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Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 12:01
by On0r74
... & I hear tell no question is too silly to ask. I'm about to test that theory. :lol: :oops:

There is a movie I like (called: "The Hunted"), & in the film a character receives several letters from another person. On one of the envelopes is a stamp that I've been hoping to identify.

I considered that the stamp might have been something fictitious (made for the film), but I believe it would've been too much trouble to bother "mocking up" a stamp when real ones are so plentiful.

Some background which could help (or complicate) a potential search: the letters would likely have been sent from overseas (meaning outside the U.S.), & the time period of sending would probably have been between 2000 - 2003.

That info, plus these sort of grainy screen-captures, are basically all I've got to offer in the way of clues:

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

I thought of this question with the hopes that someone here might look at the pix & maybe give me a lead or direction on where to look for one, or even better, immediately recognize the stamp, OR MAYBE even provide a higher-quality picture. :mrgreen:

Anyway, thanks for any help ahead of time, & sorry if this is too off-topic.

Re: ITT: I pose a potentially odd question...

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 12:11
by Allanswood
Hi Onor74, this is great! Detective work - nice.

Are you sure its not sent from the US to Canada? The perfs look a little large, like the sticker stamps the US is using.

I guess you've already looked through a US catalogue?

So the left hand top cancel (not that its real) says "US ARMY - TPO XXXX"?

Had a look at what the movie is about, but haven't watched it so - the time period and Army... sent from a Middle Eastern country?

For the main image in the centre of the stamp I'd suggest a pair of horses and a wagon

Re: ITT: I pose a potentially odd question...

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 12:22
by skilo54
On0r74 wrote:
Image
Hey there friend :)

I have worked in the film and television industry on and off for over 12 years, just recently getting back in to it again.

What I think you are seeing is the handy work of the props dept with "blackout" marks made with different colored markers. This masks the true identity and keeps it camera friendly while remaining "real" looking for the brief time on-screen. This is a very common practice in film and television.

I think that unless someone in the props or art department were a stamp collector, or this film is a period piece, this stamp is most likely a current issue of the year the film was made, from the country where the film was made and essentially vandalized in the name of art. :lol:

Good Luck with your detective work, sorry I can't offer any suggestion as to what stamp this is :|

Have a good one,

SKilo54

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 13:18
by jugoslavija_post
Those perfs look like the self adhesive ones in New Zealand. :idea:

It also looks like it might say New Zealand at the bottom.

The "US ARMY" pmk looks like "US ARMY A.P.O. 6771" :?:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 15:09
by On0r74
First of all, thanks for all the help so far! To include the Mods altering the thread title to be more specific, much appreciated.
Allanswood wrote:Are you sure its not sent from the US to Canada? The perfs look a little large, like the sticker stamps the US is using.
No, I'm not sure; it could VERY well be from US to Canada.
Allanswood wrote:So the left hand top cancel (not that its real) says "US ARMY - TPO XXXX"?
This is actually why I assumed the stamp might have come from overseas, the Cancel says: "US ARMY - APO XXXX", which in fact indicates that the letter was sent from out of the country. HOWEVER, I may be giving the movie-makers too much credit, & they may have put that Cancel on there to try to make it look more "militarily authentic" (if that makes any sense).
Allanswood wrote:Had a look at what the movie is about, but haven't watched it so - the time period and Army... sent from a Middle Eastern country?
Time period is around 2003 (maybe a year earlier), & it very well could have come from the Middle East. The movie begins in Kosovo. I looked at that part of the film again, & one of the other envelopes (same sender/same recipient) has a London Cancellation. *shrugs* So I guess it could have come from anywhere...
Allanswood wrote:For the main image in the centre of the stamp I'd suggest a pair of horses and a wagon
That was my initial thought as well, so I'm glad to hear someone else say it.

skilo54 wrote:Hey there friend :)

I have worked in the film and television industry on and off for over 12 years, just recently getting back in to it again.
That is totally slick. I am envious.
skilo54 wrote:What I think you are seeing is the handy work of the props dept with "blackout" marks made with different colored markers. This masks the true identity and keeps it camera friendly while remaining "real" looking for the brief time on-screen. This is a very common practice in film and television. I think that unless someone in the props or art department were a stamp collector, or this film is a period piece, this stamp is most likely a current issue of the year the film was made, from the country where the film was made and essentially vandalized in the name of art. :lol:
I cannot disagree with any of that. Definitely possible. Most definitely.

jugoslavija_post wrote:Those perfs look like the self adhesive ones in New Zealand. :idea:

It also looks like it might say New Zealand at the bottom.

