You Searched For: A1

The Call of Spring / A1 / Czechoslovakia

12.10.15

Poster Poster
Title
The Call of Spring
AKA
Svěcení jara (Czech title) | Return of Spring (UK
Year of Film
1978
Director
France Stiglic
Starring
Zvezdana Mlakar, Dare Ulaga, Radko Polic, Lojze Rozman, Zvone Agrez, Andrej Kurent, Angelca Hlebce, Zvone Hribar, Relja Basic
Origin of Film
Yugoslavia
Genre(s) of Film
Zvezdana Mlakar, Dare Ulaga, Radko Polic, Lojze Rozman, Zvone Agrez, Andrej Kurent, Angelca Hlebce, Zvone Hribar, Relja Basic,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Czechoslovakia
Year of Poster
1978
Designer
Jozef Dóka
Artist
Jozef Dóka
Size (inches)
23 2/16" x 32 9/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Wild artwork features on this Czechoslovakian A1 poster for the release of the 1978 Yugoslavian film The Call of Spring (AKA Return of Spring). I’ve been unable to find out much about the film other than it’s a drama that was directed by France Stiglic, a Slovenian with 22 films to his name who died in 1993. If anyone has any more information about the film please get in touch.

The art features the signature ‘Dóka’ which I believe belongs to the Slovakian artist Jozef Dóka ml. who was born in Sered in 1948. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava from 19701976 and, according to the website of the Ján Koniarek Gallery in Trnava, soon established himself as a major presence on the poster design scene. He began to exhibit outside Slovakia, first in Poland and Slovenia, then later in exhibitions all over the world. He actually founded Trnava’s Ján Koniarek gallery in 1976 and established it as a venue for poster exhibition shortly afterwards. In 1991 he established the internationally recognised Trnava Poster Triennial, which continues to run to this day. Dóka sadly passed away in 2011.

 

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial / A1 / Czechoslovakia

16.02.15

Poster Poster
Title
E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial
AKA
Night Skies (USA working title)
Year of Film
1982
Director
Steven Spielberg
Starring
Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Henry Thomas, Dee Wallace, Robert MacNaughton, Drew Barrymore, Peter Coyote,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Czechoslovakia
Year of Poster
1984
Designer
Zdenek Ziegler
Artist
Zdenek Ziegler
Size (inches)
22 7/16" x 32"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the original Czechoslovakian poster for the first release (in 1984) of Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi masterpiece, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. The story of a small alien who gets stranded on earth and meets a young boy called Elliot (Henry Thomas) touched the hearts of millions of movie-goers around the world. Within a year of its release it was crowned the highest-grossing film of all time, overtaking the previous leader, George Lucas’ Star Wars (this record has since been bested by over forty films in the intervening years). 2012 saw E.T. celebrate its 30th anniversary and having watched the blu-ray release recently there’s no question that it has stood the test of time well.

This poster is one of only a few from the worldwide marketing campaign to feature a full depiction of E.T. and this was likely okayed because it’s release in Czechoslovakia came two years after most other territories and revealing the alien would have been less of an issue.

This poster features a design by the celebrated Czech artist Zdenek Ziegler. Born in Prague in 1932, Ziegler studied at the Czech Technical University and graduated in 1961. He went on to design over 200 film posters during a 26-year period from 1963 to 1989. The website Terry Posters has a page with a biography of Ziegler and a gallery of his work (with some of them being available to purchase). Since 1990 Ziegler has been a teacher at Academy of Arts in Prague.

Some of his most celebrated designs include a 1970 poster for Hitchock’s Psycho and a great design for Truffaut’s Jules et Jim. I also have his poster for the re-release of Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in the West in the collection, as well as a great poster he designed for Ridley Scott’s Alien.

Once Upon A Time In The West / A1 / 1987 re-release / Czechoslovakia

15.09.12

Poster Poster

A striking design on this poster for the 1987 Czechoslovakian re-release of Sergio Leone’s masterpiece Once Upon a Time in the West. The epic 1968 Western stars Charles Bronson as the mysterious Harmonica who arrives in a frontier town and is memorably attacked by a group of trench coat-wearing assassins. Meanwhile, the family of Jill McBain (the gorgeous Claudia Cardinale), who has arrived in the town looking for a fresh start, is brutally slaughtered by unknown perpetrators. The prime suspect Cheyenne (Jason Robards) befriends the widow and joins forces with Harmonica to go after Frank (Henry Fonda in an atypical role), the ruthless gang leader protecting the interests of a railroad company.

This re-release poster features a design by the celebrated Czech artist Zdenek Ziegler. Born in Prague in 1932, Ziegler studied at the Czech Technical University and graduated in 1961. He went on to design over 200 film posters during a 26-year period from 1963 to 1989. The website Terry Posters has a page with a biography of Ziegler and a gallery of his work (with some of them being available to purchase). Since 1990 Ziegler has been a teacher at Academy of Arts in Prague.

Some of his most celebrated designs include a 1970 poster for Hitchock’s Psycho and a great design for Truffaut’s Jules et Jim. His take on the poster for Ridley Scott’s Alien is also very unique.

