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Piranha / B2 / style A / Japan

22.02.15

Poster Poster
Title
Piranha
AKA
--
Year of Film
1978
Director
Joe Dante
Starring
Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski, Richard Deacon
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski, Richard Deacon,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Style A
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1978
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Bob Larkin
Size (inches)
20 5/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Director Joe Dante‘s Piranha was one of several killer nature films that followed in the wake of the runaway success of Spielberg’s Jaws. Executive produced by legendary schlockmeister Roger Corman and co-written by John Sayles (his first credit and before he began his directing career) the film was also one of the first jobs for special effects maestros Rob Bottin and Phil Tippett. The film begins as a young couple hiking enter an apparently abandoned military complex and jump into what looks like a swimming pool, but something deadly lurks below the water and the pair soon disappear screaming under the surface. Maggie McKeown (Heather Menzies), an insurance investigator, is dispatched to try and track down the teenagers and hires local drunkard Paul Grogan (Bradford Dillman) to help her.

The pair stumble across the complex and end up draining the pool to see if there’s anything at the bottom. When they do a bedraggled man appears from somewhere in the complex and attacks them to try and stop the pool being emptied. Grogan subdues him and the man proceeds to tell them that the water contained genetically-modified oversized killer piranha fish that were intended to be used against the enemy in the Vietnam war. The drainage pipe leads to a river and Lost River Lake, which is home to a children’s summer camp and a holiday resort. The trio set off to try and warn the camp and resort inhabitants but the fish have already made good progress and evidence of their deadly nature is discovered on the journey to Lost River Lake.

Produced on a reported budget of $600k, the film is certainly no classic but is entertaining enough, featured plenty of shocks to keep audiences happy and rake in a significant profit for Corman’s New World Pictures. Universal Studios, the Jaws production company, were all set to sue New World until Spielberg saw the film and gave it his blessing.

This Japanese B2 features artwork by the American artist Bob Larkin (born 1949) who is primarily known for his work on Marvel comics covers, including Savage Sword of Conan and Planet of the Apes. He also worked on covers for other comics distributors, magazines and packaging for toys. Larkin painted a handful of other film posters, including Monster (AKA Humanoids from the Deep) and Piranha II: The Spawning. The Bob Larkin: Illustrated Man site features a load of examples of his work, including many original paintings.

The Enforcer / B2 / style B / Japan

23.10.13

Poster Poster
Title
The Enforcer
AKA
Dirty Harry 3 (Japan - English title) | Cielo di piombo, ispettore Callaghan [Lead sky, Inspector Callaghan] (Italy)
Year of Film
1976
Director
James Fargo
Starring
Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Bradford Dillman, Tyne Daly, DeVeren Bookwalter
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Bradford Dillman, Tyne Daly, DeVeren Bookwalter,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Style B
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1976
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 4/16" x 28 12/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

A classic image of Clint Eastwood brandishing his giant magnum pistol as detective Harold ‘Dirty Harry’ Callahan in The Enforcer, the third instalment of the series that was instrumental, along with his roles in a series of westerns, in cementing the actors position as a movie megastar. Set three years after the events in Magnum Force, the story sees Harry taken off detective duties following his decision to end a liquor store robbery by driving his car through the front window before shooting the protagonists. Whilst working for personnel and interviewing prospective recruits to enter the detective division he learns that three new detectives will be women, including Kate Moore (Tyne Daly), much to his bemusement (he is a 1970s, misogynist dinosaur let’s not forget)

When a terrorist group calling themselves the People’s Revolutionary Strike Force (PRSF) start a rampage of robbery and bombings, one of which sees his old partner killed in action, Harry is allowed back into the field and is reluctantly paired with Detective Moore to try and put a stop to the group’s actions. After stealing several arms caches, the PRSF then boldly kidnaps San Francisco’s mayor and demands a $2 million ransom, but the detectives are quickly onto their location and the scene is set for a final, explosive showdown.

This image of the smashed car window was photographed especially for the marketing campaign and ended up being used for posters around the world, including the American half sheet, the British quad and this Japanese B2. There is also a style A B2 that can be viewed here.