The "US ARMY" pmk looks like "US ARMY A.P.O. 6771" :?:
Thanks, I'll do some research for New Zealand stamps. I also agree with your assessment of the APO, except it looked like "6571" to me. Could be either really. In addition, there is some artistic license going on there as well, as an actual APO would be followed by 5 numbers, just like a US zip code.

Oh, one more thing, I decided to try something to see if I could get any clearer results. I played the DVD on my HDTV, & took photos of the screen with my digital camera. It seems to show a little more detail:

Image Image

Image Image

Image Image

Does that help any further?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 21:53
by ozstamps
Image

Image
A US ARMY APO for sure .. a WEIRD thing for props dept to Invent!

https://www.machinecancel.org/new_book.html

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 22:31
by gavin-h
On0r74 wrote:Image
Great question, On0r74 8)

The look/feel of the stamp on the "other" cover on this still made me wonder about Iraq. :arrow:

Also, is the cachet with the flag below the US Army APO cachet significant - maybe a blow-up of that would help :idea:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 22:47
by librarianc
Could the central stamp image be large animals or livestock........elephants or oxen, etc.........southern Asian type image? Perhaps India or Pakistan? Malaysian?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 22:52
by librarianc
gavin-h wrote:
Also, is the cachet with the flag below the US Army APO cachet significant - maybe a blow-up of that would help :idea:
This appears to be a generic airmail logo - I can make out AIR MAIL and PAR AVION and assume the third part of the phrase is the same - possibly in Spanish or German

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 23:01
by skilo54
ozstamps wrote:
Image

Image
A US ARMY APO for sure .. a WEIRD thing for props dept to Invent!

https://www.machinecancel.org/new_book.html
I agree with you 100% Glen, the postmark, stamp and the envelope are probably real, and not invented. I think the props department has altered the STAMP using broad tipped permanent markers and a Q-Tip dipped in alcohol to disguise the true identity of this STAMP.

Have a good one,

Skilo54

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 23:23
by ozstamps
Image
Top stamp also looks weird.

The main stamp is a white cow facing right with a dark calf in front of it I think?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 23:39
by Brummie
librarianc wrote: This appears to be a generic airmail logo - I can make out AIR MAIL and PAR AVION and assume the third part of the phrase is the same - possibly in Spanish or German
You are right and the third part is correo aƩreo

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 17 Jun 2010 23:57
by Allanswood
I thought the top stamp looked like a citadel or castle? Or am I on the wrong top stamp?

I've gone through the US and Canada catalogues as the central sepia/brown/maroon image (on the Army envelope) looked so familiar (1920's to 1960's) - but can't place it with either country up until 1995.

But those perfs are just too huge for a regular stamp.

Re: ITT: I pose a potentially odd question...

Posted: 18 Jun 2010 00:03
by skilo54
skilo54 wrote:
On0r74 wrote:
Image

Could this be a "Stamp on Stamp" ? In this screenshot it looks like it the central image could be a vignette surrounded by a three sided frame, with that being surrounded by a white border.

Anyways, here is a list of people who may really know the answer, the art dept. crew from the film:

Image

Maybe someone here knows one of these folks, I have heard it is a small world after all :lol:

Off to do some stuff I guess :|

Good Luck everyone!

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 18 Jun 2010 06:20
by gavin-h
Ray Lovasz - Propmaker would probably be a good place to start :idea:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 15:49
by On0r74
Thanks again for all the help everyone!

Well, I looked around for some contact info for the propmaker listed above & didn't have any luck.

I've been doing a lot more research & found some coincidental-ish things as I went. First of all, within the story of the film, the main character has been trying to get in contact with his mentor for several years. So, as you can see from my previous screencaps, the mentor character has been receiving a lot of letters.

As I was searching through some online catalogs, I happened upon two of the OTHER stamps in the scene:

Image

Image Image

Apparently, the Rugby stamp is British (you can see the "LONDON" cancellation mark on the on-screen stamp), with a 1995 issue date. The American flag stamp is of U.S. origin (not sure I really needed to specify that, but I like to be thorough), & issued in 1999.