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
--

Der Superhammer / A1 / Germany

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Der Superhammer
AKA
Hu quan (original title) | Gold Snatchers (English Title)
Year of Film
1973
Director
Kim Lung
Starring
Chen Sing, Yasuaki Kurata, Lung Fei, Liu Ping, Chan, Wai-Lau, Gam Ming, Blacky Ko Sau-Leung, Jimmy Lung Fong, Wang Tai-Lang
Origin of Film
Hong Kong
Genre(s) of Film
Chen Sing, Yasuaki Kurata, Lung Fei, Liu Ping, Chan, Wai-Lau, Gam Ming, Blacky Ko Sau-Leung, Jimmy Lung Fong, Wang Tai-Lang,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
Unknown
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Lutz Peltzer
Size (inches)
23 6/16" x 33 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Terminator / A1 / Czechoslovakia

20.10.14

Poster Poster

James Cameron’s seminal sci-fi classic The Terminator celebrates its 30th anniversary this year and it cannot be overstated how much of an impact the film has had on cinema and culture in general. The careers of Cameron and star Arnold Schwarzenegger were given stratospheric boosts (not so much poor Michael Biehn) and the concepts of time-travel, and killer cyborgs will forever be tied to what would go on to become the Terminator franchise. The film is also arguably the original 80s action blockbuster and would be followed by a slew of increasingly more muscular, explosive flicks starring the likes of Sylvester Stallone, Bruce Wills and, of course, Arnie.

The US poster features an iconic photograph of Arnie alongside a lengthy tagline, whilst the UK quad went for an illustration depicting a battle-damaged Terminator showing the endoskeleton underneath. This poster for the Czechoslovakian release of the film in 1990 (two years before the sequel) features a fantastic illustration depicting the cold steel of the endoskeleton with Arnie’s face above and an exposed cranium with what are clearly intended to be electronic pulses in place of a human brain.

The poster was designed and printed by the Czech artist Milan Pecák. A celebrated designer and artist, Pecák was born in 1962 and studied at the Vaclav Hollar School of Fine Arts in Prague before working as an architect and later as a set designer for several films. It was whilst working on the 1986′ ‘Zastihla Me Noc’ that he was first given the opportunity to work on the film’s poster and from then onwards he was in demand as an artist for posters advertising Czech releases, as well as several American films, including Gorillas in the Mist, Mississippi Burning and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. In addition to film posters, Pecák is also an accomplished book and magazine cover illustrator and in his spare time works on fine art painting as well as digital graphics.

Milan Pecák’s official website can be viewed here and features several galleries of his work as well as a biography.

Wild At Heart / A1 / Czechoslovakia

06.02.15

Poster Poster

A suitably bizarre design features on this Czech poster for David Lynch’s 1990 twisted road trip Wild at Heart. Based on Barry Gifford’s 1989 novel of the same name, the film is arguably the most conventional film that Lynch has ever made, but it’s no less weird and wonderful than the rest of his output. Nicolas Cage turns in one of his career best performances as Sailor Ripley, a young man sent to jail for killing a knife-wielding attacker in North Carolina.

Upon his release, he is met by his girlfriend Lula Fortune (Laura Dern) at the prison gates and the pair decide to run away to California to escape her domineering mother Marietta (a memorable performance by Diane Ladd). Marietta is a twisted bully and totally disapproves of Sailor and Lula’s relationship. It’s revealed that she sent the knife-wielding killer after him to begin with and when they disappear she hires both a private detective and a dangerous mobster to track them down.

The lovers end up in Texas where they meet an old friend called Perdita Durango (Isabella Rossellini) who they hope will be able to help them, but also encounter the psychotic gangster Bobby Peru (a terrifying Willem Dafoe) who leads Sailor astray with terrible consequences. The film is full of Lynch’s trademark surreal sequences and shocking moments of violence, including one involving a shotgun that is hard to forget. Apparently the film tested badly upon completion and Lynch recalls that over 100 people walked out during one screening. It received a pretty mixed critical reception but it did win the coveted Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival and was a moderate financial success in the US and internationally.

This Czech poster was designed by Jan Weber about whom I’ve been able to discover very little, other than that he was active from the 1970s to the 1990s and mainly specialised in posters for Hollywood films being released in Czechoslovakia. The site Terry Posters has a gallery of many of his posters.

Ghostbusters / A1 / Czechoslovakia

14.11.14

Poster Poster
Title
Ghostbusters
AKA
--
Year of Film
1984
Director
Ivan Reitman
Starring
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver, Rick Moranis, Annie Potts, William Atherton, David Margulies
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis, Ernie Hudson, Sigourney Weaver, Rick Moranis, Annie Potts, William Atherton, David Margulies,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Czechoslovakia
Year of Poster
1988
Designer
Petr Poš
Artist
Petr Poš
Size (inches)
22 4/16" x 31 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Another film that is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Ghostbusters, like James Cameron’s 1984 sci-fi classic Terminator, has had a lasting cultural impact and recent announcements of a long-awaited sequel helped to reinforce how big its worldwide fan base is. Director Ivan Reitman helped comedian and actor Dan Aykroyd develop his original concept into the New York-set story of three nerdy parapsychologists – Dr. Peter Venkman (Bill Murray), Dr. Raymond Stantz (Aykroyd) and Dr. Egon Spengler (Harold Ramis) – setting up a ghost-hunting team to take care of pesky spooks around the city.

Demand for their services quickly escalates and they end up hiring a fourth member of the team (Ernie Hudson‘s Winston Zeddmore). Soon they are having to deal with a demonic spirit called Zuul, which infests the apartment of Dana Barrett (Sigourney Weaver) before possessing her, whilst nerdy accountant Louis Tully (Rick Moranis) is also possessed by ‘the keymaster’. They herald the arrival of the ancient, evil god Gozer the Gozerian who the Ghostbusters battle on top of an apartment complex before it morphs into the now-infamous form of the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, which begins attacking the city. The film was a massive critical and commercial success and ended up as the second-highest grossing film of 1984, behind Eddie Murphy’s Beverly Hills Cop. A less successful sequel followed 5 years later but two cartoons, comics and video games (plus plenty of merchandise) kept the franchise going for many years.

