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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.

Orca / B2 / style A / Japan

30.12.13

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 A
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 the ‘style A (black surround)’ and I also have the other two styles which will be added to the site eventually. 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.

Vanishing Point / B2 / Japan

30.05.12

Poster Poster
Title
Vanishing Point
AKA
--
Year of Film
1971
Director
Richard C. Sarafian
Starring
Barry Newman, Cleavon Little, Dean Jagger, Victoria Medlin, Paul Koslo, Robert Donner, Timothy Scott, Charlotte Rampling, Gilda Texter
Origin of Film
USA | UK
Genre(s) of Film
Barry Newman, Cleavon Little, Dean Jagger, Victoria Medlin, Paul Koslo, Robert Donner, Timothy Scott, Charlotte Rampling, Gilda Texter,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1971
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 12/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
--

The car’s the star on this Japanese poster for the classic 1971 road movie, Vanishing Point, starring the then unknown actor Barry Newman as the legendary delivery driver Kowalski. Tasked with driving a 1970 Dodge Challenger (R/T 440 Magnum) from Colorado to San Francisco, Kowalski accepts a bet that he can’t get the car to its destination in less than 15 hours.

After a run in with two motorcycle cops a pursuit commences and the driver does his best to stay on target and evade arrest, helped along the way by an enigmatic DJ named Super Soul (Cleavon Little). During the pursuit Kowalski meets an array of characters, including a snake-catching prospector (Dean Jagger), gun-toting gay hitchhikers and a hippie biker with a girlfriend who rides stark-naked (as featured on this poster).

There are actually two versions of the film and the one that was shown in the cinema in the UK is actually longer than the US cut, featuring an extra scene of a drug-taking hitchhiker played by British actor Charlotte Rampling. Both versions are available on the recently released blu-ray.

The film has had an undeniable cultural impact, influencing multiple other films and even musicians, with Brit group Primal Scream naming their 1997 album after the film and lead singer  Bobby Gillespie saying that, “The music in the film is hippy music, so we thought, ‘Why not record some music that really reflects the mood of the film?’ It’s always been a favourite of the band, we love the air of paranoia and speed-freak righteousness … It’s a pure underground film, rammed with claustrophobia”

Quentin Tarantino‘s half of Grindhouse, Death Proof, continually references the film and features an almost identical Dodge Charger in one of its key car chases. I hadn’t realised but there was actually a TV remake of the film made in 1997 and starring Viggo Mortensen as Kowalski.

The original trailer is on YouTube.

Orca / B2 / style C / Japan

12.06.15

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 C
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1977
Designer
Unknown
Artist
'Dino'
Size (inches)
20 3/16" 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 C and there’s also the style A and style B. There’s a signature that looks like ‘Dino’ at the bottom of the art (see picture 5) but if anyone knows which artist this belongs to please get in touch.

Check out the bonkers original trailer on YouTube.

Melancholia / one sheet / water style / USA

30.05.13

Poster Poster

Notorious Danish director Lars von Trier‘s apocalyptic drama Melancholia‘s 2011 release was somewhat overshadowed by the controversy surrounding his comments at the Cannes festival press conference for the film in which he expressed various (idiotic) thoughts, including ‘What can I say? I understand Hitler, but I think he did some wrong things, yes, absolutely. … He’s not what you would call a good guy, but I understand much about him, and I sympathise with him a little bit.’ This and various other comments saw the director being declared ‘persona non grata’ by the festival’s directors in an unprecedented move. Von Trier apologised for his remarks hours later and even held a press conference in Danish, but the damage was done.

Arguably the director’s most accessible film, certainly when compared to his earlier Dogme 95 features and 2009’s Antichrist, Melancholia opens with a stunning CGI sequence showing the destruction of Earth as the titular planet smashes straight into it. Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and Justine (Kirsten Dunst) are sisters dealing with different forms of anxiety and depression during the latter’s wedding reception taking place on the family estate. Justine is shown to be almost catatonic with depression whilst Claire is dealing with her fears over a large blue planet which is revealed to be on a collision course with Earth. The film is split into two sections and follows the way each woman deals with the impending destruction and their relationships with the people around them.

According to this interview article with the director, ‘the idea for the film emerged while he was in treatment for the depression that has haunted him in recent years. A therapist told him a theory that depressives and melancholics act more calmly in violent situations, while “ordinary, happy” people are more apt to panic. Melancholics are ready for it. They already know everything is going to hell.’

