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The Day the Earth Stood Still / one sheet / 1994 re-release / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Day The Earth Stood Still
AKA
Ultimatum alla Terra [Ultimatum to earth] (Italy)
Year of Film
1951
Director
Robert Wise
Starring
Michael Rennie, Patricia Neal, Billy Gray, Hugh Marlowe, Sam Jaffe, Frances Bavier, Lock Martin, Frank Conroy, Tyler McVey
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Michael Rennie, Patricia Neal, Billy Gray, Hugh Marlowe, Sam Jaffe, Frances Bavier, Lock Martin, Frank Conroy, Tyler McVey,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Killian re-release
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1994
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert Rodriguez
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
R94/1951
Tagline
From out of space... A warning and an ultimatum!

The Delta Force / one sheet / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster

The Hindenburg / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

The Towering Inferno / B2 / style A / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Vampire Circus / 30×40 / USA

29.07.13

Poster Poster

The taglines on this US 30×40 left cinema-goers in no doubt as to the kind of film they were in for with Hammer Films‘ 1972 horror Vampire Circus. Released at a time when the popularity of British gothic horror tales was on the wane, particularly when compared against the more explicit, contemporary horrors coming out of Hollywood (Rosemary’s Baby and later The Exorcist), the film nevertheless managed to stand out from a glut of other films produced by the studio around the same time. A decent script, typically excellent production design and a raft of quality British thespians all help to make Vampire Circus one of the more memorable films to be produced by the House of Horror before its first demise picked up pace a couple of years later

Set in a small village in the studio’s customary ‘mittel-Europe’ sometime in the 19th century, a lengthy pre-credits sequence shows a young girl being led into the castle of vampire Count Mitterhaus by Anna (Domini Blythe), the wife of local schoolmaster Albert Müller (Laurence Payne). Soon after the girl is murdered by the vampire, a group of villagers led by Müller storm the castle, stake the Count and burn the castle to the ground. Anna manages to drag the dying vampire to the crypt beneath the castle and before he perishes he curses the villagers and promises that their children will die to give him back his life. Fast-forward fifteen years, the village is beset by a plague and blockaded by the authorities with the miserable villagers fearing that this is the Count’s doing.

One day the eponymous travelling troupe arrives, having apparently snuck past the blockades, led by a mysterious gypsy woman (Adrienne Corri) and containing a ragtag bunch of performers, including a mischievous clown dwarf, a set of flying twins, an erotic tiger dancer (as depicted on this poster) and Emil, a shape-shifting artiste. At first the villagers are happy to be entertained by the circus as it gives them a reprieve from their misery, but it soon becomes clear that the gang have an ulterior motive for being there. Before long the Count’s dying promise is being kept by Emil, who it turns out is a ‘kinsman’ of Mitterhaus, and the leaders of the village must battle to try to stop the murder of their children and the resurrection of the cursed Count. It’s a well-paced film and certainly a stand-out feature in Hammer’s output of the early 1970s, only let down by some dodgy special effects, which can be explained by a curtailed production period and the dwindling budgets of the time.

I’m unsure who is responsible for the artwork on this American poster, which depicts Emil in all his fang-baring glory, so if you have any ideas please get in touch.

Vampire Circus / quad / UK

06.02.14

Poster Poster

Iconic Vic Fair artwork graces this UK quad for the release of Hammer Films‘ 1972 horror Vampire Circus. Released at a time when the popularity of British gothic horror tales was on the wane, particularly when compared against the more explicit, contemporary horrors coming out of Hollywood (Rosemary’s Baby and later The Exorcist), the film nevertheless managed to stand out from a glut of other films produced by the studio around the same time. A decent script, typically excellent production design and a raft of quality British thespians all help to make Vampire Circus one of the more memorable films to be produced by the House of Horror before its first demise picked up pace a couple of years later

Set in a small village in the studio’s customary ‘mittel-Europe’ sometime in the 19th century, a lengthy pre-credits sequence shows a young girl being led into the castle of vampire Count Mitterhaus by Anna (Domini Blythe), the wife of local schoolmaster Albert Müller (Laurence Payne). Soon after the girl is murdered by the vampire, a group of villagers led by Müller storm the castle, stake the Count and burn the castle to the ground. Anna manages to drag the dying vampire to the crypt beneath the castle and before he perishes he curses the villagers and promises that their children will die to give him back his life. Fast-forward fifteen years, the village is beset by a plague and blockaded by the authorities with the miserable villagers fearing that this is the Count’s doing.