This wonderfully surreal image was painted by Petr Poš for the 1988 Czech release of the film. Poš was born in Prague in 1944 and studied at the city’s School of Applied Arts from 1958-62 and then the Academy of Applied Arts and the Studio of Animated Film for the following 6 years. In 1981 he went to Brussels to study at the Académie Royale des Beaux-Arts. Back in Prague he worked as an assistant at the Studio of Film and Television Graphics.

He’s responsible for several acclaimed animated films, including Až opadá listí z dubu (1991) and Lakomá Barka (1998). He also worked as a graphic artist and, according to the Czech film poster site Terry Posters, he completed 53 film posters over a 27 year period. This poster was given an honourable mention in the Best Czechoslovak Poster competition, 1988. Other films he created posters for include DARYL and Krzysztof Kieslowski ‘s A Short Film About Love

The Beyond / A1 / Germany

05.12.14

Poster Poster
Title
The Beyond
AKA
Die Geisterstadt der Zombies (Germany) | L'aldilà (Italy) | 7 Doors of Death (USA)
Year of Film
1981
Director
Lucio Fulci
Starring
Catriona MacColl, David Warbeck, Cinzia Monreale, Antoine Saint-John, Veronica Lazar, Anthony Flees, Giovanni De Nava, Al Cliver, Michele Mirabella, Gianpaolo Saccarola
Origin of Film
Italy
Genre(s) of Film
Catriona MacColl, David Warbeck, Cinzia Monreale, Antoine Saint-John, Veronica Lazar, Anthony Flees, Giovanni De Nava, Al Cliver, Michele Mirabella, Gianpaolo Saccarola,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Lutz Peltzer
Size (inches)
23.5" x 33 9/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Unique artwork features on this German A1 poster for the release of Lucio Fulci‘s classic horror The Beyond (1981). Nicknamed The Godfather of Gore, the late Italian director is responsible for several memorable entries in the horror genre and The Beyond is one of what are often considered to be the big four Fulci films (the others being Zombie Flesh Eaters, The House By the Cemetery and City of the Living Dead), which were all made within two years of each other. The director tried his hand at various genres, including westerns and comedies, but it was horror where he found the greatest success and for which he is best remembered.

The Beyond is the second film in the unofficial ‘Gates of Hell’ trilogy of Fulci films that began with 1980s City of the Living Dead and ended with The House By the Cemetery. British actress Catriona MacColl, star of the other two films, plays New Yorker Liza Merril who has inherited a run-down Louisiana hotel and decides to spend her savings on renovating the place. What she doesn’t realise is that it was built over one of ‘Seven Doors of Death’, which are direct pathways to hell, and when people involved in helping her repair the hotel begin to die horribly she is helped by a local doctor (David Warbeck) and a mysterious local blind woman called Emily (Cinzia Monreale). It soon becomes clear that the pathway is letting supernatural evil out and creating bloodthirsty zombies of the dead and Liza must fight for her very survival.

As with many of Fulci’s films, the story plays second fiddle to the striking visuals and gory set-pieces as the body count ramps up. It’s never less than memorable and is often cited by Fulci fans as their favourite of his films. The Beyond also features a great score by regular Fulci collaborator Fabio Frizzi. The film was butchered heavily for its original US release (as ‘7 Doors of Death’) and was missing most of the gore scenes and a different soundtrack. The UK release was originally heavily cut, despite being granted an ‘X’ certificate. It was finally passed fully uncut in 2001.

A reader of the site got in touch to confirm that the poster was painted by Lutz Peltzer, a prolific German artist who worked on over 800 posters during his career. The German site Archiv für Filmposter features a biography and plenty of images of his work. It details that he was born in 1925 in Mannheim and passed away in 2003.

Alien / A1 / Czechoslovakia

07.01.15

Poster Poster
Title
Alien
AKA
Star Beast (USA - working title) | Alien - Den 8. passager (Denmark)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Ridley Scott
Starring
Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Yaphet Kotto
Origin of Film
USA | UK
Genre(s) of Film
Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Yaphet Kotto,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Czechoslovakia
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Zdenek Ziegler
Artist
Zdenek Ziegler
Size (inches)
22" x 32 4/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Ridley Scott’s seminal sci-fi horror Alien may have turned 35 last year but its impact on cinema and pop culture is still being felt today. The film featured a breakout performance by Sigourney Weaver as Ripley, a member of a deep space mining crew who respond to a distress signal on an unexplored planet and end up fighting for their lives when a malevolent alien creature is brought back onto their ship The Nostromo. Despite countless imitators over the years no one has yet managed to better the original and Scott himself even tried (and fell short IMO) with 2012’s (“definitely not a”) prequel Prometheus.

An excellent but markedly different sequel would follow with 1986s Aliens and I have a hard time choosing between the two when it comes to my personal favourite. Two other significantly less well-received sequels followed in the next 11 years but they did nothing to dampen enthusiasm for the original. British games developers The Creative Assembly were given full access to the 20th Century Fox archives for the film whilst they were creating Alien Isolation, a critically acclaimed first-person survival horror set 15 years after events in the original film and released in 2014.

This poster for the 1982 release in Czechoslovakia features a design by the celebrated Czech artist Zdenek Ziegler. Born in Prague in 1932, Ziegler studied at the Czech Technical University and graduated in 1961. He went on to design over 200 film posters during a 26-year period from 1963 to 1989. The website Terry Posters has a page with a biography of Ziegler and a gallery of his work (with some of them being available to purchase). Since 1990 Ziegler has been a teacher at Academy of Arts in Prague.

Some of his most celebrated designs include a 1970 poster for Hitchock’s Psycho and a great design for Truffaut’s Jules et Jim. I also have his poster for the re-release of Sergio Leone’s Once Upon a Time in the West in the collection.

