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The Wicker Man / screen print / regular / Richard Wells / UK

04.01.16

Poster Poster

The Wicker Man is a true British classic and even though it started life as a low-budget b-feature the film has lost none of its power since its release forty years ago this year. Based on a script by celebrated screenwriter Anthony Shaffer, who had previously seen great success with the play Sleuth (1970), The Wicker Man was helmed by first time director Robin Hardy and was filmed on location around Scotland, with several coastal settings chosen to stand-in for the fictional island of Summerisle. It’s unfair to call the film a horror as it’s a mix of murder-mystery with occult undertones and features an unforgettable finale that lingers in the mind for a long time after the credits roll.

Edward Woodward stars as Sergeant Howie, a strait-laced policeman sent from the Scottish mainland to to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a local girl. After encountering indifference and hostility from the inhabitants, Howie decides to investigate the islands’ de facto leader Lord Summerisle (A memorable Christopher Lee) and soon discovers that this charismatic figure’s influence and beliefs hold sway over the population. The policeman realises too late that he has been brought to the island for reasons more sinister than the supposed disappearance of a local girl, and things are about to get very heated indeed for the unlucky Sergeant Howie.

This screen print was created by the British designer and illustrator Richard Wells (AKA Slippery Jack) in a traditional woodcut style that perfectly suits the film. Wells first debuted the artwork digitally in 2013 to mark the film’s 40th anniversary and then the following year he collaborated with Under the Floorboards to release a screen print of it in both regular and variant editions (the variant is on a different, brighter type of paper). There are so many great details to the print and I spot new ones each time I look at it. In 2013 Wells worked on a similar style print for Ben Wheatley’s A Field in England that was originally only given to cast and crew members but was later made available to the public in early 2015.

Check out Richard Wells’ portfolio site here and his DeviantArt gallery here.

The Sword And The Sorcerer / one sheet / style A / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Sword And The Sorcerer
AKA
La spada a tre lame [The sword of three blades] (Italy)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Albert Pyun
Starring
Lee Horsley, Shelley Taylor Morgan, Kathleen Beller, Simon MacCorkindale, George Maharis, Richard Lynch, Richard Moll, Anthony De Longis, Robert Tessier, Nina Van Pallandt, Anna Bjorn, Jeff Corey, Joe Regalbuto, Christina Nigra, Earl Maynard, Russ Marin
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Lee Horsley, Shelley Taylor Morgan, Kathleen Beller, Simon MacCorkindale, George Maharis, Richard Lynch, Richard Moll, Anthony De Longis, Robert Tessier, Nina Van Pallandt, Anna Bjorn, Jeff Corey, Joe Regalbuto, Christina Nigra, Earl Maynard, Russ Marin,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style A
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Peter Andrew Jones
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
A lusty epic of revenge and magic, dungeons and dragons, wizards and witches, damsels and desire, and a warrior caught between.

The Sword and the Sorcerer is a 1982 fantasy film directed by Albert Pyun (in his debut) and was one of several entries in the genre that were released the same year, including Conan the Barbarian and The Beastmaster. Lee Horsley appears in his first film role as Prince Talon the song of a King and Queen who are slain by the evil King Cromwell (Richard Lynch) after he uses the black magic of a sorcerer named Xusia (Richard Moll) to overthrow their kingdom.

Over a decade later, Talon returns to the kingdom as a mercenary leading a band of men on a mission to help rebels overthrow Cromwell. Talon is asked to help free Mikah (Simon MacCorkindale), Cromwell’s war chancellor, who is secretly a double agent and is captured and imprisoned. His sister Alana (Kathleen Beller) begs for help from Talon and the mercenary sets out to Cromwell’s castle where the final showdown with his parents’ murderer takes place.

The film was critically derided at the time but still proved a popular box-office draw, easily recouping its relatively low budget and ending up as the most profitable independent film of 1982.

The artwork on this style A one sheet features the signature PAJ and this belongs to Peter Andrew Jones, a British artist who was born in North London in 1951 and studied at Central St. Martins art school. After graduating in 1974 he began working on book covers for the likes of Philip K. Dick, Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov. He also painted artwork for the Fighting Fantasy series of books by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone, including the cover of the first one published in 1982, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain.

Andrews created covers for video games published by the likes of US Gold and Psygnosis and also worked on magazine covers for Games Workshop that led to him to work on game art for several releases for the company. He only worked on a handful of film posters, which included one for Alligator II and the two one sheets for The Sword and the Sorcerer (style A and style B). These posters were adapted by the artist Brian Bysouth for the UK quad. Andrews continues to paint to this day from his home studio in Shropshire. His official site contains plenty of galleries of his work and links to buy books, prints and more.