One day the eponymous travelling troupe arrives, having apparently snuck past the blockades, led by a mysterious gypsy woman (Adrienne Corri) and containing a ragtag bunch of performers, including a mischievous clown dwarf, a set of flying twins, an erotic tiger dancer (as depicted on this poster) and Emil, a shape-shifting artiste. At first the villagers are happy to be entertained by the circus as it gives them a reprieve from their misery, but it soon becomes clear that the gang have an ulterior motive for being there. Before long the Count’s dying promise is being kept by Emil, who it turns out is a ‘kinsman’ of Mitterhaus, and the leaders of the village must battle to try to stop the murder of their children and the resurrection of the cursed Count. It’s a well-paced film and certainly a stand-out feature in Hammer’s output of the early 1970s, only let down by some dodgy special effects, which can be explained by a curtailed production period and the dwindling budgets of the time.

During my interview with Vic Fair that was published at the end of 2013 I asked the artist about his work on the poster and this is an excerpt from that article (which also features an image of the original sketch created for the poster):

‘I enjoyed working on the quad I designed for Vampire Circus. I’d wanted to design something that might have been used to advertise an actual circus. The animals on there were pretty much copied directly from a children’s book, as I really didn’t have that much time to work on it. I thought they looked quite amusing, since they’re not exactly anatomically correct portraits of tigers and lions! I also had fun sneaking in the hidden male members, which was really just meant as a bit of a tease towards certain people behind the scenes. I can’t believe I got away with it really.’

To see the other posters I’ve collected that were designed by Vic click here.

Note that this copy came from Vic’s personal archive and it is signed in the bottom right-hand corner.

Mr Ricco / 30×40 / USA

03.01.14

Poster Poster
Title
Mr Ricco
AKA
--
Year of Film
1975
Director
Paul Bogart
Starring
Dean Martin, Eugene Roche, Thalmus Rasulala, Denise Nicholas, Cindy Williams, Geraldine Brooks, Philip Michael Thomas, George Tyne, Robert Sampson, Michael Gregory, Joseph Hacker, Frank Puglia
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Dean Martin, Eugene Roche, Thalmus Rasulala, Denise Nicholas, Cindy Williams, Geraldine Brooks, Philip Michael Thomas, George Tyne, Robert Sampson, Michael Gregory, Joseph Hacker, Frank Puglia,
Type of Poster
30x40
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1975
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Larry Salk
Size (inches)
30" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
75/27
Tagline
The one thing people hate more than a cop killer... is the lawyer who gets him off!

Mr Ricco, a little-seen 1970s crime thriller, marked the last starring role in film for ‘The King of Cool’ Dean Martin (unless you count his cameos in the two Cannonball Run films). The Italian-American entertainer, who had seen great success in several of his earlier roles including Rio Bravo and Ocean’s Eleven (with his fellow Rat Pack members), would continue to make popular TV appearances and music recordings but never headline a film again. After reading the reviews on IMDb it appears he was probably getting too old to convincingly pull-off the action scenes that roles like this one required.

Martin appears in the title role as Joe Ricco, a San Francisco lawyer who successfully defends Frankie Steele (Thalmus Rasulala) a member of a black militant group charged with murdering a woman. Shortly afterwards two cops are gunned down and Steele is implicated in the crime after witnesses describe seeing him fleeing the scene. The detective in charge of the case, George Cronyn (Eugene Roche), is angered that Steele appears to have got away with it again and decides to kill one of the members of the Black Serpents (Steele’s group) and implicate another in the cops’ murder. Ricco agrees to defend the wrongly-accused man but soon after is targeted by a lone sniper who almost kills him. Once again, Steele is implicated in the attempted murder so Ricco sets out to discover why his former client is trying to kill him.

This US 30×40 features artwork by 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 the advance for Superman III) and he was the artist who painted the famous portrait of Cosmo Kramer from Seinfeld. He apparently passed away in 2004.

Planet Terror / one sheet / international

28.03.14

Poster Poster
Title
Planet Terror
AKA
Grindhouse Presents: Robert Rodriguez's Planet Terror (full title)
Year of Film
2007
Director
Robert Rodriguez
Starring
Rose McGowan, Freddy Rodríguez, Josh Brolin, Marley Shelton, Jeff Fahey, Michael Biehn, Rebel Rodriguez, Bruce Willis, Naveen Andrews, Julio Oscar Mechoso, Fergie Duhamel, Nicky Katt
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Rose McGowan, Freddy Rodríguez, Josh Brolin, Marley Shelton, Jeff Fahey, Michael Biehn, Rebel Rodriguez, Bruce Willis, Naveen Andrews, Julio Oscar Mechoso, Fergie Duhamel, Nicky Katt,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
International
Year of Poster
2007
Designer
BLT Communications
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
--
Tagline
Humanity's last hope... RESTS ON A HIGH POWER MACHINE GUN!