Vozvrashchenie s orbity / A1 / Czechoslovakia

11.03.15

Poster Poster

This is the Czechoslovakian poster for the release of the obscure Soviet Union sci-fi film Vozvrashchenie s orbity. There’s barely any information about the film online other than this single review on the film’s IMDb page:

“Well,this film looks more like very deep and dramatic space drama. As soon as two friends-cosmonauts came back from space, a lot of things changed on the Earth. The wife of one of them died. And Kuznetsov can not go on flying to space. So he returns to navy aviation. Very soon a serious trouble happens to spacecraft and Kuznetsov flies to space to help his best friend, who was trapped in the closed sector of the craft. As soon as he managed to do that- new troubles start -the meteorite wind hits the craft and they have no ability to go back. They have only 12 hours. Then their teacher decides to help his students and saves their lives in space. Very serious and unusual look at the space explorations and true to life situations, not that sci fi. Far more like space necro realism. The score by master of Russian electronic music Edward Artemeyev is perfect, especially in the end of the film it becomes really symphonic dark space ambient. Very rare to find exclusive flick.”

The artwork on this Czech poster is by the late designer Zdeněk Vlach who was born in 1942 in Prague and studied at the School of Art there before working on film posters, commercial art and illustration. He won two awards for his film posters. The artist worked on over 200 posters from 1970 to 1989, which included designs for the likes of Excalibur (1984), Mona Lisa (1988) and Blue Velvet (1986). The website Terry Posters features an extensive gallery of his work. The artist sadly passed away in 1999 at the age of 58.

Duel / A1 / Germany

26.10.12

Poster Poster
Title
Duel
AKA
--
Year of Film
1971
Director
Steven Spielberg
Starring
Dennis Weaver, Jacqueline Scott, Eddie Firestone, Lou Frizzell, Eugene Dynarski, Lucille Benson, Tim Herbert
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Dennis Weaver, Jacqueline Scott, Eddie Firestone, Lou Frizzell, Eugene Dynarski, Lucille Benson, Tim Herbert,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1973
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
23 5/16" x 33"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Steven Spielberg‘s brilliant Duel was originally made for TV but was later expanded by 16 minutes and released in cinemas around the globe, making it technically the director’s second feature-length film. One of the best thrillers ever made, the story follows businessman David Mann (Dennis Weaver) who is traveling along a two-lane highway on the way to an important meeting. After getting stuck behind a series of slow moving vehicles he decides to overtake a rusty tanker truck and manages to enrage the driver, thus beginning an episode of road rage that escalates beyond Mann’s worst nightmares.

Brilliantly, the psychotic truck driver is never fully shown, thus making it seem like it’s the truck itself that’s in deadly pursuit of Mann. The film was based on a short story by the legendary sci-fi author and screenwriter Richard Matheson who has penned countless classic novels, short stories and screenplays, including the original ‘I Am Legend’, and one of the best Twilight Zone episodes ever, ‘Nightmare at 20,000 Feet‘ (a similar kind of ‘single man versus relentless evil’ story).

One of the original trucks used in the film survives to this day and is pictured here along with a similar Plymouth Valiant to the one driven by Mann in the film.

This is the stark German poster for the first release of the film there in 1973 and it features a mixture of artwork and manipulated photography. I’m unsure who’s responsible for the art so please get in touch if you have an idea.

The original trailer is on YouTube.

Ewoks: The Battle for Endor / A1 / Germany

27.03.15

Poster Poster

This is the German poster for the release of the second of two ill-advised TV movies featuring the Ewoks, the furry, love ’em or hate ’em characters from Return of the Jedi. The Battle for Endor is set some time after the first TV movie The Ewok Adventure (AKA The Caravan of Courage) and occurs between the events of The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. The plot is summarised thus:

The army of the Marauders, led by by King Terak and the witch Charal attack the Ewoks village. The parents and the brother of Cindel all die in this attack. Cindel and the Ewok Wicket escape and in a forrest they meet Teek a naughty and very fast animal. Teek takes them to a house in which a old man, Noa, lives. Like Cindel he also crashed with his Starcruiser on Endor. Together they fight Terak and Charal.

The film was first shown on TV in the US in 1985 and was given a theatrical run in UK cinemas but quickly disappeared from screens when audiences discovered the poor quality of the film. Despite not being embraced by most fans, the Ewok films nevertheless had elements that continued into the expanded Star Wars universe, including an animated series called Star Wars: Ewoks broadcast between 1985 and 1987 and the Star Tours rides at Disney theme parks.

The poster was designed and painted by one of my favourite artists, Renato Casaro, an Italian with a prolific movie poster output that lasted over 35 years. He began his career in 1953, aged 19, at the famous Studio Favalli in Rome and would go on to design and paint posters for many of the biggest directors in the world. His skill at accurately portraying actors and his brilliant use of colour and composition saw him much in demand from studios and actors alike. His artwork has featured on posters used in multiple countries, including Japan, Germany, USA as well as in his native Italy.

Check out the incredible amount of work on his official website here, which also features a biography of the artist. In March 2014 I published an exclusive interview with Renato and it can be read by clicking here. In it he mentions working on this poster and he showed me the original art for the version of the poster where it’s just Connery alone (the advance poster).

The other posters I’ve collected by Renato Casaro are here.

The Kid / A1 / 1960s re-release / Germany

01.09.15

Poster Poster
Title
The Kid
AKA
--
Year of Film
1921
Director
Charlie Chaplin
Starring
Charles Chaplin, Jackie Coogan, Edna Purviance, Carl Miller
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Charles Chaplin, Jackie Coogan, Edna Purviance, Carl Miller,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1960s (exact year unknown)
Designer
G. Kratzsch
Artist
--
Size (inches)
23 4/16" x 33 4/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is a German poster for a 1960s re-release of the great Charlie Chaplin‘s first full-length film as a director, The Kid. Written, produced, directed and starring the man himself, it was made during a period of difficulty for Chaplin who had apparently been suffering creative block for a number of months and was also going through a divorce from his first wife Mildred Harris, who had been a 16-year-old when Chaplin had met her. The pair were married a short while afterwards because Mildred apparently fell pregnant and Chaplin wanted to avoid any more scandal. The pregnancy then turned out to be a false alarm. Eventually Mildred did become pregnant and carried the child to full term, but sadly it was born malformed and died three days later. The marriage had been a rocky one throughout with Chaplin supposedly feeling that she ‘stunted his creativity’ and the child’s death was the final straw.