Withnail and I / one sheet / USA

14.01.13

Poster Poster
Title
Withnail and I
AKA
Shakespeare a colazione [Shakespeare at breakfast] (Italy)
Year of Film
1986
Director
Bruce Robinson
Starring
Paul McGann, Richard E. Grant, Richard Griffiths, Ralph Brown, Michael Elphick, Daragh O'Malley, Michael Wardle, Una Brandon-Jones
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Paul McGann, Richard E. Grant, Richard Griffiths, Ralph Brown, Michael Elphick, Daragh O'Malley, Michael Wardle, Una Brandon-Jones,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1987
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Ralph Steadman
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Bruce Robinson’s Withnail & I is my favourite British film and one of the best black comedies ever made. Based on the director’s own experiences of living in North London as an unemployed actor, the film stars Richard E. Grant in his debut film role as the titular Withnail and Paul McGann as ‘I’/Marwood. Tired of the mess in their squalid apartment and sick of the lack of job prospects, the pair decide to take advantage of the fact that Withnail’s eccentric uncle Monty (Richard Griffiths) has a cottage in the Lake District, and they plan a relaxing break in the country. After driving up North in Marwood’s battered Jaguar the pair find their time in the cottage is significantly less idyllic than they’d hoped, and the film follows their escapades as they  have to deal with inclement weather, a lack of supplies and a bunch of oddball locals. To make matters worse Monty arrives unannounced and takes a keen interest in Marwood.

The artwork on this American one sheet is by the famed British cartoonist and illustrator Ralph Steadman who is perhaps best known for his long-term collaboration with the late American author and journalist Hunter S. Thompson. Born in 1936, Steadman is a noted political cartoonist and has painted book covers for writers such as Ted Hughes and George Orwell, as well as editorial work for papers like The Independent. Steadman’s work with Thompson saw him accompanying the journalist on several field trips, which saw the birth of the famed Gonzo style of journalism. He illustrated the covers for both Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72 and the classic Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, which saw the creation of the stylised character of Thompson depicted with bucket hats, aviator glasses and a cigarette holder. The artist’s official website features a great biography and plenty of galleries of his work.

Steadman has illustrated several film posters, including Terry Gilliam’s brilliant adaptation of Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas and the film based on Thompson’s life Where the Buffalo Roam, as well as the recent documentary Gonzo. In addition to this one sheet, the artwork seen here was used on the superb British quad for the film.

The Sword And The Sorcerer / one sheet / style B / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Sword And The Sorcerer
AKA
La spada a tre lame [The sword of three blades] (Italy)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Albert Pyun
Starring
Lee Horsley, Shelley Taylor Morgan, Kathleen Beller, Simon MacCorkindale, George Maharis, Richard Lynch, Richard Moll, Anthony De Longis, Robert Tessier, Nina Van Pallandt, Anna Bjorn, Jeff Corey, Joe Regalbuto, Christina Nigra, Earl Maynard, Russ Marin
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Lee Horsley, Shelley Taylor Morgan, Kathleen Beller, Simon MacCorkindale, George Maharis, Richard Lynch, Richard Moll, Anthony De Longis, Robert Tessier, Nina Van Pallandt, Anna Bjorn, Jeff Corey, Joe Regalbuto, Christina Nigra, Earl Maynard, Russ Marin,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style B
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Peter Andrews
Size (inches)
27 1/8" x 41 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
A lusty epic of revenge and magic, dungeons and dragons, wizards and witches, damsels and desire, and a warrior caught between.

The Sword and the Sorcerer is a 1982 fantasy film directed by Albert Pyun (in his debut) and was one of several entries in the genre that were released the same year, including Conan the Barbarian and The Beastmaster. Lee Horsley appears in his first film role as Prince Talon the song of a King and Queen who are slain by the evil King Cromwell (Richard Lynch) after he uses the black magic of a sorcerer named Xusia (Richard Moll) to overthrow their kingdom.

Over a decade later, Talon returns to the kingdom as a mercenary leading a band of men on a mission to help rebels overthrow Cromwell. Talon is asked to help free Mikah (Simon MacCorkindale), Cromwell’s war chancellor, who is secretly a double agent and is captured and imprisoned. His sister Alana (Kathleen Beller) begs for help from Talon and the mercenary sets out to Cromwell’s castle where the final showdown with his parents’ murderer takes place.

The film was critically derided at the time but still proved a popular box-office draw, easily recouping its relatively low budget and ending up as the most profitable independent film of 1982.

The artwork on this style B one sheet features the signature Peter Andrew, which has actually been cut short as it belongs to Peter Andrew Jones, a British artist who was born in North London in 1951 and studied at Central St. Martins art school. After graduating in 1974 he began working on book covers for the likes of Philip K. Dick, Arthur C. Clarke and Isaac Asimov. He also painted artwork for the Fighting Fantasy series of books by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone, including the cover of the first one published in 1982, The Warlock of Firetop Mountain.