There is another stamp visible (in the second picture of my first post) which I haven't found. I tried to make out the cancellation on that one, but I can't quite see it.

My feeling is that the mystery stamp that I'm looking for is likely an existing [un-tampered with] postage stamp, since I can't figure why they would alter one, but not the others. *shrugs* In addition, I also feel that the mystery stamp would probably have been issued between 1999 - 2003.

I believe this because (I'll try to make a long story short) the letter from that envelope talks about him having recently moved to Portland, OR, & having met (& started dating) a local woman.

When the woman is interrogated by the authorities, she states that she has only known the character for around 8 months. (BTW, there is some discontinuity with the dates in the film, so the year could be 2001 or 2003) So I feel that was probably the most recent letter.

ANYWAY, I'm not really sure I needed to give out all that info, I just wanted to let anyone following the thread know that the other postage stamps were authentic, which also gives my thread a quick bump for anyone who may not have seen it (or forgotten about it). :mrgreen:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 16:48
by aethelwulf
On0r74 wrote:Image Image

Image Image
My background is in art history...have you ever gone to a museum and seen an ancient piece of sculpture or bronze on display, and the description card tells you that there's mythological or biblical scenes shown, and all you see are a bunch of weathered lumps? Yep, that's how I felt during some of my courses in uni. :lol:

Looking at the central vignette here, I'd say the whitish background area is sky. As for the figural group in the foreground, its been suggested they are oxen and the stamp thus SE Asian. But what about camels? Thus the stamp would be a Middle East origin. Fits with the 2001-2003 time period of the film's story (ie. mission in Afghanistan, war in Iraq).

On the other hand, maybe this is a personalized stamp, such as produced by stamps.com or zazzle.com, then modified as Skilo mentioned?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 17:09
by aethelwulf
Allanswood wrote:I thought the top stamp looked like a citadel or castle? Or am I on the wrong top stamp?

I've gone through the US and Canada catalogues as the central sepia/brown/maroon image (on the Army envelope) looked so familiar (1920's to 1960's) - but can't place it with either country up until 1995.
I also noticed that top stamp. I've cropped the original picture to get a detail of it:

Image

My first thought was 'citadel' when I saw it. Zooming in using the photoviewer on my computer, the hill on which the building sits appears greenish...not the beige colour one would expect if it were an image of a building in the desert. Can't make out the postmark on the cover though.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 17:17
by aethelwulf
On0r74 wrote:Image Image
On further study (I'm devoting too much time at work to staring at this :?), I would say that the stamp's central design area is composed of 3 parts: large centre image of animals; left panel is a piece of metalwork, ie. a bronze cauldron; right panel possibly a map?

As for the border areas...the top left corner is a bit 'blobby'...maybe someone has used black-felt marker to obscure a face value. On the other hand, if you look at it the way you would stare at a cloud, it looks like a chicken facing right. The register across the bottom could either be a line of text or a decorative border...I'm leaning to the former, as the black blobs seem to be orderly, as in large-font writing.

Going to rest my eyes now :?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 17:26
by fromdownunder
I have watched this thread from the start. My first thought on the "stamp" was Saudi Arabia (and yes I have seen the movie). I even thought I recognised it, and I really felt that I saw RSA at the bottom.

But it is entirely possible, as has already been suggested, that this was "made up" and not a real stamp.

I do recall reading once upon a time that "real" USA stamps could not be falsely postmarked and shown in USA produced movies, so that Producers had to use pretend stamps if they were showing postmarked letters, but I googled and googled, and could not confirm this. It is probably an Urban Legend.

norm

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 17:48
by aethelwulf
fromdownunder wrote:I have watched this thread from the start. My first thought on the "stamp" was Saudi Arabia (and yes I have seen the movie). I even thought I recognised it, and I really felt that I saw RSA at the bottom.

But it is entirely possible, as has already been suggested, that this was "made up" and not a real stamp.