The whole situation clearly had an effect on Chaplin and influenced the writing of The Kid as a result. The film sees Chaplin’s character The Tramp find and adopt a baby after it is abandoned by its unwed mother (Edna Purviance) and winds up in alley near The Tramp’s bedsit. Cut to five years later and the child (played by Jackie Coogan, later best known as Uncle Fester in the Addams Family TV show) is in partnership with The Tramp in a venture in which the kid smashes house windows, runs away and then The Tramp conveniently appears with a pane of glass to carry out the repair. Eventually the authorities discover that the kid is not The Tramp’s own and try to take him away, which triggers a series of events that will change both of their lives forever. The Kid is one of Chaplin’s funniest and most heartfelt films and hasn’t lost any of its charms almost a century later. Chaplin edited the film in length in 1971, removing some scenes with the mother and also added a brilliant new score. This is the only version that’s readily available on home video today.

I’ve struggled to determine what year this poster is from and the only date on here is for the original 1921 copyright (in roman numerals). If anyone has any ideas please get in touch. I believe the design can be credited to a design studio in Berlin called G. Kratzsch, which may be the name of an individual. Again, if anyone knows any more details please get in touch.

Poppies Are Also Flowers / A1 / Germany

21.09.15

Poster Poster

Five great portraits painted by Renato Casaro feature on this German re-release poster for Poppies Are Also Flowers (AKA Danger Grows Wild and several other titles). Made as an anti-drug trafficking film with the help of the United Nations, it was sponsored by corporate entities, including Xerox.  As this poster attests, it was based on a screenplay by James Bond creator Ian Fleming, was directed by Bond director Terence Young and had a seriously star-studded cast. The likes of Yul BrynnerAngie DickinsonTrevor Howard and Marcello Mastroianni all signed up and, so the story goes, worked for $1 each. Some serious favours must have been called in as I find it hard to believe they were all passionately anti-narcotics!

The story is described thusly on the film’s Wikipedia page:

In an attempt to stem the heroin trade at the Afghanistan–Iran border, a group of narcotics agents working for the United Nations inject a radioactive compound into a seized shipment of opium, in the hopes that it will lead them to the main heroin distributor in Europe.

Now largely forgotten, the film is apparently in the public domain and is available to watch on YouTube and elsewhere (although the quality of all copies out there is atrocious). Although originally intended for TV, the film was given a cinema release in several countries, including Japan, UK (as Danger Grows Wild) and Germany. This poster is apparently for a 1973 re-release (for what reason I’m not certain) and the original German release poster can be seen here. Casaro was clearly tasked with making the film appear as exciting as possible and added the action scenes in the bottom half of the poster. It’s safe to say that for all the effort that went it to making the film it wasn’t exactly successful in curtailing the activities of the international drug trade!

One of my favourite artists, Renato Casaro is an Italian with a prolific movie poster output that lasted over 35 years. He began his career in 1953, aged 19, at the famous Studio Favalli in Rome and would go on to design and paint posters for many of the biggest directors in the world. His skill at accurately portraying actors and his brilliant use of colour and composition saw him much in demand from studios and actors alike. His artwork has featured on posters used in multiple countries, including Japan, Germany, USA as well as in his native Italy.

Check out the incredible amount of work on his official website here, which also features a biography of the artist. In March 2014 I published an exclusive interview with Renato and it can be read by clicking here. The other posters I’ve collected by Renato Casaro are here.

The Great Escape / A1 / 1975 re-release / Germany

30.11.15

Poster Poster

A striking design features on this German poster for the 1975 re-release of one of the greatest war films ever released, 1963’s The Great Escape. Director John Sturges (Magnificent Seven) helmed the film and it’s based on the 1950 non-fiction book of the same name, written by Paul Brickhill, which tells the story of a mass escape by allied prisoners from the high-security Stalag Luft III prison in Nazi Germany. Although partly fictionalised, many of the events depicted in the film did occur and the filmmakers only changed certain events and characters to add to the film’s commercial appeal.

An absolutely star-studded affair, the film features many of the finest male actors of the day, including Steve McQueenJames GarnerRichard Attenborough and Donald Pleasence. American actor Charles Bronson also appears as one of the prisoners and his popularity in Europe at the time of this 1975 re-release explains why he’s given equal billing on the poster alongside McQueen. Despite the roster of big names it will undoubtedly always be known as McQueen’s film since his turn as Virgil ‘The Cooler King’ Hilts, the cocky, determined Air Force captain, is really the centre of the film. It was McQueen’s image that was used to promote the film on various posters around the world. 

I’m unsure why the film was re-released in the then West Germany in 1975 and am also unsure who was responsible for the design and art on this A1 poster. If anyone has any ideas please get in touch.

The Fly / A1 / Hungary

13.01.16

Poster Poster
Title
The Fly
AKA
--
Year of Film
1986
Director
David Cronenberg
Starring
Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jeff Goldblum, Geena Davis, John Getz,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Hungary
Year of Poster
1986
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
22 2/16" x 32 2/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Unique artwork features on this poster for the Hungarian release of David Cronenberg‘s sci-fi classic, The Fly. Loosely based on a 1957 short story of the same name by George Langelaan, which was first adapted for the big screen in 1958, the screenplay was written by Cronenberg himself and based on an initial draft by Charles Edward Pogue. The director rewrote most of the characters and dialogue and added themes of identity, sexuality and body horror with which he’d become synonymous.