Andrews created covers for video games published by the likes of US Gold and Psygnosis and also worked on magazine covers for Games Workshop that led to him to work on game art for several releases for the company. He only worked on a handful of film posters, which included one for Alligator II and the two one sheets for The Sword and the Sorcerer (style A and style B). These posters were adapted by the artist Brian Bysouth for the UK quad. Andrews continues to paint to this day from his home studio in Shropshire. His official site contains plenty of galleries of his work and links to buy books, prints and more.

 

The Thing / ‘Det er en Slags Ting’ / regular / Mark Englert / USA

13.03.17

Poster Poster

John Carpenter’s The Thing, one of my favourite films, has inspired many artists over the years and this screen print by the American artist Mark Englert was created in 2012. Englert, whose official website is here, has worked on a number of landscape format prints (typically 12″ x 36″) featuring scenes from cult films and TV shows. This print for the The Thing was the artist’s first and was created in response to two other prints in a similar style that were done by artist’s Englert admired. As detailed in this ExpressoBeans thread, he owned Dan McCarthy’s Hoth and JC Richard’s Fortress of Solitude prints, which both feature icy landscapes, and was inspired to create a third image to go with them. He chose The Thing and started to mock up ideas that he began posting in the thread. Over time it evolved into something he was happy with and he decided to have it printed.

Englert made it available for sale on his own site as a timed-edition and the final number sold was 232. There was also a variant version nicknamed ‘yeah, fuck you, too’ which featured a glow-in-the-dark ink layer of the giant creature seen at the end of the film. For more details and images of the elements check out this page on Posterocalpyse. On there he talks about his process:

“It’s my first print, but I’ve been making a living doing illustration for over 12 years now, so I was fairly confident I could pull it off. I work in Photoshop, took pictures of some local mountains after a recent snow storm and drew the rest myself, piece by piece. I drew the dog, base and helicopter at a much larger size then they would be printed in the end, so that when I shrunk them down, they would have a comparable level of detail as the picture of mountains they were placed in front of. The movie is a long-time favorite… lots of note-perfect, iconic moments that are carved into my brain and just re-watchable as hell.”

One of his most popular early prints was for The Walking Dead that was released around the same time as an Alien print. Each print is given a name that relates to the property in some way. In this case ‘Det er en Slags Ting’ is spoken by one of the survivors from the ill-fated Norwegian outpost.

Check out this interview with Englert on Collider.com which was carried out at the 2012 Comic Con and they also featured him in their first ever ‘Limited Paper’ column. Englert’s own site features the posters and other items he’s worked on so far, which includes vinyl sleeves and more. There’s a short biography on his website which mentions he was born in 1979. There’s an excellent interview with Mark on 411posters.com here.

He has a store here and you can follow him on Twitter here.

Silver Streak / one sheet / style A / USA

31.05.16

Poster Poster
Title
Silver Streak
AKA
--
Year of Film
1976
Director
Arthur Hiller
Starring
Gene Wilder, Jill Clayburgh, Richard Pryor, Patrick McGoohan, Ned Beatty, Clifton James, Ray Walston, Stefan Gierasch, Len Birman, Valerie Curtin, Lucille Benson, Scatman Crothers, Richard Kiel, Fred Willard
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Gene Wilder, Jill Clayburgh, Richard Pryor, Patrick McGoohan, Ned Beatty, Clifton James, Ray Walston, Stefan Gierasch, Len Birman, Valerie Curtin, Lucille Benson, Scatman Crothers, Richard Kiel, Fred Willard,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style A
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1976
Designer
Unknown
Artist
George Gross
Size (inches)
27 2/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
76/200
Tagline
By plane, by train, by the edge of your seat, it's the most hilarious suspense ride of your life!

Silver Streak, a 1976 comedy thriller, marked the first time that the celebrated comic actors Gene Wilder and Richard Pryor would appear together in a film and there would be a further three pairings following this one. Directed by Arthur Hiller, who would helm See No Evil, Hear No Evil starring Wilder and Pryor 13 years later, the film is mostly set onboard the eponymous long distance train. Wilder plays George Caldwell a book editor who is traveling from Los Angeles to Chicago for his sister’s wedding. Whilst onboard he meets Hilly (Jill Clayburgh) and the pair strike up a romance, but soon George is battling to stay alive after he witnesses the murder of an art historian and attracts the attention of the killers.

The gang plan to impersonate the dead historian in order to pass of a pair of forged Rembrandt paintings as original. George is forcefully removed from the train several times and it’s during one of these escapades that he meets the criminal Grover T. Muldoon (Pryor) who he enlists in helping him reach the train to climb back onboard and bring the conspiracy to light. As this poster artwork suggests, the film ends in a spectacular train crash.