I do recall reading once upon a time that "real" USA stamps could not be falsely postmarked and shown in USA produced movies, so that Producers had to use pretend stamps if they were showing postmarked letters, but I googled and googled, and could not confirm this. It is probably an Urban Legend.
[emphasis mine]

I can understand why the USPS might come up with a bureaucratic-sounding thing like that...while stamp collectors would say "why should they object to a mint stamp being cancelled, thus rendered worthless for postal duty and giving them pure profit?", the USPS is probably thinking along the lines of copyright protection and royalties (intellectual property rights in effect)...

It's stretching the idea of IP, but just as you have to pay a royalty if you use more than a certain number of bars of the song "Happy Birthday" in a production, the USPS could argue that its stamp designs are copyright material, and you can't 'reproduce' or 'use' them without permission. As I say, its stretching the idea of ownership to say you're not alllowed to portray a stamp you have cancelled yourself. That would be like fashion designers clamouring for royalties if someone wears a readily-identifiable piece of their clothing in a film.

But if that rule were true, that you can't show USA stamps, what about this still from the film?

Image

Furthermore, if the props people were prevented from using USA stamps, rather than go to the time and trouble of designing their own, then printing and perforating them, they could just pop out to a stamp shoppe and pick up anything pretty from a faraway country that looked 'right' on the envelope. After all, 1) we're talking about a fleeting shot in the story, and only stamp collectors would be attuned to noticing these things and 2) if Saudi Arabia or Kazakhstan or Mongolia have a rule against cancelling their stamps and using them as props in films, would they ever find out their stamp(s) had been used in such a way, and if they did, would they bother going through the time and expense of suing the producers?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 17:51
by aethelwulf
On0r74 wrote:Image

Image Image
The props designers are obviously not collectors :lol:. Both letters are clearly addressed to Canada, yet the USA one carries only domestic letter-rate postage, while the UK one has a 19p stamp (domestic 2nd class?)

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 25 Jun 2010 19:15
by muruk
aethelwulf wrote:The props designers are obviously not collectors :lol:. Both letters are clearly addressed to Canada, yet the USA one carries only domestic letter-rate postage, while the UK one has a 19p stamp (domestic 2nd class?)
I believe that international military mail has at times been carried by defence force postal services at domestic letter rates as a concession to the troops and their families ... so this may not be significant.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 01 Jul 2010 12:53
by On0r74
Small, but fairly fruitless update.

After much searching, I actually found the propmaker (Ray Lovasz) on 'Facebook'. I asked him about the stamps, & here is his response:

"no pix. the stamps could have been printed in a studio print shop. could be real. could be anything. propmakers are actually set carpenters, welders etc. this would have been in 'property' or 'props' dept. 'set dec or set dressing' is also possible. it's a 2nd unit shot which means it was not shot when the main scenes/actors were shot but done as a pick up shot on a different day by a different crew with a stand in's hands unless the camera actually pans up and you see the actor in one continuous uncut/unedited clip. set dec/dressing is anything that's a prop that is not touched by the talent. 'prop' dept handles props that actors physically touch or handle. not sure if it's props for 2nd unit/stand ins. could be set dec. sorry i couldn't be more help."

So, now I guess I'll see if I can contact any of the other names in the credit list that are in "property", "props", "set decoration", or "set dressing". Anyway, the search continues... :wink:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 01 Jul 2010 13:02
by iomoon
Hopefully you'll find someone with a better command of grammar!

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 01 Jul 2010 14:29
by aethelwulf
iomoon wrote:Hopefully you'll find someone with a better command of grammar!
As the propmaker himself stated, people in the props dept are "carpenters, welders, etc"....AFAIK the vocational schools for these trades focus more on not cutting off your fingers or burning down the building than on erudite communication.

(The members of my college at uni had a reputation for being snobbish, and I fit right in :P)

Interesting point he makes though, I actually have always wondered what the 1st unit/2nd unit meant in the credits (if the closing music is good, yes I sit through credits).

So even though these covers get close-ups in the film, they're just considered 'set decoration'. :o

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 01 Jul 2010 14:50
by fromdownunder
If anybody has ever seen the magnificent Audrey Hepburn/Cary Grant movie Charade, and/or it's revolting remake The Truth About Charlie , when it comes to stamps, I suspect that the Producers devoted about 20 seconds of research into stamps and that this was done by the 16 year old who was hired to fetch the coffee between takes.