This is the scarce international one sheet for the release of Robert Rodriguez’s half of the ill-fated Grindhouse project, Planet Terror. A carnage-filled action-fest, the film opens as a deadly new nerve gas is accidentally released at a Texas military base after a deal between a demented army man (Bruce Willis) and an insane chemical scientist (Naveen Andrews) goes awry. The gas quickly spreads across the state and infects anyone who comes in contact with it, immediately turning them into blood-thirsty mutated zombies.

Meanwhile, a go-go dancer called Cherry (Rose McGowan) is escaping from her low paid job with ex-boyfriend Wray (Freddy Rodríguez) when a zombie attack causes their truck to crash. After having one of her legs torn off by the creatures, Cherry eventually straps a machine gun/grenade launcher combo in place of her missing appendage and, together with El Ray and a bunch of other survivors, head to the army base to try and find a cure for the infection before its too late.

The project was conceived by Tarantino and fellow director (and frequent collaborator) Robert Rodriguez as a homage to the 1970s grindhouse cinemas that would show horror, sci-fi and cult b-movies, often in double or even triple bills. Grindhouse features Planet Terror paired with Tarantino’s Death Proof whilst a series of fake trailers were filmed and shown before each feature began. The trailers were created especially for Grindhouse by directors including Rob Zombie, Eli Roth and Edgar Wright. One of the trailers for a film called Machete starring Danny Trejo was directed by Rodriguez and was later made into a full length feature, the sequel to which is just about to be released into cinemas in the UK.

The Grindhouse project was shepherded by Tarantino’s regular producing partner Harvey Weinstein and when the film had a near disastrous North American box-office debut, despite positive reviews, the decision was then made to split the two films apart and release them separately in cinemas in the rest of the world. Blame was placed both on the overall length of Grindhouse (three hours plus) and reports that many cinema-goers were confused by the structure and left during the credits of Planet Terror. Both films had multiple minutes added back to their length in order to justify the ticket price of a standalone feature. Two films meant that many more posters were created to market the films and there were two one sheets that were printed in the USA for use internationally – typically that means in English-speaking territories outside of North America like Singapore and Hong Kong.

There is also a scarce Death Proof international one sheet that can be viewed here.

Weird Science / one sheet / USA

09.04.14

Poster Poster
Title
Weird Science
AKA
La chica explosiva (Argentina)
Year of Film
1985
Director
John Hughes
Starring
Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton, Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Rusler, Vernon Wells, Britt Leach, Barbara Lang, Michael Berryman
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Anthony Michael Hall, Kelly LeBrock, Ilan Mitchell-Smith, Bill Paxton, Suzanne Snyder, Judie Aronson, Robert Downey Jr., Robert Rusler, Vernon Wells, Britt Leach, Barbara Lang, Michael Berryman,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Tom Jung
Artist
Duane Meltzer
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 40 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
850065
Tagline
It's all in the name of science. Weird Science.

This is the American one sheet for Weird Science, the bonkers 1980s comedy from the late, great director John Hughes. Producer Joel Silver bought the rights to a 1950s EC Comics magazine of the same name and Hughes wrote the screenplay himself. Anthony Michael Hall, a regular colaborator with the director (he appeared in Breakfast Club the same year as Weird Science) stars alongside Ilan Mitchell-Smith as Gary and Wyatt, a pair of high-school nerds who are struggling to be accepted by their peers.

One evening the pair decide to try and create their perfect woman, inspired by a viewing of the classic Frankenstein film and using their computer coding skills. Following a series of improbable incidents, including a lightning strike and the pair’s successful hacking into a government mainframe computer (classic 80s nonsense), the gorgeous Lisa (an unforgettable appearance by Kelly LeBrock) steps out of their bathroom and asks “So, what would you little maniacs like to do first?” The rest of the film sees Lisa using various supernatural skills, including memory manipulation and reality warping to help the boys lose their inhibitions and gain the friendship of their school peers. The film features several madcap sequences, including the moment a bunch of psychotic bikers led by Vernon Wells (of Mad Max 2 fame) crash a house party, and Bill Paxton appears in a memorable turn as Wyatt’s brother Chet.