Cronenberg cast Jeff Goldblum as the gifted but eccentric scientist Seth Brundle who has secretly been working on teleportation of objects from one place to another instantly. He works for Bartok Science Industries but has been working on a pair of ‘telepods’ at his home laboratory. When he’s introduced to the journalist Veronica Quaife (Geena Davis) at a ‘meet the press’ event he decides to risk taking her to see his work, which he demonstrates by teleporting inanimate objects. Impressed, Veronica agrees to keep quiet in return for exclusive rights to the story.

Soon afterwards the pair start a romantic relationship as Brundle continues to work on the pods. He decides that he wants to have the pods teleport living tissue and eventually manages to do so successfully with a baboon he’s borrowed from his company. Flushed with success Brundle begins drinking and starts to get paranoid that Veronica has rekindled her relationship with her editor and former lover Stathis Borans John Getz. He decides to try teleporting himself but unbeknownst to him a housefly gets inside the pod with him.

He emerges in the other pod seemingly fine and initially feels he’s come out of the pod an ‘improved’ human with higher strength and stamina. However over the following weeks Brundle’s mood becomes highly erratic and he begins a bodily transformation that starts out with unwanted hairs and fingernails falling out but begins to progress into something much more destructive as he realises his pod had been contaminated. The transformation into ‘Brundlefly’ sees the scientist scrambling for a cure before it’s too late, desperately imploring a pregnant Veronica to help him.

Goldblum’s performance was rightly celebrated and it remains one of his most memorable roles to date. The special effects depicting Brundle’s deterioration were executed by Chris Walas‘ company and ended up rightfully winning an Academy Award. The film is as impressive as it was 30 years ago and is definitely one of Cronenberg’s best.

The artwork on this poster depicting a malevolent creature with fly eyes was painted by an unknown artist and also features the telepod that appeared on the US one sheet (though minus the fly’s leg). If anyone has any ideas who was responsible for it please send me an email.

Here’s the film’s original trailer.

Red Road / A1 / Czechoslovakia

17.02.16

Poster Poster
Title
Red Road
AKA
--
Year of Film
2006
Director
Andrea Arnold
Starring
Kate Dickie, Tony Curran, Martin Compston, Natalie Press, Paul Higgins, Andrew Armour
Origin of Film
UK | Denmark
Genre(s) of Film
Kate Dickie, Tony Curran, Martin Compston, Natalie Press, Paul Higgins, Andrew Armour,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Czechoslovakia
Year of Poster
2006
Designer
Tomáš Brousil
Artist
Tomáš Brousil
Size (inches)
23 7/16" x 33"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the Czech poster for the release of director Andrea Arnold’s 2006 drama Red Road. The film is set in and around Glasgow’s Red Road flats, a series of high-rise blocks designed in a brutalist style that were condemned in 2008 and demolished over five years, starting in 2015. Kate Dickie plays Jackie Morrison, a CCTV operator tasked with monitoring the flats. She is revealed to be living a simple, joyless life based around her work.

One evening a camera picks up the face of a man she wasn’t expecting to see and over the course of the film we watch as Jackie engineers getting closer to Clyde (Tony Curran) who is revealed to be a prisoner that was released early on good behaviour. Jackie hatches a plan to frame Clyde for rape and have him sent back to prison and only at the end of the film do we learn the horrifying reason for her wanting to punish him in such a way.

The film was shot in the Danish Dogme 95 style, which among other rules means utilising only natural lighting (no fake setups) and the use of handheld cameras. The film was rightly lauded and won the prestigious Jury Prize at the Cannes film festival in 2006. Dickie and Curran’s performances were also praised and the pair would go on to win multiple awards in the wake of the film’s release.

A reader of the site got in touch to confirm that the poster was designed by Tomáš Brousil, a renowned graphic artist and designer of fonts who has his own type foundry called Suitcase. According to the Czech Wikipedia page he was born in 1975 in Nitra, Slovakia and started studying at the renowned Academy of Arts in Prague in 2002. Since 2008 he has worked as a teaching assistant for the type designer and professor Jan Solpera. 

 

Heart Like a Wheel / A1 / Hungary

30.03.16

Poster Poster
Title
Heart Like a Wheel
AKA
--
Year of Film
1983
Director
Jonathan Kaplan
Starring
Bonnie Bedelia, Beau Bridges, Bruce Barlow, Leo Rossi, Anthony Edwards, Hoyt Axton, Paul Barte, Missy Basile
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bonnie Bedelia, Beau Bridges, Bruce Barlow, Leo Rossi, Anthony Edwards, Hoyt Axton, Paul Barte, Missy Basile,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Hungary
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Futó
Artist
Futó
Size (inches)
22 5/16" x 32 11/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Colourful and unique artwork features on this Hungarian poster for the release of the 1983 biographical drama Heart Like a Wheel. The film is based on the life of Shirley Muldowney who made history by becoming the first woman to compete in the sport of drag racing and who would go on to win an unprecedented three world championship awards. Born in Vermont in 1940, Shirley began amateur drag racing with the help of her then husband in the 1950s and had to battle against the prevailing misogynist views surrounding the ultra-macho sport.

Eventually in 1966, after proving her skills on the speedways and persuading three male drivers to sign a letter agreeing to it, the sport’s official body the National Hot Rod Association (NHRA) granted Shirley a licence to compete in the biggest events. Over the following four decades she consistently proved herself on the track, with awards in several of the sports’ categories, including the most prestigious Top Fuel events. The film deals with Shirley’s life on and off the track, including the breakup of her first marriage and a rocky relationship with another race driver called Connie Kalitta (Beau Bridges).

