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Saigon / quad / UK

28.03.12

Poster Poster
Title
Saigon
AKA
Off Limits (original title)
Year of Film
1988
Director
Christopher Crowe
Starring
Willem Dafoe, Gregory Hines, Fred Ward, Amanda Pays, Kay Tong Lim, Scott Glenn, David Alan Grier, Keith David, Raymond O'Connor, Richard Brooks
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Willem Dafoe, Gregory Hines, Fred Ward, Amanda Pays, Kay Tong Lim, Scott Glenn, David Alan Grier, Keith David, Raymond O'Connor, Richard Brooks,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1988
Designer
Brian Bysouth
Artist
Brian Bysouth
Size (inches)
30 1/16" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
They're the only law and order on the streets.

Artwork by Brian Bysouth on this quad for the UK release of Saigon, which is also known as Off Limits in the USA. As the international title suggests, the film is set during the Vietnam war and sees two military policemen played by Willem Dafoe and Gregory Hines investigating the deaths of several prostitutes in Saigon’s red light district. It soon becomes clear that the prime suspect is a high-ranking US Army officer and that the two cops are in for more than they bargained for.

Despite a strong supporting cast, including Scott GlennKeith David and Fred Ward, the film appears to have failed to make much of a box-office or critical impact. It certainly saw none of the success of Dafoe’s previous Vietnam-based film, the oscar-winning Platoon. The film features some brilliantly odd character names, such as Buck McGriff (Dafoe) and Albaby Perkins (Hines).

Bysouth’s artwork has similar star portraits to the ones seen on the US one sheet, but the street scene and other characters are unique to the quad. In 2012 I met and interviewed the artist and the resulting article can be read here.

To see the other posters I’ve collected by the artist click here.

The trailer for the film can be seen on YouTube.

The Challenge / one sheet / USA

20.03.15

Poster Poster
Title
The Challenge
AKA
Sword of the Ninja (US alt. title)
Year of Film
1982
Director
John Frankenheimer
Starring
Scott Glenn, Toshirô Mifune, Donna Kei Benz, Atsuo Nakamura, Calvin Jung, Clyde Kusatsu, Sab Shimono, Kiyoaki Nagai
Origin of Film
USA | Japan
Genre(s) of Film
Scott Glenn, Toshirô Mifune, Donna Kei Benz, Atsuo Nakamura, Calvin Jung, Clyde Kusatsu, Sab Shimono, Kiyoaki Nagai,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1982
Designer
Unknown
Artist
C.W. Taylor
Size (inches)
27" x 41"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
820127
Tagline
He has trained every thought, every muscle, every nerve, for this moment of truth. | One American against all odds.

Directed by John Frankenheimer (The Manchurian Candidate, Seconds) The Challenge is a 1982 action film that was an American/Japanese co-production and is largely set in the latter country. Scott Glenn stars as Rick Murphy, a down-and-out boxer who is hired to transport an ancient sword (one of a pair called ‘The Equals’) that had been stolen during WWII back into Japan and into the hands of a Hideo (Atsuo Nakamura), a member of the Yoshida family. On arrival in Japan, Murphy discovers that the sword is a fake and he’s inadvertently landed himself in the middle of a feud between the ruthless businessman Hideo and his more traditional Samurai brother Toru (Toshirô Mifune).

At first Murphy sides with Hideo and attempts to steal the real sword from Toru, but he soon realises which man is more honorable and eventually asks Toru to train him in swordsmanship and the ways of the samurai. Eventually he strikes up a relationship with Toru’s daughter Akiko but Hideo still wants the sword and will stop at nothing to steal it. Murphy must team up with Toru and his daughter and put his training to the test.

The film’s martial arts choreography was organised by non other than Steven Seagal six years before his own career in front of the camera began. The film was later released in the US in a cut-down form as Sword of the Ninja. Despite being something of a box-office and critical success The Challenge has never been released on DVD and is frustratinly hard to see at the moment. Fingers crossed for a HD release sometime in the future.