The Enforcer / B2 / style A / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Enforcer
AKA
Dirty Harry 3 (Japan - English title) | Cielo di piombo, ispettore Callaghan [Lead sky, Inspector Callaghan] (Italy)
Year of Film
1976
Director
James Fargo
Starring
Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Bradford Dillman, Tyne Daly, DeVeren Bookwalter
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Bradford Dillman, Tyne Daly, DeVeren Bookwalter,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Style A
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1976
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 12/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Sudden Impact / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Sudden Impact
AKA
Dirty Harry 4 (Japan - English title) | Coraggio... fatti ammazzare (Italy)
Year of Film
1983
Director
Clint Eastwood
Starring
Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke, Pat Hingle, Bradford Dillman, Paul Drake, Audrie J. Neenan, Jack Thibeau, Michael Currie, Albert Popwell, Mark Keyloun, Kevyn Major Howard
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke, Pat Hingle, Bradford Dillman, Paul Drake, Audrie J. Neenan, Jack Thibeau, Michael Currie, Albert Popwell, Mark Keyloun, Kevyn Major Howard,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1983
Designer
Bill Gold (original USA version)
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Sudden Impact / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Sudden Impact
AKA
Dirty Harry 4 (Japan - English title) | Coraggio... fatti ammazzare (Italy)
Year of Film
1983
Director
Clint Eastwood
Starring
Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke, Pat Hingle, Bradford Dillman, Paul Drake, Audrie J. Neenan, Jack Thibeau, Michael Currie, Albert Popwell, Mark Keyloun, Kevyn Major Howard
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Clint Eastwood, Sondra Locke, Pat Hingle, Bradford Dillman, Paul Drake, Audrie J. Neenan, Jack Thibeau, Michael Currie, Albert Popwell, Mark Keyloun, Kevyn Major Howard,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1983
Designer
Bill Gold
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
830169
Tagline
Dirty Harry is at it again.

Piranha / B2 / style B / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Piranha
AKA
--
Year of Film
1978
Director
Joe Dante
Starring
Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski, Richard Deacon
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Barbara Steele, Dick Miller, Belinda Balaski, Richard Deacon,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Style B
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1978
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Escape From The Planet Of The Apes / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

99 and 44/100% Dead / 30×40 / USA

12.12.11

Poster Poster
Title
99 and 44/100% Dead
AKA
Call Harry Crown (re-title)
Year of Film
1974
Director
John Frankenheimer
Starring
Richard Harris, Edmond O'Brien, Bradford Dillman, Ann Turkel, Constance Ford, Zooey Hall, Kathrine Baumann, Janice Heiden, Max Kleven
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Richard Harris, Edmond O'Brien, Bradford Dillman, Ann Turkel, Constance Ford, Zooey Hall, Kathrine Baumann, Janice Heiden, Max Kleven,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Bill Gold
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
30 1/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
74/187
Tagline
Everyone is dying to meet Harry Crown.

I’ll admit to not having seen John Frankenheimer’s film about a war between two rival crime gangs and the hitman (the late Richard Harris) who is caught between them. From reading various reviews and articles online it seems like the film is trapped between genres; it was intended as a black comedy but apparently features many scenes of over-the-top violence and the humour often falls flat. This quote from an IMDb review gives you some idea:

The substandard mafia plot sits second tier to the film’s sporadic comedy spoofing and mugging, much of what both fails and succeeds simultaneously at the hands of its dramatic director who must have been at the peek of his well publicized cocaine binge.

It certainly sounds like an interesting film (one reviewer describes it as a ‘beautiful mistake’) and I intend to check it out soon because Shout Factory, a US DVD label, are releasing the film in a double-bill with another 1974 film The Nickel Ride this week.

The title is definitely an odd one and is apparently referencing the advertising slogan (at the time) of Ivory Soap, a popular brand of cleaning product that is still available today. Here’s a none-more-1970s advert that features the tagline. The name was obviously simplified at a certain point as it’s now known as ‘Call Harry Crown’ on IMDb.

This US 30×40 poster was designed by the great Bill Gold and features a Roy Lichtenstein-esque pop-art image. I’m not sure who is responsible for the artwork but it’s possible it could be John Van Hamersveld who illustrated the awesome Get Carter pop-art style one sheet. If anyone knows this for sure I’d appreciate the confirmation so leave a comment or send me an email.

This pop-art inspiration also extended to the opening sequence that can be watched here.

The original trailer is on YouTube.