Bonnie Bedelia, perhaps best known as Holly McClane in Die Hard 1 and 2, was chosen to play Shirley, although the Muldowney apparently didn’t approve of the casting and had wanted Jamie Lee Curtis to depict her. 

The artwork on this poster features the signature of ‘Futó’, a Hungarian artist about whom I’ve been able to discover nothing. If anyone has any information about him or her please get in touch.

Cotton Club / A1 / Germany

23.05.16

Poster Poster

This is the poster for the German release of Francis Ford Coppola’s 1984 crime-drama/musical The Cotton Club. Legendary producer Robert Evans had originally planned to direct the film and the initial story and screenplay had been written by Mario ‘The Godfather’ Puzo, but Evans had a last-minute change of heart and asked Coppola to step in. Puzo’s script was apparently re-written by the author William Kennedy who ended up writing multiple drafts and ended up with a shared screenplay credit along with Coppola. Production was apparently beset with problems, including a spiralling budget that was provided by various parties including Las Vegas casino owners, an Arab arms dealer and a vaudeville performer. In typical fashion, Evans was determined to make the film as extravagant as possible and constructed ‘no expense spared’ sets, hiring some of the best technicians in the business at eye-watering figures.

Another likely reason that filming costs ballooned is the impressive ensemble cast that Evans and the studio were able to hire, which included the likes of Richard GereDiane LaneBob Hoskins and Gregory Hines. Loosely based on the real club of the same name that was located in New York’s Harlem neighbourhood, the story follows the machinations of various characters involved with the club in the 1930s, including Gere’s musician Dixie Dwyer whose dealings with the mobster owner of the club Owney Madden (Hoskins) sees him advance his career as an actor whilst having an affair with the girlfriend of the local kingpin, Dutch Schultz (James Remar). The film also follows Sandman Williams (Hines) a local dancer who falls for the club’s star performer Lila Rose Dwyer (Lonette McKee). Nicolas Cage appears as Dixie’s violent, racist brother Vincent who joins Schultz’s gang.

The film features several musical sequences and is soundtracked by several of the most popular jazz tunes of the era. Sadly, Coppola and Evans clashed regularly during the production and at a certain point the director apparently barred the producer from visiting the set. The Cotton Club was declared a flop when it opened in fourth place at the box-office and would eventually go on to recoup less than half of its reported budget of just under $60 million. Despite tepid critical reception the film was nevertheless nominated for several awards (only winning for Best Costumes at the BAFTAs). The film has something of a cult following today, with many fans speaking highly of the film’s production values and well-staged musical numbers. Rumours of a director’s cut release were ignited last year when Coppola declared that a restoration was in the works, reinstating several musical sequences that were apparently cut for its initial release.

This German poster was illustrated by Renato Casaro, an Italian with a prolific movie poster output that lasted over 35 years. He began his career in 1953, aged 19, at the famous Studio Favalli in Rome and would go on to design and paint posters for many of the biggest directors in the world. His skill at accurately portraying actors and his brilliant use of colour and composition saw him much in demand from studios and actors alike. His artwork has featured on posters used in multiple countries, including Japan, Germany, USA as well as in his native Italy.

Check out the incredible amount of work on his official website here, which also features a biography of the artist. In March 2014 I published an exclusive interview with Renato and it can be read by clicking here. The other posters I’ve collected by Renato Casaro are here.

Fish Tank / A1 / Czechoslovakia

20.10.16

Poster Poster

A unique design by Bohdan Heblik features on this Czech poster for the release of director Andrea Arnold‘s 2009 film Fish Tank. The British director won an Oscar for her short film Wasp in 2003 and her first feature-length film, Red Road, was released three years later. Like her first film, Fish Tank is a slice of gritty British realism focusing on a female protagonist. The location has changed, however, with East London replacing Glasgow.

Katie Jarvis plays the main character, 15-year-old Mia. Jarvis was a first-time actress who was cast after one of the film’s casting assistants saw her arguing with her boyfriend in public. Mia is a troubled teen who has been expelled from school multiple times. She lives with her mum Joanne (longtime Eastenders actress Kierston Wareing) and her younger sister on a council estate. She’s also a bit of a loner and has recently fallen out with her friend Keeley. Mia dreams of pursuing a career as a dancer and practices her moves in an empty flat on the estate. The arrival of her mum’s new boyfriend Connor (Michael Fassbender, just on the cusp of superstardom) into their home unsettles Mia. Although events quickly spiral out of control, Connor will prove to have a profound effect on the direction Mia’s life takes.

This Czech poster was created in 2010 for a yearly film festival called Projekt 100. This page has details about the festival:

“Each year, AČFK (the Association of Czech Film Clubs) selects a handful of classic films (and recent films of particular note) to be distributed at independent cinemas throughout the Czech Republic.”

Bohdan Heblik is a prolific Czech designer who has a personal website featuring plenty of examples of his work. There’s not much in the way of a biography but I believe he was born in 1978 and currently lives in Prague. It appears he’s worked on posters for the Projekt 100 festival three times, including 2010 when this poster was created. If you look on this page you can see the other designs he created that year, including one for the 1971 film Harold and Maude.