This one sheet was art directed by the American designer and artist Tom Jung who is perhaps most famous for his work on the posters for Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back but has been working on film advertising for over 50 years, as well as storyboarding for a number of films. The artwork (Lisa’s body appears to have been painted, and the title too) was apparently done by an artist and designer called Duane Meltzer who worked at Universal Studios at the time of the film’s release. According to the about page on his official website he also worked as a creative at Twentieth Century Fox studios before forming POV Entertainment Design in 1988. He has continued to work on key art for films, as well as home entertainment packaging and more since then.

Lost Highway / one sheet / international

10.04.15

Poster Poster
Title
Lost Highway
AKA
--
Year of Film
1997
Director
David Lynch
Starring
Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, Balthazar Getty, Robert Loggia, Robert Blake, Jack Nance
Origin of Film
France | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Bill Pullman, Patricia Arquette, Balthazar Getty, Robert Loggia, Robert Blake, Jack Nance,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
International
Year of Poster
1997
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27 1/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the international one sheet for the release of David Lynch‘s mystery thriller Lost Highway. Co-written with American author Barry Gifford, whose novel Lynch adapted for his 1990 film Wild at Heart, the film is a classic Lynchian mind-bender that resolutely defies explanation. The story begins with Bill Pullman as Fred Madison, a Jazz saxophonist who is living with his wife Renee (Patricia Arquette) in Los Angeles. One day the intercom to his flat buzzes and when he answers it an unknown man says “Dick Laurent is dead.” The man is nowhere to be seen when Fred looks out of his window, but a few days later a mysterious tape appears on the Madison’s doorstep. The video features shaky footage outside their flat and over the next few days more tapes appear that eventually move inside and show the pair sleeping, much to their horror.

At a party Fred meets a mysterious man (played by Robert Blake in his final film role) who, in a memorably creepy sequence, tells Fred that he’s at his flat at that moment and proves it by getting him to call his home phone, which the stranger then answers. The next morning another tape appears and Fred is horrified to see it’s footage of him covered in blood with a dismembered Renee next to him. He is arrested, charged with murder and sentenced to death. Whilst on death row Fred sees strange visions and starts to suffer from painful headaches before he inexplicably morphs into another person, a car mechanic called Pete Dayton (Balthazar Getty) much to the confusion of the prison staff. Because Pete has committed no crime, he is released into the care of his parents and, after a period of adjustment, he gets back to his job. The rest of the film sees Pete dealing with the menacing gangster Mr Eddy (a memorable performance by Robert Loggia) and a mysterious blonde called Alice Wakefield (Arquette) who takes him down a dark path which has the mystery man waiting at the end of it.

Lynch and Gifford have always refused to fully explain the story but that hasn’t stopped fans of the film from trying to decode its many mysteries. Check out this IMDb page for some of the theories but the film definitely encourages you to draw your own conclusions after the credits roll. Lost Highway features a number of notable performances, particularly from Pullman and Arquette, as well as multiple cameos from the likes of Richard Pryor, Jack Nance and Marilyn Manson. Filled with memorable Lynchian imagery, including one of the most shocking accidental deaths in cinema history (Michael Massee‘s head meets glass table), it also has a brilliant soundtrack complemented by some of Lynch’s very best sound design.

This poster is very similar to the red style US one sheet but has the yellow blocky type that can be seen on the UK quad. I’m not sure who is responsible for the design of this one sheet or the quad so please get in touch if you have any ideas.

The Passage / quad / UK

06.06.16

Poster Poster

Colourful and typically dynamic artwork by Brian Bysouth features on this UK quad for the largely forgotten British war film The Passage (1979). Based on the novel Perilous Passage by Bruce Nicolaysen (who also wrote the screenplay), the film was directed by the British director J. Lee Thompson who was responsible for the classic war film The Guns of Navarone, as well as multiple films headlined by Charles Bronson.

Set during World War II, the story sees a Basque farmer (played by Anthony Quinn) escort a scientist (James Mason) and his family over the treacherous Pyrenees mountains to escape the sadistic clutches of a Nazi SS officer, Captain Von Berkow (Malcolm McDowell giving an impressively over the top performance). Christopher Lee appears as a character called The Gypsy who is sympathetic to the group’s plight. Apparently the film bombed spectacularly at the US box office and was critically drubbed on release.

This British quad was created at the London-based Downtons Advertising agency by one of the principal designers, Eddie Paul, and painted by Brian Bysouth who was working as a freelancer at the time. Both men are featured in Sim Branaghan’s must-own book British Film Posters: An Illustrated History and are each responsible for several iconic British posters. The designer Eddie Paul was born in Hackney in 1920 and attended Southend School of Art, later beginning his career at Temple Art Studios before moving on to Star Illustrations on Shoe Lane, where he gained a good reputation as a scrapboard artist.