The artwork on this one sheet is by an American artist called C. Winston Taylor, about whom very little can be found online. The Lost Video Archive blog has a post on the artist that features images of some of his other posters and video covers. In the 1990s the artist was hired to paint the covers for a Quantum Leap comic book series and a gallery of those images can be viewed on this site, which also features three images of the artist himself. Comicbookdb.com features a small profile of Taylor with the following mini-biography:

C. Winston Taylor always knew from a young age that he would communicate through his drawings. Fighting in the jungles of Vietnam, where he earned two Bronze Stars, helped solidify this vision. After graduating with honors from the Art Center College of Design, in Los Angeles, he quickly became a well-respected illustrator. His work has received numerous awards and he served as the president of The Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles. 

The other posters I’ve collected with artwork by C.W. Taylor can be seen by clicking here.

Apocalypse Now Redux / B1 / Japan

04.09.14

Poster Poster

This is the Japanese B1 poster for the 2001 re-release of arguably the best war film ever made, Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now. This release, known as ‘Redux’ was a new version prepared by the director and his editor and long-time collaborator Walter Murch that saw almost 50 minutes inserted back into the film with several sequences extended and the flow of the film altered as a result. Set during America’s war in Vietnam, the film follows Martin Sheen‘s US Army Army and special forces veteran Benjamin Willard as he journeys up the dangerous Nung River and deeper into the jungle in the search of the rogue Special Forces Colonel Walter E. Kurtz (Marlon Brando in an unforgettable role). Willard is told that an insane Kurtz has gathered together an army of indigenous fighters inside neutral Cambodia and that he must ‘terminate with extreme prejudice’. After landing at the mouth of the river in a spectacular sequence in which Colonel Kilgore (Robert Duvall) first attacks an enemy village from helicopters whilst blasting Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries from loudspeakers, then orders some of his men to surf despite the fact that mortar shells continue to land all around them, Willard  joins the crew of a Navy PBR boat that transports him on his fateful journey up river.

Apocalypse Now is famous for its fraught production in which the shoot went over time and over budget, sets were destroyed by storms, Martin Sheen suffered a heart attack and other woes that caused Coppola to famously say, “We had access to too much money, too much equipment, and little by little we went insane”, and “My film is not about Vietnam, it is Vietnam”. The director’s wife Eleanor helped to put together the acclaimed documentary of the troubled production called Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse, which is an essential watch for fans of the film. Despite the production woes, the film was a huge critical and commercial success, with its cultural impact undeniable.

The Redux version, which involved re-recording several of the original actors’ dialogue 30 years since the original filming, plus the addition of newly recorded music, was met with generally positive reviews. Many critics felt that the revisions made the film an even richer, stranger experience, whilst some felt that the new cut was self-indulgent and that the new sequences, particularly one set in a French plantation, slowed the film down too much. Check out this wikipedia article for details of the changes. I personally prefer the original cut but the new additions are undoubtedly interesting to watch.

The Japanese title on this poster is made from a photographic image of burning wood and the explosion and helicopters are taken from the now iconic ‘Charlie don’t surf’ sequence.

 

The Bourne Ultimatum / one sheet / Limited Edition / UK

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Bourne Ultimatum
AKA
--
Year of Film
2007
Director
Paul Greengrass
Starring
Matt Damon, Julia Stiles, David Strathairn, Joan Allen, Paddy Considine, Albert Finney, Scott Glenn, Colin Stinton, Joey Ansah, Edgar Ramirez
Origin of Film
USA | Germany
Genre(s) of Film
Matt Damon, Julia Stiles, David Strathairn, Joan Allen, Paddy Considine, Albert Finney, Scott Glenn, Colin Stinton, Joey Ansah, Edgar Ramirez,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Limited Edition
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
2007
Designer
Empire Design
Artist
--
Size (inches)
26 7/8" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
--
Tagline
Remember everything. Forgive nothing.