Stamps were absolutely essential to the plots of this script, and the Producers managed to get absolutely everything wrong that it was possible to get wrong, including sticking the three most expensive stamps in the world (except that some of them do not exist) onto an envelope, which is handled dozens of times during the movie (I am talking about Charade here - The Truth about Charlie does not deserve the title of Movie.

Norm

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 01 Jul 2010 15:15
by aethelwulf
fromdownunder wrote:If anybody has ever seen the magnificent Audrey Hepburn/Cary Grant movie Charade, and/or it's revolting remake The Truth About Charlie , when it comes to stamps, I suspect that the Producers devoted about 20 seconds of research into stamps and that this was done by the 16 year old who was hired to fetch the coffee between takes.

Stamps were absolutely essential to the plots of this script, and the Producers managed to get absolutely everything wrong that it was possible to get wrong, including sticking the three most expensive stamps in the world (except that some of them do not exist) onto an envelope, which is handled dozens of times during the movie (I am talking about Charade here - The Truth about Charlie does not deserve the title of Movie.
Oh yes I saw both several years ago. When the remake came out I watched the original first, then went to the cinema, and like you cringed at what the story had become.

As I recall, the stamps were stuck on the envelope as a way of smuggling them or disguising them, something to that effect...after all, a MNG copy of a Post Office Mauritius etc is better than nothing. The remake was complete rubbish, in that one of the "priceless" stamps was just some French colonial-era Madagascar pictorial defin.

But to non-collectors, would they know the difference? Its akin to watching a sci-fi film...astro-physicists will sit and shake their heads, decrying "that's not possible" "the writers got it all wrong" but would someone who's not a rocket scientist know the difference?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 03 Jul 2010 12:19
by On0r74
iomoon wrote:Hopefully you'll find someone with a better command of grammar!
:lol: Well, at least he took the time to answer me. I guess he could have just as easily ignored me altogether...

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 09:57
by On0r74
So - - - after DOZENS more hours of scouring various resources (and coming up empty-handed), I wanted to try one last thing.

I decided to see if I could find a "ripped" High-Definition broadcast of this film on the Internet. To clarify, even though this movie is not available [yet] in blu-ray, SOMETIMES television stations (usually overseas) will broadcast an HD copy of a film over their HD channels. AND every now and then, you'll find that someone has converted it to a computer-friendly format & uploaded it.

Anyway, to make a long story short, I was able to get a 1080p-quality screen-capture from the end piece of the movie:

Image

Using this picture, one can clearly see that the bottom of the stamp is covered in letters, but I was unable to read it straight-out. I thought the first two letters were 'BO' or 'DO'. So I decided that I would start searching FreeStampCatalogue.com (using 'country' as the search criteria) for stamps from any country beginning with 'BO' or 'DO'. And since one of the other stamps was from 1995, I extended my search back to encompass 1995 - 2002.

And wouldn't you know it, I get halfway through 1996 in the 'Bosnia' section, & SHAZAM:
:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

:shock:

Image
*PHEW*

This may sound odd, but after all this work, I almost feel like I've completed some kind of quest or something. Considering how many BAJILLION stamps there are in the world, I may go out searching for the Ark of the Covenant next. :lol:

Anyway, big thanks again for everyone's help; now maybe I can start enjoying OTHER stamps again... :wink:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 10:01
by jugoslavija_post
Nice job! I wonder why the perfs on the envelope are so large?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 10:04
by jugoslavija_post
The stamp is Scott #251.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 08 Jul 2010 14:03
by aethelwulf
On0r74 wrote:Image

This may sound odd, but after all this work, I almost feel like I've completed some kind of quest or something. Considering how many BAJILLION stamps there are in the world, I may go out searching for the Ark of the Covenant next.
Congratulations!

That's one stamp down, how about the other one? Maybe also Bosnian, someone got 'lazy' and just took 2 stamps from the same country?

If you want to go exploring, the Ark and the Holy Grail were already discovered by Indiana Jones. :lol: If you believe of course that the Grail is in Petra, and that all those millions of tourists haven't stumbled on it yet. :roll: If you do go searching, just remember, "Only a penitent man may pass". Oh, and don't wear a Nazi uniform.

I'll stick to buying junk boxes for treasure-hunting, no need to troop through desert or jungle or dodge ancient booby traps. 8)

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 05:29
by brcStamps
Very interesting thread and great detective work On0r74.