After serving in the RAF during the war, Eddie joined Pulford Publicity in 1946 and started designing film posters using crayons and coloured pencils. He worked on several successful poster campaigns during the 1960s, including El Cid (1961), The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964) and the famous quad for From Russia with Love (painted by Renato Fratini). He later joined four ex-Downton colleagues and formed the successful agency FEREF in 1968. As Sim notes in his book, ‘He was well liked and respected within the business as a gentleman’. Eddie Paul passed away from a heart attack whilst on his way to work in 1984, just shy of his retirement from FEREF.

The artwork was painted by Brian Bysouth who is one of my favourite poster artists and was responsible for many classic posters from the 1960s to the 1980s, including the final painted poster for a James Bond film, The Living Daylights (1987). In 2012 I was fortunate to meet and interview Brian for this site and the article can be read here. The other posters I’ve collected by Brian can be seen by clicking here.

Beastmaster 2 / Thailand

15.07.16

Poster Poster
Title
Beastmaster 2
AKA
Beastmaster 2: Through the Portal of Time (International alt. title)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Sylvio Tabet
Starring
Marc Singer, Kari Wuhrer, Sarah Douglas, Wings Hauser, James Avery, Robert Fieldsteel, Arthur Malet, Robert Z'Dar
Origin of Film
USA | France
Genre(s) of Film
Marc Singer, Kari Wuhrer, Sarah Douglas, Wings Hauser, James Avery, Robert Fieldsteel, Arthur Malet, Robert Z'Dar,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Tongdee Panumas
Size (inches)
25" x 35.5"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

Colourful artwork by the artist Tongdee Panumas on this poster for the Thai release of the belated sequel to the 1982 original, Beastmaster 2. The film was directed by Sylvio Tabet who was the co-producer on the first film. The original screenwriter also returned, although judging by the number of screenwriter credits on the film’s IMDb page it clearly went through multiple re-writes before making it to the screen. The only member of the first film’s cast to return was Marc Singer who plays the titular character, also known as Dar. The plot is described thusly on Wikipedia:

Dar, the Beastmaster, is back and now he has to deal with his half-brother, Arklon (Wings Hauser), and a sorceress named Lyranna (Sarah Douglas) who have escaped to present day Los Angeles. Despite the name, the movie is not about traveling through a time portal, but traveling through a portal to a parallel universe that 1991 Earth exists in. Dar and his animal companions, Ruh, Kodo, Podo and Sharak, must follow them through the portal and stop them from obtaining a neutron bomb. During his visit, Dar meets a rich girl named Jackie Trent (Kari Wuhrer) and they become friends.

The film was roundly panned by critics and largely ignored by audiences on its release. Today it’s considered to be one of the worst sequels ever made. The handful of reviews on IMDb are largely unforgiving, for example:

If you are ever in the mood for a truly terrible film, it would be hard to find something that could even compare to this. I have spent a lot of time watching a lot of terrible movies just for the sheer joy I get from it, and man, this is one of the worst. This movie was so bad, I had to buy the third Beastermaster online. That one wasn’t as bad, which is amazing since it was straight to video.

The ending sounds unintentionally hilarious:

During the closing credits (at least in the version that hit theatres), the Beastmaster can be seen running into the sunset. This sunset is actually a painted backdrop, and after a while, you can clearly discern that the guy is actually running in place for almost two minutes as the credits roll! A perfect end to a perfect movie!

 

Tongdee Panumas (he signs his posters with just his first name) was an incredibly prolific Thai 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.

Note that the line across the centre of the poster is where the original artboards onto which Tongdee paints were joined. Thai artists apparently often struggled to find large enough canvases to paint on.

Mean Streets / quad / 1993 re-release / UK

22.08.16

Poster Poster
Title
Mean Streets
AKA
Mean Streets - Domenica in chiesa, lunedì all'inferno [Sunday in church, Monday in hell] (Italy)
Year of Film
1973
Director
Martin Scorsese
Starring
Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, David Proval, Amy Robinson, Richard Romanus, Cesare Danova, Victor Argo, George Memmoli, Lenny Scaletta, Jeannie Bell, Murray Moston, David Carradine, Robert Carradine
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Robert De Niro, Harvey Keitel, David Proval, Amy Robinson, Richard Romanus, Cesare Danova, Victor Argo, George Memmoli, Lenny Scaletta, Jeannie Bell, Murray Moston, David Carradine, Robert Carradine,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1993
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
30 2/16" x 40"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
"You don't make up for your sins in church. You do it on the streets..."