Apocalypse Now / Thailand

23.09.15

Poster Poster

This is the very scarce original 2-sheet poster for the Thai release of arguably the best war film ever made, Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now.  Set during America’s war in Vietnam, the film follows Martin Sheen’s US Army Army and special forces veteran Benjamin Willard as he journeys up the dangerous Nung River and deeper into the jungle in the search of the rogue Special Forces Colonel Walter E. Kurtz (Marlon Brando in an unforgettable role). Willard is told that an insane Kurtz has gathered together an army of indigenous fighters inside neutral Cambodia and that he must ‘terminate with extreme prejudice’. After landing at the mouth of the river in a spectacular sequence in which Colonel Kilgore (Robert Duvall) first attacks an enemy village from helicopters whilst blasting Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries from loudspeakers, then orders some of his men to surf despite the fact that mortar shells continue to land all around them, Willard  joins the crew of a Navy PBR boat that transports him on his fateful journey up river.

Apocalypse Now is famous for its fraught production in which the shoot went over time and over budget, sets were destroyed by storms, Martin Sheen suffered a heart attack and other woes that caused Coppola to famously say, “We had access to too much money, too much equipment, and little by little we went insane”, and “My film is not about Vietnam, it is Vietnam”. The director’s wife Eleanor helped to put together the acclaimed documentary of the troubled production called Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse, which is an essential watch for fans of the film. Despite the production woes, the film was a huge critical and commercial success, with its cultural impact undeniable.

The film had several interesting posters printed for its release, including the great Bob Peak artwork used around the world, but this Thai 2-sheet is up there, in my mind, as one of the best posters ever painted, full stop. The amount of detail, use of colour and expertly arranged montage all add up to a visual feast of a design and I find some new detail every time I look at it. I’ve added 70 photos for you to really get a sense of the poster.

This poster was painted by the artist Tongdee Panumas (he signs his posters with just his first name) who was an incredibly prolific Thai film poster artist during the 70s, 80s and 90s but I’ve been unable to find out much about him, other than that he was born in 1947. If anyone has any more information please get in touch.

The two sides of the poster were printed separately and then joined together once they were displayed at cinemas. I tried my best to join them together with Photoshop but it’s not that easy to get them to match. Photos 2 and 3 show the two halves separately. It’s interesting to note that Tongdee actually painted the original art on two canvases as can be seen on this photograph showing him and the British collector Neil Pettigrew that was published in issue 168 of Dark Side magazine. This means that getting a totally seamless join between the two halves is impossible.

Note that there was a reprint made of this poster several years ago where someone in Thailand scanned the poster when the two halves were joined together and then printed it as a single sheet poster at the standard Thai film poster size of around 21″ x 31″. These have sometimes been sold as ‘commercial posters’ but are nothing more than unauthorised fakes and should be avoided at all costs. Permission was not sought from the distributor or the artist to make these copies and their sale should not be supported.

Apocalypse Now / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

Silverado / B2 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster

The Silence of the Lambs / Thailand

15.04.16

Poster Poster
Title
The Silence Of The Lambs
AKA
Il silenzio degli innocenti [The silence of the innocents] (Italy)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Jonathan Demme
Starring
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier,
Type of Poster
Thai
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Thailand
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
Unknown
Artist
Tongdee Panumas
Size (inches)
23 15/16 x 34 14/16"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

This is the original Thai poster for the release of the unforgettable thriller The Silence of the Lambs, a film that would win multiple awards across the globe following its release in 1991. Based on the novel of the same name by Thomas Harris which was the second to feature the character of Dr. Hannibal Lecter, a sociopathic serial killer who was the focus of several of his novels (in fact all but one) and featured in multiple films and a TV series since his first appearance in the novel Red Dragon (later released as the 1986 film Manhunter). The Silence of the Lambs was directed by Jonathan Demme and based on a screenplay by Ted Tally who would later adapt Harris again with another version of Red Dragon in 2002.

