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Hollywood Stars

Hollywood Stars by Maple Leaf B.V., Amsterdam, 1957

These cards feature Hollywood film stars from the 1950s, all of which are very beautiful and curvaceous. The costumes are feminine and colourful, but modest. The names of the film stars and the printer of the cards are unidentified. The stylish and distinctive typography for the indices gives the feel of an “art deck”. The set was probably published by Maple Leaf B.V., chewing gum manufacturers, with registered office in Amsterdam, around 1957.

Not all the stars have been photo matched yet... so we are still awaiting verification.

Eight of Hearts- Lana Turner
Ace of Clubs- Kim Novak
Jack of Clubs - Abbe Lane
Jack of Spades - Jane Russell
Joker - Jane Powell
5 of Diamonds - Jeanne Crain
7 of Diamonds - Marie Wilson
9 of Diamonds - Jane Russell

Above: ‘Hollywood Stars’ deck published by Maple Leaf Gum B.V., Amsterdam, and manufactured by Speelkaartenfabriek Nederland, 1957. Card size = 2¼ x 3½" which is slightly smaller than standard decks. They were probably sold as a full deck rather than singly inside packs of gum. A quantity of these decks was found in 1969 when the factory closed. Images courtesy Amit Benyovits.

Right: the gum might destroy at least one card in the pack, maybe more. That may explain the rarity of these sets. If they were cut from sheets then short prints were also possibile. For example if a set has 52 cards plus a Joker, it may have been produced in sheets of 48 with some cards being duplicated (double prints) while other cards only produced as single prints aka short prints. Those relatively scarce cards carried a premium price.

They came in packets like these

The name Maple Leaf was a tribute to the Canadian liberators   more

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

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Curator and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996. He is a former committee member of the IPCS and was graphics editor of The Playing-Card journal for many years. He has lived at various times in Chile, England and Wales and is currently living in Extremadura, Spain. Simon's first limited edition pack of playing cards was a replica of a seventeenth century traditional English pack, which he produced from woodblocks and stencils.


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