This is a British quad poster for a 1993 re-release of Martin Scorsese‘s 1973 film Mean Streets. Whilst not the director’s earliest full-length feature, it’s certainly the one that put him firmly on the map ahead of 1976’s global hit Taxi Driver. Co-written by Scorsese, Mean Streets is also a film that is very personal to the director because the film is set in and around the Manhattan neighbourhood he grew up in. The story was shaped by his experience of living in Little Italy and the encounters he had with the various types of characters that live there, including members of the New York Mafia, with whom his father had dealings.

Scorsese also peppered the film with the kind of music he’d been listening to as a youth, which included the likes of the Rolling Stones and The Ronettes. It’s reckoned that half of the film’s budget was spent on clearing these songs for use in the soundtrack, but their inclusion makes for some memorable moments. One such example is the entrance of Joey (Robert De Niro) into the club soundtracked to the Stones’ ‘Jumpin’ Jack Flash’.

Harvey Keitel plays Charlie, a small-time member of the mafia who spends his days collecting protection money on behalf of his uncle, the local boss Giovanni (Cesare Danova). He’s also torn between his feelings of Catholic responsibility, and devotion to the church, with his desire to move up the chain in the outfit. Charlie is also hampered by his friendship with the unhinged Johnny Boy (De Niro), an inveterate gambler who owes money to various unsavoury loan sharks around the neighbourhood. Johnny’s behaviour becomes increasingly erratic and threatens Charlie’s position as a wiseguy and his secret relationship with Johnny’s cousin Teresa (Amy Robinson). As tension rises, the group try to escape to Brooklyn but the neighbourhood has other plans for them.

I’m not totally sure why this film was given a 1993 re-release but it could have had something to do with the success of his 1990 gangster film Goodfellas. It’s also possible that the distributor (Electric Pictures) decided to show the film as part of a particular season of films. Note that all the films mentioned along the bottom of the poster are all based in London so it’s possible it wasn’t a nationwide re-release. The film’s original quad, for the film’s release in the 1970s, is hugely uninspiring (see here) and nothing beats the classic artwork created for the US campaign (see here).

$ / one sheet / style A / USA

15.09.17

Poster Poster
Title
$
AKA
Dollars (Alt. USA title) | The Heist (UK)
Year of Film
1971
Director
Richard Brooks
Starring
Warren Beatty, Goldie Hawn, Gert Fröbe, Robert Webber, Scott Brady, Arthur Brauss, Robert Stiles, Wolfgang Kieling, Bob Herron, Christiane Maybach
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Warren Beatty, Goldie Hawn, Gert Fröbe, Robert Webber, Scott Brady, Arthur Brauss, Robert Stiles, Wolfgang Kieling, Bob Herron, Christiane Maybach,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style A
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1971
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27 2/16" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
71/355
Tagline
This is a moving picture!

A simple design features on this one sheet for the US release of the 1971 crime-caper $ (AKA Dollars AKA The Heist). The film was written and directed by the late American director Richard Brooks who is best known for Blackboard Jungle (1955), Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958) and In Cold Blood (1967). It stars Warren Beatty who was arguably at the height of his career following his appearance in Bonnie and Clyde a few years earlier. He had just finished work on Robert Altman’s McCabe and Mrs Miller which was released the same year as $. The film also marked the third screen appearance of Goldie Hawn and features Goldfinger himself Gert Fröbe. $ is notable for being filmed on location, including in Hamburg, Germany (where it is largely set) as well as in Sweden and San Diego, California.

The film’s plot is described on IMDb:

[$ is a] caper film about crooks robbing crooks, set in Germany where American bank security expert Joe Collins (Beatty) plots with call-girl Dawn Divine (Hawn) to rob three safety deposit boxes from three criminals; a local drug dealer known as the Candy Man, a Las Vegas mobster, and a crooked U.S. Army sergeant. The heist goes off with few complications. But when Candy Man and the Sarge find their money gone and figure out that Dawn (whom they all have gotten to know) is behind it, they team up to try to get their money back.

Despite receiving solid critical notices $ failed to set the box-office alight and was considered something of a flop on release.

This is one of several one sheets printed for the release of the film and some of the others can be seen by checking out this page on emovieposter.com. I’m unsure who was responsible for the design of this particular poster (known as ‘style A’) so if anyone has any ideas please get in touch.

