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The Brian Desmond Hurst Collection

Bloomfield Auctions | The Brian Desmond Hurst Collection of Movie Posters, Lobby Cards & Press Packs, Gentleman’s Collection (Part 3) of Coins, Antiques&Collectibles

Items from Famed Belfast Born Film Director to Go Under the Hammer

Bloomfield Auctions’ Sale to Include Film Art of Brian Desmond Hurst

A SERIES of rare film posters and items of film art relating to Brian Desmond Hurst, one of Northern Ireland’s greatest directors, who is credited to films such as Scrooge, Tom Brown’s Schooldays, Malta Story and Dangerous Moonlight, are set to go under the hammer during a special sale at Bloomfield Auctions next Tuesday (30th April).  

Born in east Belfast in 1895 to a working-class family of ship builders, Brian was enlisted as a Private in the British Army during World War One before emigrating to Canada where he attended the Toronto College of Art before learning film direction from his greatest friend, the legendary John Ford, in Hollywood.

During what was known as the ‘Golden Age of Hollywood,’ Brian directed a number of blockbuster movies including the Christmas classic, Scrooge and Ourselves Alone, a controversial film about the Irish War of Independence, which was banned in Northern Ireland due to its political nature. Hurst maintained a strong Irish output throughout his career of more than 30 films made across three continents – notably Riders to the Sea and A Letter From Ulster – and always claimed that film was an art form.

Following a recent six-month exhibition in the Ulster Museum which celebrated his life’s work, Allan Esler Smith, Brian’s great great nephew and administer of the Hurst estate, says that next week’s auction is a rare chance for film fans to own a piece of history from a classic time.

“From somewhat humble beginnings in east Belfast, Brian certainly led a spectacular career and cemented himself as one of the greatest artists of his time,” Allan explained.

“Brian was remarkably talented as a film director and his creativity has stood the test of time as his films still remain firm favourites to this very day among audiences.

“We received a great deal of interest from film fans during the recent exhibition in the Ulster Museum and we expect the upcoming auction to be no different. This sale is a once in a lifetime opportunity to own a piece of rare film history and art.”

Next week’s sale at Bloomfield Auctions will consist of a number of vintage film posters from some of Brian’s best-known movies from the 1930s to the 1960s, alongside original lobby cards, press packs and other items.

 Karl Bennett, Bloomfield Auctions Managing Director added: “At Bloomfield Auctions, we are synonymous with unique and historic sales and this one is certainly amongst the most interesting.

“It’s a huge privilege and honour for us to host a sale of items belonging to not only one of Northern Ireland’s greatest exports but of Hollywood’s as well. Especially at a time when film and television is now one of the key industries here in Northern Ireland and Hurst was the pathfinder for all who follow”.

“We have some beautiful posters for sale, as well as press packs and lobby cards, which give a great insight into life as a leading film director at that time. These items will be ‘must haves’ for film fans all over the world and as such, I’m expecting to see global interest in the items we have for sale.”

The Brian Desmond Hurst auction will take place at Bloomfield Auctions on Tuesday 30th April at 1pm. Bidding will take place online and in person. Visit: to register.