Escape From New York / A1 / teaser / Germany

25.09.12

Poster Poster
Title
Escape From New York
AKA
New York 1997 ( France / Japan - English title) | John Carpenter's Die Klapper-Schlange [Rattlesnake] (Germany)
Year of Film
1981
Director
John Carpenter
Starring
Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgnine, Donald Pleasence, Isaac Hayes, Harry Dean Stanton, Adrienne Barbeau, Season Hubley, Tom Atkins
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Kurt Russell, Lee Van Cleef, Ernest Borgnine, Donald Pleasence, Isaac Hayes, Harry Dean Stanton, Adrienne Barbeau, Season Hubley, Tom Atkins,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
Teaser
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1981
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
23 5/16" x 33"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
(see text below)

A simple but effective teaser for the German release of John Carpenter’s sci-fi classic Escape From New York, released as Die Klapper-Schlange (Rattlesnake). I’d have a hard time choosing my favourite of the three (fictional) characters Carpenter and Kurt Russell created together; R.J. MacReady (The Thing), Jack Burton (Big Trouble in Little China) and Snake Plissken (EFNY). The latter is the gruff former war hero and convicted bank robber who is sent onto the island of Manhattan of an alternative 1997, which has been sealed-off as a lawless prison, in search of the American President whose plane crashed there after a terrorist attack. He’s arguably the coolest of the three and is a character much imitated in other lesser films featuring a reluctant hero.

The tagline on this teaser actually spells Plissken as Plessken, which is likely to have been simply an error on the copywriter’s part but may have been intentionally changed (no idea why!). A German friend translated the copy and it reads as follows:

‘Snake Plessken,  the “Rattlesnake”- he has to get in there, where nobody has yet escaped – in a city like a prison – 10 million inhabitants – everyone of them a gangster – New York 1997’

The rest of the John Carpenter posters I’ve collected can be seen by clicking here.

Dances With Wolves / A1 / Germany

30.01.13

Poster Poster
Title
Dances With Wolves
AKA
Der mit dem Wolf tanzt (Germany)
Year of Film
1990
Director
Kevin Costner
Starring
Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant
Origin of Film
USA | UK
Genre(s) of Film
Kevin Costner, Mary McDonnell, Graham Greene, Rodney A. Grant,
Type of Poster
A1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Germany
Year of Poster
1990
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Renato Casaro
Size (inches)
23 5/16" x 33"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
--

It’s hard to believe it’s now 23 years since Kevin Costner’s epic western Dances with Wolves was first released, and whilst it’s easy to be sniffy about later efforts like Waterworld (1995) and The Postman (1997 – also directed by him), this film still stands up as a memorable and touching story of the end of the Wild West and of the Native American’s interaction with The White People whose journey across the country would ultimately prove disastrous for so many tribes. Set during the Civil War, it tells the story of Lieutenant Dunbar (Costner) who actively seeks exile at a lonely frontier outpost and follows his experiences as he copes with the harsh climate, lack of supplies and dealings with the local Indians. Eventually he adapts to life on the frontier and begins to earn the trust of the tribes, but it’s not long before the war, and other less friendly Native Americans, challenge his newfound identity.

This German A1 poster, which features a fantastic portrait of actor Graham Greene alongside Costner, and a shot from the buffalo hunt scene, was illustrated by one of my favourite artists, Renato Casaro, an Italian with a prolific movie poster output that lasted over 40 years. He began his career in 1953, aged 19, at the famous Studio Favalli in Rome, which was part of the legendary Cinecittà studios and handled film publicity for many Italian productions. Casaro would go on to design and paint posters for many of the biggest directors in the world and his skill at accurately portraying actors and his brilliant use of colour and composition saw him much in demand from studios and actors alike.

His artwork has featured on many German posters as well as others from countries including Japan, UK, North America as well as in his native Italy. Check out the incredible amount of work on his official website here, which also features a biography of the artist. The other posters I’ve collected by Casaro can be seen by clicking here.

The Running Man / A1 / Germany

15.08.14

Poster Poster

In the mid 1980s there were few actors who could get away with having their head dominate a film poster, and fewer still who could couple that with their surname in giant letters spread across the full width of the poster. One such actor was Arnold Schwarzenegger, the star of several action flicks including The Running Man. Set in the dystopian future of 2017 where the world’s economy is in ruins and America is a totalitarian police state, the populace is pacified by the broadcasting of a series of gameshows that see convicted prisoners fighting for their lives across various kinds of formats. The most popular of these shows is the titular Running Man in which the unwilling participants must try to survive in a closed-off area against an onslaught of vicious killers with catchy names and different methods of dispatching their prey.

Ben Richards (Schwarzenegger) is a former police helicopter pilot who was wrongly convicted of massacring a crowd of people and sent to prison. After escaping several months later with a pair of fellow convicts, Richards is preparing to flee the country but is turned into the authorities by Amber Mendez (Maria Conchita Alonso), a composer for the network that he finds living in his brother’s apartment. He is taken to the Running Man studio where he meets the ruthless show host Damon Killian (a memorable turn by the late Richard Dawson) who informs him that unless he takes part in the show his two friends will be sent in his place. After agreeing to get dropped into the play zone, Richards finds that Killian has tricked him and has also sent his pals into the arena. The trio must face-off against the killers whilst trying to work out how to escape the arena and put an end to the show once and for all. When Amber looks a little too closely at the reasons for Ben Richards’ incarceration, she too is captured and dropped into the Running Man arena (she’s pictured next to Arnie on this quad).

Ably directed by Paul Michael Glaser, best known for his acting career – he was Starsky in the classic 1970s cop show Starsky and Hutch – the film is well paced and features several memorable scenes, whilst not holding back on the the violence and gore. The bad guy killers, including Sub Zero, Fireball and Captain Freedom and particularly memorable. It’s definitely a highlight of the Austrian Oak’s filmography, although it was released the same year as the incredible Predator, which is unquestionably the better film.

The excellent artwork on this German A1 was painted by the celebrated Italian artist Renato Casaro who worked on a significant number of German posters during the 1980s and 1990s. In March 2014 I published a lengthy interview I carried out with Renato and that can be read by clicking here. The other posters I’ve collected by the artist can be seen by clicking here.