The Thirty-Nine Steps / 1978 / one sheet / UK

03.11.17

Poster Poster

This is the UK one sheet (sometimes referred to as English one sheet) for the 1978 version of The Thirty-Nine Steps, based on the 1915 magazine serial-turned-book of the same name by the Scottish author John Buchan. The story has been turned into a film a number of times, including a 1935 version by Alfred Hitchcock that was later remade in 1959. This version, directed by the late Don Sharp (Psychomania, a couple of Hammer horror films), is considered to be the most faithful to Buchan’s original book. The film is set in the UK in 1914 and focuses on the character of Richard Hannay (whom Buchan would return to for five other novels) who becomes embroiled in a nefarious plot by German sleeper agents to start a war by assassinating a visiting foreign minister. Robert Powell plays Hannay and a host of notable British actors also feature, including John MillsDavid Warner and Eric Porter

The film makes great use of real locations all over the UK, including in Scotland where the bulk of the film takes place. It’s most known for a climactic sequence that occurs on the clock face of London’s Big Ben tower (in reality a large scale model on a set) that aped a sequence from Harold Lloyd’s 1923 film Safety Last. The film was a box-office success and would later spawn a TV series featuring the same character and starring Powell, called simply Hannay.

This poster was designed and illustrated by Vic Fair, who was one the most important designer/artists ever to work on British film marketing. He was responsible for several iconic posters, including The Man Who Fell To Earth, posters for Hammer horrors like Vampire Circus, and the withdrawn advance one sheet for A View to a Kill. I interviewed Vic for this site and that article can be viewed by clicking here. He sadly passed away in early 2017 but his great legacy lives on.

It shares some similarities with another poster Fair designed and illustrated for Rank (the production company and distributor), the 1977 horror anthology The Uncanny.

Note also that there’s another version of this one sheet which has a stylised title logo in the space on the right and can be seen here. I’m not sure why some have it and others don’t but I suspect the one without was a printing error, or a first printing.

To see the other posters I’ve collected that were designed and/or illustrated by Vic Fair click here.

1941 / one sheet / teaser / USA

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
1941
AKA
1941: allarme a Hollywood [Alert/Alarm at Hollywood] (Italy) | The Night the Japs Attacked (USA working title)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Steven Spielberg
Starring
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Teaser
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 41 1/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
WILD BILL WANTS YOU to see "1941" at your local theatre

1941 / one sheet / Style D / USA

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
1941
AKA
1941: allarme a Hollywood [Alert/Alarm at Hollywood] (Italy) | The Night the Japs Attacked (USA working title)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Steven Spielberg
Starring
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style D
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
David McMacken
Size (inches)
27 2/8" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
A comedy spectacular!

1941 / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
1941
AKA
1941: allarme a Hollywood [Alert/Alarm at Hollywood] (Italy) | The Night the Japs Attacked (USA working title)
Year of Film
1979
Director
Steven Spielberg
Starring
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Belushi, Ned Beatty, Dan Aykroyd, John Candy, Lorraine Gary, Murray Hamilton, Toshiro Mifune, Robert Stack, Warren Oates, Tim Matheson, Christopher Lee, Treat Williams, Slim Pickens,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1979
Designer
Unknown
Artist
David McMacken
Size (inches)
20 7/16" x 28 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

2001: A Space Odyssey / B2 / 1978 re-release / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
2001: A Space Odyssey
AKA
Journey Beyond the Stars (USA working title)
Year of Film
1968
Director
Stanley Kubrick
Starring
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain
Origin of Film
UK | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain,
Type of Poster
B2
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1978
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert McCall
Size (inches)
20 5/16" x 28 13/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

2001: A Space Odyssey / quad / 2001 re-release / UK

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
2001: A Space Odyssey
AKA
Journey Beyond the Stars (USA working title)
Year of Film
1968
Director
Stanley Kubrick
Starring
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain
Origin of Film
UK | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
2001
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert McCall
Size (inches)
29 6/8" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
Tagline
still the ultimate trip

2001: A Space Odyssey / one sheet / 2001 re-release / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
2001: A Space Odyssey
AKA
Journey Beyond the Stars (USA working title)
Year of Film
1968
Director
Stanley Kubrick
Starring
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain
Origin of Film
UK | USA
Genre(s) of Film
Keir Dullea, Gary Lockwood, William Sylvester, Daniel Richter, Leonard Rossiter, voice of Douglas Rain,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Re-release
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2001
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert McCall
Size (inches)
27" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
--
Tagline
still the ultimate trip

