about rare stamps, as she would later become the subject of a modern day rarity. In 2001, Deutsche Post was planning on issuing a stamp featuring Hepburn, who was shown with a cigarette holder in her mouth. Her son objected to the depiction of his mother smoking and Deutsche Post scrapped the idea for the stamp and ordered all 14 million of them destroyed. Three sheets of 10 were, however, sent to the German Ministry of Finance and were used in the mail. Five used copies were later found in kiloware lots and the first one was auctioned in 2006 for €53,000. The second sold for €69,000 and the third for €135,000. Number four went for €75,000 and number five for €67,000, after taxes and fees.
Hepburn's son, Sean Ferrer, was in possession of a mint block of 10 that Deutsche Post had sent him for his approval and decided to auction them in 2010 with all proceeds going to UNICEF, Hepburn's favorite charity. Against estimates of €500,000, it went for €430,000.
Hepburn is shown smoking a cigarette in Charade which in 1963 was still somewhat acceptable. By 2001 when the German stamp was issued attitudes had changed based on research showing the addiction and the medical hazards of smoking so it was reasonable that her heirs did not want her associated with it.
While making some screen-shots for the 1940 Charley Chase short "His Bridal Fright", I was reminded about the stamp-related plot!
Charley wants to marry a girl with a father who has the "finest collection west of the Rockies". Charley starts collecting stamps himself and manages to find the elusive "Pigmania Pigeon" stamp his girl's father is searching for. Of course, many stamps were injured in the making of this film, being a comedy and all...
That stamp miraculously survived being stuck to a police car tire as well ;-) Oh, and a dog's nose, too!
There is a quick visual gag where Charley is telling someone about the mail he has from all sorts of countries... when he gets to the one from Bali, he stops and looks at it with a magnifying glass and smiles... May have to look and see just what type of female was on Bali stamps in 1940!
"The Late Show" starring Art Carney starts with a stock book of rare stamps as the macguffin but the plot rapidly becomes convoluted and about everything but stamps. I can't remember now if you actually see any stamps or just the book.
It just occurred to me as I was reading this thread that "The Maltese Falcon" has a scene where Bogart mails himself the baggage receipt for the black bird. In all the umpteen times I've watched that film I never thought to try to see what the stamp was. Maybe next time.
I remembered from my early childhood the sitcom "I Married Joan" which starred the great American comedienne, Joan Davis as a ditzy housewife, and a pre- Mr.Magoo and pre- Gilligan's Island Jim Backus as her husband, Judge Bradley Stevens. About the only episode I could remember in any detail was one in which Joan accidentally used an expensive stamp on a letter, a "Mozambique purple", recently purchased by Brad, and how she has a dream where everyone keeps saying incredulously, "you lost his Mozambique purple??!!" I was easily able to find the episode titled, appropriately, "the Stamp", on youtube and discovered that it first aired on March 11th, 1953, and that Judge Stevens paid $350 for the stamp, a fair amount in those days when you could buy a decent new car for less than $2,000. It's a funny episode, those two actors worked very well together, and it was a pretty successful series, running for three seasons and over 90 episodes from 1952-1955.
I also remember watching I Married Joan, with the family. I was probably about 8, and it was at around the time my father introduced me to stamp collecting. Have no memory of any episodes, but still can remember most of the theme song, which ended:
To each his own, I deny that's why I married Joan.
Quote: I was wondering if there are novels about stamps collecting. I remember that I read a story about a kid collecting stamps in a French story during middle school but I forgot the title of the book.
It was probably Le Petit Nicolas et les Copains, written by René Goscinny and illustrated by Jean-Jacques Sempé. One of the chapters is about Nicolas and his friends collecting stamps.