I will have to make a high def capture of a "stamp" shown on a letter from the TV series Caprica (Battlestar Galactica franchise). It would be interesting to see if a real stamp was used.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 05:33
by brcStamps
Nice job! I wonder why the perfs on the envelope are so large?
I suspect the prop people found a copy of the Bosnia stamp on the internet and printed a copy, then cut it out with something like pinking shears to give the perforation effect, and pasted it to the envelope.

They seem to have wanted a realistic look - maybe a collector WAS involved.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 07:08
by gavin-h
On0r74 wrote:Image

This may sound odd, but after all this work, I almost feel like I've completed some kind of quest or something. Considering how many BAJILLION stamps there are in the world, I may go out searching for the Ark of the Covenant next.
BRILLIANT job, On0r74 :!:

A great piece of research, and a great example of the "community" spirit of Stampboards. 8)

I'm nominating this for Thread of the Month :!:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 15:51
by fromdownunder
On0r74 wrote: Anyway, big thanks again for everyone's help; now maybe I can start enjoying OTHER stamps again... :wink:
Naahhhh! :D :D :D . Not done with you or this subject yet (Which BTW has been nominated for the post of the Month for, to me, obvious reasons).

I tried Googling various combinations to establish if in fact the USA has ever had any of it's Armed Forces in Bosnia and Herzegovona, and could not come up with a list which made it easy to find.

There was UN Forces in B&H and I assume that it may have consisted in part of USA Soldiers, and after all, the letters sent to (the great) Tommy Lee Jones were sent from a soldier whom he had personally trained, so we are in phase 2:

Is the letter legitimate. You could finish up writing a book..... :D
Was there ever a specific USA Force in B&H?
Could that stamp have been available at the time of the period in which the movie was set? (If so, then the Producer of the movie certainly did some homework)

Note that the Movie was made in 2003, and I cannot recall any specific reference as to what year the letter was supposed to have been sent.

Norm

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 15:53
by OttawaMike
As I recall, the U.S. involvement in that war was strictly in the air?

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 16:17
by aethelwulf
fromdownunder wrote:I tried Googling various combinations to establish if in fact the USA has ever had any of it's Armed Forces in Bosnia and Herzegovona, and could not come up with a list which made it easy to find.

There was UN Forces in B&H and I assume that it may have consisted in part of USA Soldiers, and after all, the letters sent to (the great) Tommy Lee Jones were sent from a soldier whom he had personally trained, so we are in phase 2
http://www.heritage.org/Research/Reports/2004/10/Global-US-Troop-Deployment-1950-2003
The end of the Cold War also led to U.S. personnel reductions of 50 percent or more in countries such as Portugal, Iceland, Greece, and the Netherlands. The major exception was the deployment of 15,003 soldiers to Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1996 and the steady presence of 3,000 troops there ever since.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 16:19
by aethelwulf
OttawaMike wrote:As I recall, the U.S. involvement in that war was strictly in the air?
US involvement in Serbia might have been limited to aerial bombardment as part of NATO to oust Milosovic. After they hit the Chinese Embassy, the matter of US involvement in that region was really "up in the air". :roll:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 09 Jul 2010 16:36
by fromdownunder
aethelwulf wrote:http://www.heritage.org/Research/Reports/2004/10/Global-US-Troop-Deployment-1950-2003
The end of the Cold War also led to U.S. personnel reductions of 50 percent or more in countries such as Portugal, Iceland, Greece, and the Netherlands. The major exception was the deployment of 15,003 soldiers to Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1996 and the steady presence of 3,000 troops there ever since.
And the stamp was issued in 1996, so the letter could be (fictionally) legitimate. Much congratulations to the Producer of a movie who actually tried to get something right, IF the denomination was the correct postage rate to the USA (or was it to Canada?. :D

Norm

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 10 Jul 2010 01:13
by brcStamps
It was addressed to Selkirk Station, a fictional place in British Columbia, Canada. Hovever, the postal code V6B 5G6 would place it somewhere in downtown Vancouver.