The artwork is by George Gross, an American who is best known as an artist of pulp book covers but, as this short biography details, he also worked on magazine illustrations and covers for popular novels. The artist was born in 1909 in Brooklyn and he followed his father into the area of commercial illustration, with both of his siblings eventually making it a proper family affair. This site has a gallery of his pulp covers. I’ve been unable to determine if he painted any other film posters so please get in touch if you know of any others.

It’s worth noting that the central figures have been rather crudely cut out and placed over the background scenes, which have also been cut up in places (see if you can spot the replicated policeman).

Juggernaut / 30×40 / USA

19.11.12

Poster Poster
Title
Juggernaut
AKA
Terror on the Britannic (UK - DVD title / USA)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Richard Lester
Starring
Richard Harris, Omar Sharif, David Hemmings, Anthony Hopkins, Shirley Knight, Ian Holm, Clifton James
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Richard Harris, Omar Sharif, David Hemmings, Anthony Hopkins, Shirley Knight, Ian Holm, Clifton James,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert McCall
Size (inches)
29 14/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
74/273
Tagline
The greatest sea adventure in history has just begun!

Juggernaut was directed by Richard Lester, perhaps best known for his work with The Beatles on two of their early films (A Hard Days Night and Help!), and features an all-star cast in the style of other 1970s disaster movies such as Earthquake and The Towering Inferno (both released in the same year). The story sees a luxury cruise-liner targeted by the titular terrorist who has covertly planted barrels of high-explosive onboard and is making his ransom demands from a secret location on the mainland. Omar Sharif plays the captain of the ship who, along with the ship’s entertainer Roy Kinnear, attempt to keep the hundreds of passengers calm as a bomb squad led by Commander Fallon (Richard Harris) parachutes in to try and defuse the devices. Back on dry land Anthony Hopkins‘ police superintendent, whose wife and children are onboard the ship, leads the hunt for Juggernaut before the time runs out.

The production hired an actual cruise ship, the SS Hamburg, which had recently been sold by its German owners to the Soviet Union and renamed the SS Maxim Gorkiy. The livery on the side of the ship was temporarily painted over and the ship renamed as the Britannica. Hundreds of extras were then hired with the promise of a cruise around the North Sea, although they were warned that the ship was likely to head into high seas to increase the drama of the film’s external shots!

The artwork on this 30×40 is by the late American artist Robert McCall who is perhaps best known for his work as a conceptual artist for the likes of NASA and several Hollywood productions, including Tora, Tora, Tora and Star Trek. Born in 1919 in Columbus, Ohio McCall graduated from the city’s School of Fine Arts before heading off to join the Airforce at the outbreak of World War II. Upon his return from service McCall carved out a successful career as a cover artist for publications such as Life Magazine, and before long he was painting for the U.S. Air Force. Around this time the artist also began a successful cooperation with NASA, which lasted for decades and saw him painting giant murals in buildings such as the National Air and Space Museum. In the 1960s McCall also began working with the entertainment industry as a concept artist. He sadly passed away, aged 90, in 2010.

Arguably his most famous film poster work is the set of illustrations he painted for Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey. Some of his NASA paintings can be seen on this website and many of his other sci-fi artworks can be viewed via this Tumblr link.

Superman II / Thailand

07.11.16

Poster Poster
Title
Superman II
AKA
--
Year of Film
1980
Director
Richard Lester | Richard Donner
Origin of Film
USA | UK
Genre(s) of Film
Richard Harris, Omar Sharif, David Hemmings, Anthony Hopkins, Shirley Knight, Ian Holm, Clifton James,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
1980
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Tongdee Panumas
Size (inches)
21 7/16" x 31"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the original Thai poster for the release of Superman II, the sequel to 1978’s Superman the Movie. The artwork is partially based on the international one sheet painted by the American artist Dan Goozee (see here). Goozee’s artwork also appeared on the Japanese B2 poster. My belief is that the Thai artist, Tongdee Panumas, repainted the original artwork and then added new items to the montage.

Superman II is infamous for its troubled production which saw original director Richard Donner replaced part way through filming. The producers of the first film had decided to shoot the sequel at the same time. Donner had filmed multiple scenes, including those featuring Marlon Brando, but at a certain point a decision was made to pause filming the sequel to get the first film out of the door. Once Superman the Movie was released into cinemas, the production team returned to finish off the sequel. In the interim period, the producers had been sued by Brando for a slice of the first film’s profits so his filmed scenes were excised from the sequel.