Jodie Foster gives a deservedly award-winning performance as the young FBI recruit Clarice Starling who excels during her training and is given the task of interviewing the incarcerated Lecter (a mesmerising, against-type performance by Anthony Hopkins). The Bureau wants to see if Lecter can help them in their hunt for another serial killer, dubbed Buffalo Bill, who is on the loose and has been skinning the corpses of his female victims. Lecter decides to toy with Clarice and she must work to gain his trust, whilst the audience are shown Bill picking up his next victim. The tension rises as Clarice closes in on the killer through clues given by Lecter and the stage is set for a nerve-shredding finale. The film won the ‘big five’ at the 1991 Academy Awards, including Best Actor and Best Actress for Hopkins and Foster, as well as Best Film, Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay for Tally. It would prove to be a huge hit across the globe and enter the cultural lexicon in a significant way. The character of Lecter continues to fascinate and a recent TV series (called simply Hannibal) was a cult success.

This Thai poster features excellent artwork by Tongdee Panumas (he signs his posters with just his first name) who 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.

The faces of Foster and Hopkins of course feature on the classic American posters, including the Style C one sheet which merges the two, although this is more like the UK quad. At first glance I thought that Tongdee had painted the montage at the bottom over a reproduction of the photographic originals but on closer inspection it’s clear that he repainted the whole lot, including the intricate details on the infamous Deaths Head moths (featuring the freaky ‘skull’ image). The montage below is unique to this poster and features four depictions of Lecter at various points in the film.

The Silence Of The Lambs / quad / UK

18.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Silence Of The Lambs
AKA
Il silenzio degli innocenti [The silence of the innocents] (Italy)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Jonathan Demme
Starring
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier,
Type of Poster
Quad
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
UK
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
Marcus Silversides
Artist
--
Size (inches)
30" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
Tagline
Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Brilliant. Cunning. Psychotic. In his mind lies the clue to a ruthless killer. - Clarice Starling, FBI. Brilliant. Vulnerable. Alone. She must trust him to stop the killer.

Apocalypse Now / one sheet / USA

12.08.13

Poster Poster

A classic painting by the late, great Bob Peak on this one sheet for the release of arguably the best war film ever made, Francis Ford Coppola’s Apocalypse Now. Set during America’s war in Vietnam, the film follows Martin Sheen‘s US Army Army and special forces veteran Benjamin Willard as he journeys up the dangerous Nung River and deeper into the jungle in the search of the rogue Special Forces Colonel Walter E. Kurtz (Marlon Brando in an unforgettable role). Willard is told that an insane Kurtz has gathered together an army of indigenous fighters inside neutral Cambodia and that he must ‘terminate with extreme prejudice’. After landing at the mouth of the river in a spectacular sequence in which Colonel Kilgore (Robert Duvall) first attacks an enemy village from helicopters whilst blasting Wagner’s Ride of the Valkyries from loudspeakers, then orders some of his men to surf despite the fact that mortar shells continue to land all around them, Willard  joins the crew of a Navy PBR boat that transports him on his fateful journey up river.

Apocalypse Now is famous for its fraught production in which the shoot went over time and over budget, sets were destroyed by storms, Martin Sheen suffered a heart attack and other woes that caused Coppola to famously say, “We had access to too much money, too much equipment, and little by little we went insane”, and “My film is not about Vietnam, it is Vietnam”. The director’s wife Eleanor helped to put together the acclaimed documentary of the troubled production called Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker’s Apocalypse, which is an essential watch for fans of the film. Despite the production woes, the film was a huge critical and commercial success, with its cultural impact undeniable.

Master movie poster artist Bob Peak was asked to create a series of paintings to sell the film and he worked in conjunction with art directors Murray Smith and Don Smolen from the boutique poster agency Smolen, Smith and Connolly, based in New York City. Two of Peak’s paintings were used in North America, with an image of the Nung River on the teaser poster and then this superb portrait of Brando as Kurtz with a menacing looking Sheen behind him was the final poster. Both of those images were used around the world to sell the film. German cinemas also saw this stunning image of Kurtz that was painted by Peak and used exclusively in that country.