This is the ‘water’ style American one sheet for the film that, like the ‘lightning‘ style is pretty much a still shot from the film (with likely some minor adjustments). It was designed by the Los Angeles-based company Gravillis inc. who are responsible for some of my favourite recent one sheets, including Monsters and I Saw the Devil. IMPAwards features a gallery of a lot of their work. Melancholia was also given a set of teaser posters that can be seen on IMPAwards and features, bizarrely, a Lars von Trier version!

Melancholia / one sheet / lightning style / USA

30.05.13

Poster Poster

Notorious Danish director Lars von Trier‘s apocalyptic drama Melancholia‘s 2011 release was somewhat overshadowed by the controversy surrounding his comments at the Cannes festival press conference for the film in which he expressed various (idiotic) thoughts, including ‘What can I say? I understand Hitler, but I think he did some wrong things, yes, absolutely. … He’s not what you would call a good guy, but I understand much about him, and I sympathise with him a little bit.’ This and various other comments saw the director being declared ‘persona non grata’ by the festival’s directors in an unprecedented move. Von Trier apologised for his remarks hours later and even held a press conference in Danish, but the damage was done.

Arguably the director’s most accessible film, certainly when compared to his earlier Dogme 95 features and 2009’s Antichrist, Melancholia opens with a stunning CGI sequence showing the destruction of Earth as the titular planet smashes straight into it. Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and Justine (Kirsten Dunst) are sisters dealing with different forms of anxiety and depression during the latter’s wedding reception taking place on the family estate. Justine is shown to be almost catatonic with depression whilst Claire is dealing with her fears over a large blue planet which is revealed to be on a collision course with Earth. The film is split into two sections and follows the way each woman deals with the impending destruction and their relationships with the people around them.

According to this interview article with the director, ‘the idea for the film emerged while he was in treatment for the depression that has haunted him in recent years. A therapist told him a theory that depressives and melancholics act more calmly in violent situations, while “ordinary, happy” people are more apt to panic. Melancholics are ready for it. They already know everything is going to hell.’

This is the ‘static lightning’ style American one sheet for the film that, like the ‘water‘ style is pretty much a still shot from the film (with likely some minor adjustments). It was designed by the Los Angeles-based company Gravillis inc. who are responsible for some of my favourite recent one sheets, including Monsters and I Saw the Devil. IMPAwards features a gallery of a lot of their work. Melancholia was also given a set of teaser posters that can be seen on IMPAwards and features, bizarrely, a Lars von Trier version!

Life During Wartime / one sheet / USA

18.10.16

Poster Poster

Artwork by artist Akiko Stehrenberger features on this one sheet poster for the release of director Todd Solondz‘s Life During Wartime. The film is a sort of semi-sequel to Happiness which he directed 11 years earlier. It features the same characters but each one has been re-cast with new actors. The plot mainly revolves around the three Jordan sisters that appeared in Happiness and looks at where their lives are a decade later. Like the director’s other films it straddles a fine line between dark comedy and uncomfortable drama. The performances from the likes of Allison JanneyShirley Henderson and Michael Lerner are all excellent and, although perhaps not as memorable as Happiness, it’s still worth a watch.

Akiko Stehrenberger is one of my favourite poster artists working today and she’s created several memorable pieces of key poster art over the past few years. As detailed on her official website, Akiko began her career in New York City as an illustrator for various magazines, including SPIN and The Source. In 2004 she moved to Los Angeles and began working on illustrations for film posters as well as other freelance projects. She’s won multiple awards and has created poster designs for some of the most celebrated directors working today.

One of her most celebrated posters is the one sheet for Funny Games, Michael Haneke’s 2008 remake of his own film of the same name, released a decade earlier. When first released, many people assumed it was a manipulated photograph of the actress Naomi Watts but this excellent interview on Mubi confirms that it’s a digital illustration. The article is well worth a read to get an idea of how Akiko works and the process she went through for that poster. The gallery of posters on her website features a mixture of designs that were chosen by the distributor to be used as official campaign material as well as ones that didn’t get chosen but are nevertheless excellent. I particularly love this poster for Blue Ruin and the unused quad art for Under the Skin. You can see from her portfolio of work that she’s not afraid to experiment with new styles for each project.

There’s another gallery of her work on IMPawards.