Richard Lester, who was originally brought on as an uncredited line producer on the first film, was chosen to replace Donner. The latter had fallen out with the producer Pierre Spengler whilst filming the first movie and soon discovered that he wasn’t to be invited back to complete the sequel. Lester ended up refilming many of the scenes that Donner had completed but quite a lot of the latter’s work survived in the final cut, including scenes with Gene Hackman who was unable to return for the reshoots. Composer John Williams also had a scheduling conflict but he recommended Ken Thorne, a friend and fellow composer, to the production team.

The fairly simple storyline sees the villains teased at the start of the first film, Kryptonians General Zod (a memorable performance by Terence Stamp) and his two accomplices, escape from the Phantom Zone and descend to earth. There they cause havoc and eventually break into the White House, holding the president hostage. Meanwhile, Clark Kent and Lois Lane are on holiday cementing their romantic relationship. Lois has become convinced that her boyfriend is in fact Superman in disguise. Lex Luthor has also managed to escape from prison and agrees a tentative deal with the Zod that he will help them find Superman in exchange for him being given Australia to rule. The stage is set for a showdown between the four Kryptonians at the Fortress of Solitude.

Despite the behind the scenes woes, the film is actually a very strong sequel and was critically acclaimed on release. The box-office receipts were also very healthy and led to an inevitable sequel 3 years later (it was even teased at the start of the credits for part II).

Tongdee’s artwork features several key scenes from the film and I particularly love the floating Superman head in the bottom right. Note that there’s a Trebor advert on the left side and this is common for Thai posters of the era. I believe that companies paid to have their brand associated with a film’s release (as is common practice today) and these logos would often make it onto the poster. Pepsi is one brand logo that often appears on Thai posters.

Tongdee was an incredibly prolific film poster artist during the 70s, 80s and 90s. I’ve been unable to find out much about him, other than that he was born in 1947, so if anyone has any more details please get in touch.

The Sword and the Sorcerer / quad / UK

30.01.15

Poster Poster

The Sword and the Sorcerer is a 1982 fantasy film directed by Albert Pyun (in his debut) and was one of several entries in the genre that were released the same year, including Conan the Barbarian and The Beastmaster. Lee Horsley appears in his first film role as Prince Talon the song of a King and Queen who are slain by the evil King Cromwell (Richard Lynch) after he uses the black magic of a sorcerer named Xusia (Richard Moll) to overthrow their kingdom.

Over a decade later, Talon returns to the kingdom as a mercenary leading a band of men on a mission to help rebels overthrow Cromwell. Talon is asked to help free Mikah (Simon MacCorkindale), Cromwell’s war chancellor, who is secretly a double agent and is captured and imprisoned. His sister Alana (Kathleen Beller) begs for help from Talon and the mercenary sets out to Cromwell’s castle where the final showdown with his parents’ murderer takes place.

The film was critically derided at the time but still proved a popular box-office draw, easily recouping its relatively low budget and ending up as the most profitable independent film of 1982.

This quad was painted by the British designer and artist Brian Bysouth who I interviewed for this site in 2012, There is also a quad for Willow featuring the same artwork. Brian is one of my favourite artists and worked on multiple classic posters from the 1960s to the 1980s, including the final painted poster for a James Bond film, The Living Daylights. The other posters I’ve collected by Brian can be seen by clicking here.

This poster takes elements from both the Style A US one sheet as well as the Style B one sheet, both credited to the artist Peter Andrew Jones.

Superman III / one sheet / advance / USA

03.11.12

Poster Poster
Title
Superman III
AKA
Superman vs. Superman (USA - original script title)
Year of Film
1983
Director
Richard Lester
Starring
Christopher Reeve, Richard Pryor, Jackie Cooper, Marc McClure, Annette O'Toole, Annie Ross, Pamela Stephenson, Robert Vaughn, Margot Kidder
Origin of Film
UK | Canada | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Christopher Reeve, Richard Pryor, Jackie Cooper, Marc McClure, Annette O'Toole, Annie Ross, Pamela Stephenson, Robert Vaughn, Margot Kidder,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Advance
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1983
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Larry Salk
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 40 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
--

Richard Pryor was clearly seen as a major draw for audiences who were contemplating going to watch the third entry in the Christopher Reeve series of Superman films, and the artwork on this US advance one sheet was reused for the final design. In the end, the inclusion of the infamous comedian proved one of the films biggest flaws since most of his scenes involved slapstick comedy, and his character’s daft antics serve to almost completely eradicate any of the gravitas the previous films had manage to establish. Pryor had appeared in a string of successful comedies during the early 1980s, including Stir Crazy (1980), but his casting in this film apparently came about after he mentioned on a US talk show how much he’d like to appear in a Superman film.