The next part of the detective work would be to find postal rates of war torn Bosnia of the time period.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 10 Jul 2010 01:21
by aethelwulf
brcStamps wrote:It was addressed to Selkirk Station, a fictional place in British Columbia, Canada. Hovever, the postal code V6B 5G6 would place it somewhere in downtown Vancouver.
The fact its so dirty and beat-up could therefore be either the fact it was coming from war-torn Bosnia, or it was delivered to Vancouver's Downtown East Side. :!:

(For non-Canadians, the neighbourhood is known nationwide for its poverty, crime, drugs...)

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 10 Jul 2010 01:35
by Global Admin
On0r74 wrote:
Anyway, to make a long story short, I was able to get a 1080p-quality screen-capture from the end piece of the movie:

Image
Great work with the ID. :mrgreen:

As someone above posted this is a print out from the web, cut out with pinking shears.

Image link inactive. Removed

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 10 Jul 2010 06:01
by On0r74
brcStamps wrote:
Nice job! I wonder why the perfs on the envelope are so large?
I suspect the prop people found a copy of the Bosnia stamp on the internet and printed a copy, then cut it out with something like pinking shears to give the perforation effect, and pasted it to the envelope.

They seem to have wanted a realistic look - maybe a collector WAS involved.
Can't believe I didn't notice that about the perforations. I think I was concentrating so hard on the picture that I didn't really notice anything else.
fromdownunder wrote:Was there ever a specific USA Force in B&H?
Could that stamp have been available at the time of the period in which the movie was set? (If so, then the Producer of the movie certainly did some homework)

Note that the Movie was made in 2003, and I cannot recall any specific reference as to what year the letter was supposed to have been sent.

Norm
Since aethelwulf found evidence of US troop deployment in Bosnia/Herzegovina during the timeframe when the letter/stamp would have been sent, that indicates the Producers at least made an attempt to be consistent with the details...

BUT even if there hadn't been US troops in Bosnia that year, since "Hallam" (the soldier/letter writer) was a member of an elite "Black Ops" team, I guess the screenwriters could have gotten away with saying Hallam & his team-members were covertly there, & the only US force present. *shrugs*

The movie opens (with a flashback) during just such an operation in Kosovo (the date is 1999), where a paramilitary force is slaughtering all of the civilians in a local village. The US team is apparently there for the sole purpose of assassinating the commander of the paramilitary group (which is accomplished rather savagely by Hallam himself). No other US troops are shown.

The main portion of the film is supposed to take place in 2003, although near the beginning (AFTER they have already established the year is 2003), another character produces a letter authorizing him to take custody of Hallam (after having been arrested by the police), & the date on the letter is March of 2001. So there is some discontinuity in the film.

In the [On-Topic] letter to Bonham (Tommy Lee Jones), Hallam states that he omitted many details (such as the date) to avoid leaking any sensitive information; so the only clue we have as to the dates would be the years in which the stamps were released.
aethelwulf wrote:The fact its so dirty and beat-up could therefore be ... the fact it was coming from war-torn Bosnia...
^THAT^ would have been my assumption, given the details of the storyline.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 14 Jul 2010 11:18
by On0r74
And look what showed up in the mail for me today:

Image

:mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 14 Jul 2010 11:30
by Allanswood
I hope you realise that if you put all this together and gather the rest of the stamps it would make a cracking 16 page exhibit item! :shock: :D

Why not have a go and completing your story and then enter an exhibition and post up the photos here! :mrgreen: :D

"Sherlock and the Internet - The case of the of the movie prop stamp"!

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 07 Aug 2010 15:49
by fromdownunder
On0r74, congratulations on winning the Post of the Month award for this thread. Very much deserved IMHO. You get a nice Year Book of Australian stamps for your research. Well done.

http://www.stampboards.com/viewtopic.php?f=13&t=8100&start=550" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Norm

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 11 Aug 2010 16:13
by Raz
What is the stamp in the background? Someone said it looked like a citadel ,
perhaps in a desert?

Is it a British issue, looks familiar. Not Carrickfergus, etc etc.

Re: Trying to identify a stamp from movie screen captures

Posted: 11 Aug 2010 19:38
by norvic
Raz wrote:What is the stamp in the background? Someone said it looked like a citadel ,
perhaps in a desert?

Is it a British issue, looks familiar. Not Carrickfergus, etc etc.
Looks like something from the Croatia definitive series 1990s.