28 Weeks Later / one sheet / advance / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
28 Weeks Later
AKA
The Slaughter (Germany - DVD title)
Year of Film
2007
Director
Juan Carlos Fresnadillo
Starring
Rose Byrne, Jeremy Renner, Imogen Poots, Mackintosh Muggleton, Harold Perrineau, Robert Carlyle
Origin of Film
UK | Spain
Genre(s) of Film
Rose Byrne, Jeremy Renner, Imogen Poots, Mackintosh Muggleton, Harold Perrineau, Robert Carlyle,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Advance
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
2007
Designer
Intralink Film Graphic Design
Artist
Unknown
Size (inches)
27" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
--
Tagline
--

A Boy And His Dog / one sheet / USA

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
A Boy And His Dog
AKA
Apocalypse 2024 (France) | Mad Don (Denmark) | Un ragazzo, un cane, due inseparabili amici [A boy, a dog, two inseparable friends] (Italy)
Year of Film
1975
Director
L.Q. Jones
Starring
Don Johnson, Susanne Benton, Jason Robards
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Don Johnson, Susanne Benton, Jason Robards,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
artwork
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1975
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Robert Tanenbaum
Size (inches)
27" x 42"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
The year is 2024... a future you'll probably live to see. | An R rated, rather kinky tale of survival

A Nightmare On Elm Street / one sheet / USA

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
A Nightmare On Elm Street
AKA
Nightmare dal profondo della notte [Nightmare from the depths of the night] (Italy)
Year of Film
1984
Director
Wes Craven
Starring
John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Heather Langenkamp, Amanda Wyss, Nick Corri, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Heather Langenkamp, Amanda Wyss, Nick Corri, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1984
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Matthew Joseph Peak
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
If Nancy Doesn't Wake Up Screaming She Won't Wake Up At All...

A Nightmare On Elm Street / quad / UK

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
A Nightmare On Elm Street
AKA
Nightmare dal profondo della notte [Nightmare from the depths of the night] (Italy)
Year of Film
1984
Director
Wes Craven
Starring
John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Heather Langenkamp, Amanda Wyss, Nick Corri, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
John Saxon, Ronee Blakley, Heather Langenkamp, Amanda Wyss, Nick Corri, Johnny Depp, Robert Englund,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1985
Designer
Graham Humphreys
Artist
Graham Humphreys
Size (inches)
30 1/16" x 39 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
Sleep kills

Iconic design and illustration on this UK quad for the film that started the successful Freddy Krueger franchise, featuring artwork by the British designer and artist Graham Humphreys. When I interviewed him about his career in 2011 I asked about the design for the poster and the excerpt from the interview is below:

I wanted to move onto another poster that’s many people’s favourite for the film, and that’s your design for A Nightmare on Elm Street. That was another one for Palace Pictures?
It was shortly after the Evil Dead. I wasn’t commissioned directly, it was through a couple of friends of mine who had set up a design company and they were working with Palace. The company was called Red Ranch. I’d been at college with one of the guys. They got on very well with Palace Pictures and they were given this project. They realised it was going to be an illustration and they were very happy to use me. I was able to do the logo for the poster as well.

Can you talk about the design of the poster?
There was an American flyer for the film that was essentially the street with four tears through it. I saw the film and knew what I was going to do. I’d actually gone along to a screening with my friend, Phil Nutman, who I’ve since given this to [Graham points at the Evil Dead artwork] so I’d already seen it at the cinema before I was given a VHS copy. Anyway, I paused the VHS and took a photograph of Nancy’s face so I could draw that easily.

Freddy [Krueger] himself is actually silhouetted in the background. In the later posters he’s more prominent but on this first quad you don’t see anything, just the shadow and his glove.
I think they wanted the poster to look fairly classy, in comparison to the Evil Dead quad which shows exactly the type of film it is. Obviously the glove became iconic but at the time people had no clue who Freddy was. To me, it was the glove and the whole dreaming thing that was the interesting thing about the film. You’ve got the pretty girl, the glove and the dream-like urban setting, you don’t need the big ugly face leering at you. I hand lettered the title too.

There’s also a second painting which is in portrait format and features Freddy’s other hand reaching down below Nancy’s face.
Yes, I think I prefer this one. This was used for fly posting and was the VHS cover too. For some reason at that time no one would think about the whole different format thing. Everyone was always focusing on quad posters for underground advertising and cinema fronts. The 40×60 inches or bus stop format was very much an American thing, but then when cinema became more commercial we found we had to start doing that size and format.