Richard Lester, the director who had completed work on the troubled Superman II after Richard Donner had been fired, took on directing duties for the sequel. The story sees Pryor’s computer ‘genius’ Gus Gorman blackmailed into using his skills for wealthy megalomaniac Ross Webster (Robert Vaughn), whose various plans for world domination are foiled by Superman. After attempting to cripple the superhero with synthesised kryptonite, the plan goes awry when a key ingredient is missed and, rather than stopping him, the material causes Superman to turn into an evil incarnation of his former self. This ends in a battle between the righteous Clark Kent and the malicious Superman and after successfully defeating his alter-ego, the good Superman heads to Webster’s lair in the grand canyon where a giant supercomputer built by Gorman almost succeeds in defeating the hero.

The film features a sequence that terrified me when I watched it as a child, which sees the supercomputer turning self-aware and forcefully changing Webster’s sister into a bizarre cyborg creature.

The poster art is credited to an American artist called Larry Salk about whom I’ve been able to discover very little. A now defunct gallery site described him as a freelance illustrator who worked on around 165 film posters, as well as painting for advertisements, video game covers, record sleeves and more. IMPAwards features a few of his posters (I have his one sheet for the 3D re-release of House of Wax) and he was the artist who painted the famous portrait of Cosmo Kramer from Seinfeld. He apparently passed away in 2004.

The late artist John Berkey painted a scene from the finale on the international one sheet.

A Man Called Dagger / B2 / Japan

28.07.14

Poster Poster
Title
A Man Called Dagger
AKA
--
Year of Film
1967
Director
Richard Rush
Starring
Paul Mantee, Terry Moore, Jan Murray, Sue Ane Langdon, Eileen O'Neill, Maureen Arthur, Leonard Stone, Richard Kiel
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Paul Mantee, Terry Moore, Jan Murray, Sue Ane Langdon, Eileen O'Neill, Maureen Arthur, Leonard Stone, Richard Kiel,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1968
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
20 4/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

A relatively obscure spy thriller from 1967, A Man Called Dagger saw limited release around the globe and, as far as I can tell, this Japanese poster is one of the few examples of a theatrical release (I don’t believe the UK was treated to a cinema outing). Originally filmed in 1966, it fell victim to a collapse of relations between its original production company, Lew Horwitz’s Global Screen Associates (GSA), and distributors Cinema Distributors of America. It languished for almost a year before being picked up by MGM. The film is essentially a low-grade James Bond homage (the original title was ‘Why Spy?’) and it’s clear that the original producers wanted to cash in on the global popularity of Ian Fleming’s famous creation.

Richard Rush (most known for 1980’s The Stunt Man) was at the helm and Paul Mantee (a cult figure from his performance in Robinson Crusoe on Mars, 1964) plays the unfortunately monikered Dick Dagger (isn’t that a weapon from David Fincher’s Seven?), a crime-fighting spy who teams up with female agent Harper Davis (Terry Moore) in a bid to track down wheelchair bound Nazi war criminal Rudolph Koffman (Jan Murray). Koffman is holed up in a meat-packing plant and is using less than legal supplies in its production. With several damsels in distress, including Harper, Dagger must his ingenuity and gadgets, including a dodgy laser watch to save the day.

This B2 poster is a combination of the original US one sheet artwork (artist unknown) and a few photographic stills. If you have any idea who is responsible for the artwork please get in touch.

Check out the original trailer on YouTube.

Pale Rider / one sheet / international

21.05.11

Poster Poster

Pale Rider / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Moonraker / one sheet / advance / style A – ‘Summer’ / international

15.02.12

Poster Poster
Title
Moonraker
AKA
Agente 007, Moonraker: Operazione Spazio [Operation Space] (Italy)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Lewis Gilbert
Starring
Roger Moore, Lois Chiles, Michael Lonsdale, Richard Kiel, Corinne Clery, Bernard Lee, Geoffrey Keen, Desmond Llewelyn, Lois Maxwell, Toshirô Suga, Blanche Ravalec
Origin of Film
UK | France
Genre(s) of Film
Roger Moore, Lois Chiles, Michael Lonsdale, Richard Kiel, Corinne Clery, Bernard Lee, Geoffrey Keen, Desmond Llewelyn, Lois Maxwell, Toshirô Suga, Blanche Ravalec,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Advance - style A - 'Summer'
Origin of Poster
International
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Dan Goozee
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
Outer space now belongs to 007

Although considered by most Bond fans to be one of the weakest of the series, I know I’m not the only one to have a soft spot for Moonraker, Roger Moore‘s fifth outing as James Bond. Thanks to endless TV showings during the 1980s and early 1990s I’ve probably seen this more than any other in the series and, like Live and Let Die, it had a huge impression on my young mind.

Looking at it through the cynical fog of adulthood it’s easy to sneer at the camp script, supremely daft action sequences (motorised Gondola anyone?) and painfully obvious attempt to cash in on the success of Star Wars (a very common theme amongst films released in its wake). The film is probably the quintessential outing for Moore as Bond and only he could have pulled it off as well as he did, particularly when it comes to the hokey script and madcap action.