Bob Peak was born in 1927 in Denver, Colorado and grew up in Wichita, Kansas before heading off to serve in the military during the Korean War. Upon his return Peak enrolled in the Los Angeles-based Art Center College of Design where he began to hone his craft as an artist, moving to New York after graduation where he began his career as a commercial illustrator, first working on a campaign for Old Hickory Whiskey. For the next few years the artist worked on a string of successful advertising campaigns, magazine editorials and more, but it was when United Artists hired Peak to work on their campaign for the release of West Side Story in 1961 that he began what would prove to be a fruitful and almost unrivalled career in film poster creation.

Peak’s immediately recognisable style was soon much in demand and his painting appeared on posters for films such as My Fair Lady (1964) and Camelot (1967), but it was his work in the area of sci-fi and fantasy for which Peak is perhaps best known, with the iconic design for the first Superman film (1978), the classic image he created for Rollerball (1975) and the colourful poster for Star Trek: The Motion Picture (1979), amongst several classics of the genre he was responsible for. His paintings for Apocalypse Now, however, arguably saw the artist working at the top of his game and in the recently published must-own book The Art of Bob Peak (put together by one of his sons), he is quoted as saying, “Of all my movie work, it is my work on Apocalypse Now that I am most proud of.”

To see the other posters in the Film on Paper collection that were painted by Bob Peak click here.

The Silence Of The Lambs / one sheet / style D / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Silence Of The Lambs
AKA
Il silenzio degli innocenti [The silence of the innocents] (Italy)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Jonathan Demme
Starring
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Style D
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
BLT & Associates
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
900086D
Tagline
--

The Right Stuff / B1 / Japan

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Right Stuff
AKA
Uomini veri [Real men] (Italy)
Year of Film
1983
Director
Philip Kaufman
Starring
Fred Ward, Dennis Quaid, Ed Harris, Scott Glenn, Sam Shepard, Barbara Hershey, Lance Henriksen, Veronica Cartwright, Jane Dornacker
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Fred Ward, Dennis Quaid, Ed Harris, Scott Glenn, Sam Shepard, Barbara Hershey, Lance Henriksen, Veronica Cartwright, Jane Dornacker,
Type of Poster
B1
Style of Poster
--
Origin of Poster
Japan
Year of Poster
1984
Designer
Unknown
Artist
--
Size (inches)
28 10/16" x 40.5"
SS or DS
SS
Tagline
--

The Silence Of The Lambs / one sheet / teaser / style B / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Silence Of The Lambs
AKA
Il silenzio degli innocenti [The silence of the innocents] (Italy)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Jonathan Demme
Starring
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Teaser - style B
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
BLT & Associates
Artist
--
Size (inches)
26 7/8" x 40"
SS or DS
DS
NSS #
900086B
Tagline
--

The Silence Of The Lambs / one sheet / teaser / style C / USA

17.05.11

Poster Poster
Title
The Silence Of The Lambs
AKA
Il silenzio degli innocenti [The silence of the innocents] (Italy)
Year of Film
1991
Director
Jonathan Demme
Starring
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier
Origin of Film
USA
Genre(s) of Film
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Scott Glenn, Ted Levine, Anthony Heald, Brooke Smith, Kasi Lemmons, Frankie Faison, Diane Baker, Charles Napier,
Type of Poster
One sheet
Style of Poster
Teaser - Style C
Origin of Poster
USA
Year of Poster
1991
Designer
BLT & Associates
Artist
--
Size (inches)
27" x 39 15/16"
SS or DS
SS
NSS #
900086C
Tagline
Dr. Hannibal Lecter. Brilliant. Cunning. Psychotic. In his mind lies the clue to a ruthless killer. - Clarice Starling, FBI. Brilliant. Vulnerable. Alone. She must trust him to stop the killer.