Angel Heart / A1 / Germany

24.09.14

Poster Poster

This is the original German poster for the release of Alan Parker’s Angel Heart, featuring excellent portraits of its two main stars, Robert De Niro and Mickey Rourke, that were painted by Renato Casaro. An occult mystery thriller, the film was adapted by Parker, a British screen writer, producer and director, from the novel Falling Angel by William Hjortsberg. Set in 1955, the story follows private detective Harry Angel (Rourke) after he is hired by a law firm to find a missing pre-war singer called Johnny Favorite on behalf of their enigmatic client Louis Cyphre (De Niro). The trail leads Angel to a hospital where Favorite was last seen and he discovers that the singer was taken away by a mysterious benefactor whilst suffering from dementia caused by war injuries. He next travels to New Orleans in search of his ex-wife and then one of Favorite’s former band mates, but as the witnesses he meets all end up murdered Angel suspects that all is not what it seems with Cyphre and finding the truth about the singer’s disappearance becomes more than just another job.

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

Swimming Pool / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Swimming Pool
AKA
--
Year of Film
2003
Director
François Ozon
Starring
Charlotte Rampling, Ludivine Sagnier, Charles Dance, Jean-Marie Lamour, Marc Fayolle, Mireille Mossé, Lauren Farrow, Sebastian Harcombe, Frances Cuka
Origin of Film
France | UK
Genre(s) of Film
Charlotte Rampling, Ludivine Sagnier, Charles Dance, Jean-Marie Lamour, Marc Fayolle, Mireille Mossé, Lauren Farrow, Sebastian Harcombe, Frances Cuka,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2003
Designer
Pulse Advertising
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
On the surface, all is calm.

The Night Porter / B2 / 1996 re-release / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Night Porter
AKA
Il portiere di notte (Italy - original title)
Year of Film
1974
Director
Lilian Cavani
Starring
Dirk Bogarde, Charlotte Rampling, Philippe Leroy, Gabriele Ferzetti, Isa Miranda
Origin of Film
Italy
Genre(s) of Film
Dirk Bogarde, Charlotte Rampling, Philippe Leroy, Gabriele Ferzetti, Isa Miranda,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1996
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
20 6/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Zardoz / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
Zardoz
AKA
--
Year of Film
1974
Director
John Boorman
Starring
Sean Connery, Charlotte Rampling, Sara Kestelman, John Alderton, Sally Anne Newton, Niall Buggy, Bosco Hogan, Jessica Swift, Reginald Jarman
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Sean Connery, Charlotte Rampling, Sara Kestelman, John Alderton, Sally Anne Newton, Niall Buggy, Bosco Hogan, Jessica Swift, Reginald Jarman,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
20 3/16" x 28 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Zardoz / 30×40 / USA

03.10.11

Poster Poster
Title
Zardoz
AKA
--
Year of Film
1974
Director
John Boorman
Starring
Sean Connery, Charlotte Rampling, Sara Kestelman, John Alderton, Sally Anne Newton, Niall Buggy, Bosco Hogan, Jessica Swift, Reginald Jarman
Origin of Film
UK
Genre(s) of Film
Sean Connery, Charlotte Rampling, Sara Kestelman, John Alderton, Sally Anne Newton, Niall Buggy, Bosco Hogan, Jessica Swift, Reginald Jarman,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1974
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Ron Lesser
Size (inches)
30" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
74/31
Tagline
Beyond 1984, Beyond 2001, Beyond Love, Beyond Death.

Utterly bonkers, laughably terrible, bizarrely brilliant; Zardoz is one of those films that you have to see at least once just to believe that it was even made. There are countless unforgettable images in the film, not least of which is Sean Connery in a red leather nappy and knee-high boots. There’s also a moment where he dons a wedding dress.

The script is also rather special; ‘The Penis is evil! The Penis shoots Seeds, and makes new Life to poison the Earth with a plague of men, as once it was. But the Gun shoots Death and purifies the Earth of the filth of Brutals. Go forth, and kill! Zardoz has spoken”

I’m a fan of this poster for a number of reasons, including the tagline and the strange choice of images to depict from the film, but it’s the film’s logo that deserves special mention as surely one of the best of the 1970s, if not ever.

The artist for this poster is American artist Ron Lesser, who is also responsible for the excellent High Plains Drifter one sheet (thanks to MightyMcT for confirming this).

Check out the trailer to get a taste of the wonder of Zardoz. If you want to see the best bits someone has made a short film entitled ‘Zardoz in 10 minutes’.

Finally, bear witness to Zardoz dog!