The film features several memorable sequences, including a stunning cable car fight over Rio de Janeiro, and a memorable bad guy in Richard Kiel‘s inimitable ‘Jaws’ who used to scare me senseless as a kid. Also notable is John Barry‘s soundtrack, which marked a departure from his previous Bond work by mainly using strings instead of the typical brass. The film also features one of the most (literally) eyebrow-raising character names in the form of Dr Holly Goodhead (Lois Chiles) and one of the best/worst sign-offs of the entire series:

Sir Frederick Gray, Minister of Defence:  My God, what’s Bond doing? 
Q: I think he’s attempting re-entry, sir.

This particular poster is the advance international one sheet with artwork by Dan Goozee who is responsible for several other Bond posters, including the US one sheet. Other posters I’ve collected by him can be seen here.

This version has the phrase ‘Blasting off in June!’ at the bottom, but I also have one which says ‘Blasting off This Summer’ – see the last photos for images of it. I know there is also at least one other alternative version that has the phrase ‘Blasting off Soon’ (image taken from emovieposter.com).

The original trailer for the film is on YouTube.

The Thing / quad / UK

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Les Edwards
Size (inches)
29 7/8" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
The ultimate in alien terror. | Man is The Warmest Place to Hide.

The Thing / Ex-Yugoslavia

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
Stvor (Ex-Yugoslavia)| John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Ex-Yugoslavia
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Ex-Yugoslavia
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
14 11/16" x 26 10/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Thing / A1 / Germany

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
Das Ding (Germany) | John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
23 5/16" x 33"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Thing / daybill / Australia

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Daybill
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Australia
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
13" x 30"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
The ultimate in alien terror. | Man is The Warmest Place to Hide.

The Thing / screen print / Tyler Stout / regular / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Screen print
Style of Poster
Regular
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2008
Designer
Tyler Stout
Artist
Tyler Stout
Size (inches)
24.5" x 36 3/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Thing / screen print / Tyler Stout / variant / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Thing
AKA
John Carpenter's The Thing (USA - complete title) | Stvor (Serbia)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David,Charles Hallahan, Donald Moffat, Richard Dysart, David Clennon, Richard Masur, T. K. Carter, Joel Polis, Thomas G. Waites, Peter Maloney,
Type of Poster
Screen print
Style of Poster
Variant
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2008
Designer
Tyler Stout
Artist
Tyler Stout
Size (inches)
24 7/16" x 36 3/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Heavy Metal / one sheet / style B / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Heavy Metal
AKA
--
Year of Film
1981
Director
Gerald Potterton
Starring
Harvey Atkin, Jackie Burroughs, John Candy, Eugene Levy, Marilyn Lightstone, Harold Ramis, Richard Romanus
Origin of Film
Canada
Genre(s) of Film
Harvey Atkin, Jackie Burroughs, John Candy, Eugene Levy, Marilyn Lightstone, Harold Ramis, Richard Romanus,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style B
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Richard Vance Corben
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
810091
Tagline
A Step Beyond Science Fiction

Being There / B1 / Japan

11.09.17

Poster Poster
Title
Being There
AKA
--
Year of Film
1979
Director
Hal Ashby
Starring
Peter Sellers, Shirley MacLaine, Melvyn Douglas, Jack Warden, Richard Dysart, Richard Basehart, Ruth Attaway, David Clennon
Origin of Film
USA | West Germany
Genre(s) of Film
Peter Sellers, Shirley MacLaine, Melvyn Douglas, Jack Warden, Richard Dysart, Richard Basehart, Ruth Attaway, David Clennon,
Type of Poster
B1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1980
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
28 12/16" x 40 9/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
a story of chance

This is the Japanese B1 poster for the release of Hal Ashby‘s 1979 comedy-drama Being There. The film is based on the novel of the same name by Jerzy Kosiński, who was also involved in the initial effort to craft the screenplay, with an uncredited Robert C. Jones. Being There was the penultimate film for the legendary British comedy actor Peter Sellers who would pass away only a year after its release at the untimely age of 54.

Sellers plays Chance, a simple-minded gardener who has lived and worked in the same Washington DC house since he was a young boy. He has never left the house, is unable to read or write and everything he has learnt has come from the TV set in his bedroom. When the owner of the house passes away, Chance is forced to wander the streets wearing the tailored suit of his old employer, unsure what to do next. An accidental encounter with the Eve Rand (Shirley MacLaine), the wife of the elderly billionaire business mogul Ben Rand (Melvyn Douglas), sees him transported in a limousine to the sprawling residence of the Rands. There he meets Ben who mistakenly assumes him to be Chauncey Gardener, a cultured and wise gentleman, who endears himself to the mogul. Rand mistakes his simple proclamations about gardening to be deep metaphors about the state of the economy. Chance even meets the President (Jack Warden), a friend of Rand’s, and influences a major speech he makes. Eventually people around Rand and the President begin to investigate Chauncey Gardener’s background, whilst Ben Rand’s health begins to fail and Eve becomes smitten with Chance.

