The Museum’s collection of film, television, and video game licensed merchandise includes over 20,000 artifacts from 1914 to the present. It is one of only a handful of such collections in North America and, perhaps, the largest anywhere in the world in terms of size, scope, and range. The collection reveals important connections between consumerism, fan culture, and nearly one hundred years of moving image history. The selling and distributing of star images to moviegoers became commonplace by the 1920s. Today, licensed merchandise is a multi-billion dollar industry, integral to marketing and promoting the moving image, and an indispensable revenue stream for the makers of movies, television programs, and video games.
Among the diverse array of artifacts in the Museum’s licensed merchandise collection are clothing, accessories, and sewing patterns; commercial packaging; dolls and figurines; games and toys; housewares; pin-up posters; postcards and other paper cards; school and desk supplies; sheet music and song books; sound recordings; souvenir books, novelizations, and comics.
View thousands of catalog records for licensed merchandise artifacts on the Museum’s Collection database.