The United States Postal Service has unveiled a new collection of ‘forever’ stamps that aims to commemorate four prominent film directors and their most famous works.
Titled the “Great Film Directors,” the collection was features portraits of directors Frank Capra, John Ford, John Huston and Billy Wilder, along with scenes from their most well-known films.
During a dedication ceremony Thursday morning at the Directors Guild of America in the West Hollywood area, USPS district manager Eduardo Ruiz told the roughly 150 audience members that the collection -- originally released May 23 -- is intended to bring filmmakers “out from behind their cameras” and place them in the spotlight.
"Movies offer a window into our history and heritage and tell the story of America," Ruiz said. "Similar to movies, stamps honor our past and celebrate our achievements while encouraging us to learn more about the people, places, and ideas that shape the American experience."
USPS spokesman Richard Maher said the new set represents the Postal Service's first collection of stamps featuring movie directors, though the Postal Service has released individual stamps of film directors in the past, such as a 1998 stamp of famed thriller director Alfred Hitchcock.
Capra's stamp features a portrait of the filmmaker with a scene from his movie "It Happened One Night," while Ford's stamp pairs his portrait with a scene from "The Searchers." "The Maltese Falcon" is on the Huston stamp and "Some Like It Hot" is on the Wilder stamp.
All four directors received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Directors Guild of America and have collectively won 15 Academy Awards.
The stamps were designed by USPS Art Director Derry Noyes while the images were created by illustrator Gary Kelley.
"They are 'forever' stamps, so like all other 'forever stamps, they will always be good," Maher said. "They'll never get stale."
The postal service releases about 20 to 25 new commemorative collections every year, based on recommendation from members of the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee, Maher said. He added that committee members aim to "really capture the American experience" when considering new stamps designs.
"It is our hope that these Forever stamps will encourage Americans to see their classic movies that gave us a mirror on our country's character and values," said Jean Picker Firstenerg, president emerita of the American Film Institute and chair of the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee, during the ceremony.