The film was a critical success and was award-winning, with Sellers being given the Golden Globe for Best Actor (Musical or Comedy) and Melvyn Douglas snagging the Best Supporting Actor at the 1980 Academy Awards. The Rand’s home was the incredible Biltmore Estate in North Carolina.

The artwork on this Japanese B1 also featured on an international one sheet and the the German poster. I’m unsure who is responsible for the art so if anyone has any ideas please get in touch.

Shaft’s Big Score / B2 / Japan

25.07.11

Poster Poster
Title
Shaft's Big Score
AKA
--
Year of Film
1972
Director
Gordon Parks
Starring
Richard Roundtree, Moses Gunn, Drew Bundini Brown, Joseph Mascolo, Kathy Imrie, Wally Taylor, Julius Harris, Rosalind Miles, Joe Santos
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Richard Roundtree, Moses Gunn, Drew Bundini Brown, Joseph Mascolo, Kathy Imrie, Wally Taylor, Julius Harris, Rosalind Miles, Joe Santos,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1972
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 4/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Shaft’s Big Score is the second in a trilogy of films featuring blaxploitation hero Shaft (Richard Roundtree). This Japanese poster features a still from one of the big action sequences in the film. I’m a fan of the typography used for the title.

You can view the trailer on YouTube.

Orca / B2 / style B / Japan

13.10.14

Poster Poster
Title
Orca
AKA
Orca: Killer Whale (alt. title) | The Killer Whale (alt. title)
Year of Film
1977
Director
Michael Anderson
Starring
Richard Harris, Charlotte Rampling, Will Sampson, Bo Derek, Keenan Wynn, Robert Carradine, Scott Walker, Peter Hooten, Wayne Heffley
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Richard Harris, Charlotte Rampling, Will Sampson, Bo Derek, Keenan Wynn, Robert Carradine, Scott Walker, Peter Hooten, Wayne Heffley,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Style B
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1977
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
20 7/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

A man versus giant killer fish film that was released two years after the original summer blockbuster Jaws, Orca was always going to be compared to Spielberg’s classic even if its lead actor, the late Richard Harris, was apparently angered by the links; ‘I get really offended when people make the comparison’, he is quoted as saying at the time of release. The late Italian producer Dino De Laurentiis was determined to one-up the spectacle of Jaws and tasked the screenwriter Luciano Vincenzoni to “find a fish tougher and more terrible than the great white”, which led them to the killer whale and production on ‘Orca’ began.

Harris plays Nolan, the Irish captain of a fishing boat operating in the waters off the coast of northern Canada who hears of a lucrative contract being offered for the live capture of a killer whale and hopes the bounty will pay off the mortgage on his boat. After Nolan and his crew accidentally spear a pregnant female killer whale they drag it onto the ship where it miscarries, and almost dies, before the male (Orca) attacks the ship, killing one of the crew before the female is cut loose and falls into the water. The next morning the body of the female whale washes up on shore and before long it becomes clear that Orca is out for revenge, as he attacks the fishing village and destroys vital fuel lines. The villagers insist Nolan is responsible and task him with killing Orca so he sets off with the remainder of his crew, plus marine biologist Rachel Bedford (Charlotte Rampling) and a native American killer whale expert (Will Sampson). The whale leads the boat away from the village into frozen, iceberg covered waters and the stage is set for a final confrontation.

Unfortunately for De Laurentiis and all involved the film was critically derided and sank quickly at the box office, particularly since the juggernaut that was Star Wars was already smashing box office records around the world. The idea of a vengeful fish obviously didn’t go down too well with audiences, although the people behind 1987’s awful Jaws: The Revenge must have forgotten this by the time it was decided to make a third Jaws sequel. The practice of hunting and capturing killer whales to feed the demand from aquariums in the 1960s and 70s was sadly all too prevalent, as documented in the recent heartbreaking documentary Blackfish, which also points out that there are no documented cases of humans being killed by the whales in the wild.

The artwork on the American one sheet was painted by John Berkey who also worked on the poster for the De Laurentiis produced remake of King Kong a year earlier, and the Orca art was also used for the British quad. The Japanese marketing campaign, however, featured at least three B2-sized posters, including this one, that featured artwork apparently unique to the posters and only the B1 format used the Berkey painting. I’ve called this B2 style B and there’s also the style A. I’ve been unable to find out who is responsible for this artwork so if you have any ideas please get in touch.

Check out the bonkers original trailer on YouTube.