Highlander was a movie that literally changed my life when I first caught it on TV in the summer of 1999, by finally making me fully aware of a little band called Queen. From the thunderous opening vocals of 'Princes of the Universe', I was hooked. So for the movie's 30th anniversary, I wanted to make something special. I wanted to go full 80s-tyle painted poster, right down to the metallic text styling.
© Davis/Panzer Productions, Studiocanal
This is one of those stupid-clever-or-cleverly-stupid ideas that just took on a life of its own. Originally a TeeFury submission (which did make approval albeit in stripped-down fashion) and expanded into a full poster in the vein of a classic comic cover, with a heaping dose of Jack Kirby in the background. As for why Neil Tyson and Bill Nye are doing their Pulp Fiction impression... Have I mentioned I'm possibly slightly brain-damaged?
Inarritu's gleefully brain-damaged caper in clinging to one's last few shreds of relevance is an easy favorite of 2014, and a further exploration in crafting a full movie poster in limited colors. I wanted to emphasize the jumbled, chaotic mind of the main character, which made the image of Birdman literally hatching from Michael Keaton's head the centerpiece of the design early on. Bringing the rest together took some prolonged brainstorming, so this remained partially-finished for several months before I could confidently continue.
© Fox Searchlight, Regency
Another unexpected source of artistic zeal. Spike Jonze's affecting, thought-provoking, sometimes even disturbing digital romance inspired a social media motif with the supporting cast portraits arranged in a sort of Facebook-style column, with the uniting element being the 'ghosting' of images as on a computer or old television screen. Oh, and that foul-mouthed alien hologram is hanging about the composition too; little twerp couldn't help but butt in. Not only a fun passion project, but also good practice in working with limited colors, in the vein of the Mondo line of posters.
© Warner Bros. Pictures, Annapurna Pictures
Not the sort of film I usually devote art to, but it just had that sort of effect on me - and such is the effect of Olivia Wilde as well. The concept came quite easily; making the four main cast members' likenesses as a set of coasters, then the title logo (complete with a cameo by director Joe Swanberg) as a beer labels. Of the four, Anna Kendrick was the hardest to capture with Jake Johnson (and his epic beard) a distant second, while Olivia was only slightly intimidating, and Ron Livingston came together quite easily. As for the movie, see it for a 90-minute escape from cliche and a very down-to-earth look at romance and friendships.
© Magnolia Pictures, Burn Later, Rise Entertainment, Dark Arts
A high-ranking entry on my top movies on 2012, and the very best modern Bond movie yet. While the poster campaign went very minimalist, I went along similar lines but a touch more ornate. Playing off the sugar-skull emblem used by Javier Bardem's Raoul Silva (and the repeated use of the skull motif in the opening credits) I designed a skull representing James Bond, incorporating common Bond attributes (England, the Aston Martin and Walther PPK) with some from the film itself (the deer statue).
© MGM, Sony Pictures
I had been planning this for the better part of 2012, and finally started putting together at the end of the year. The aim in this was to bridge the aesthetic gap between the original Tron and its 28-years-removed sequel, which wasn't always easy, but was certainly a whole lot of fun. Strangely, the 1982 elements proved far more difficult than the much flashier and modernized 2010 elements.
© Walt Disney Pictures
Immediately following PacLabyrinth, is set to work on a second gaming/Henson mashup, this time combining The Dark Crystal with Donkey Kong...hence, Skeksi Kong. Maybe I was just going for obvious setups (with the Skeksi in place of DK and Garthim in place of rolling barrels), but this one lent itself to the combo a lot better than PacLabyrinth, and I think the game mechanics would be easier to figure out as well. To be featured on TeeFury in 2013.
© Sony Pictures / Jim Henson / ITC Entertainment
Because my mind just goes places like that, it came to me to combine two enduring staples of the 1980s; 8-bit gaming and Jim Henson. In this case, arcade classic Pac-Man meets codpieced David Bowie of Labyrinth fame. Admittedly, I'm not very sure how certain mechanics of such a game would actually work, but if the response to this has been any indication, someone's like to figure it out.
© Sony Pictures / Jim Henson / Lucasfilm
One of my most highly anticipated films of 2012. I had the chance to read the script when it leaked online - which I probably shouldn't have done - but something tells me QT will still have some surprises in store. This wasn't a complicated affair; some recent production photos were released, and one in particular of Jamie Foxx as the titular Django was begging for the poster treatment. So I obliged. True story.
© Columbia Pictures / The Weinstein Company / A Band Apart
It was a tough call between this and Super 8 for my favorite film of 2011, but ultimately Nicolas Winding Refn's stylish and brutal yet quiet and contemplative Drive got the top spot. I tried for something that like the film was artistic yet gritty, so 'dirty graffiti' was the direction I chose; thus began the wonderful trial-and-error of spray paint, chalk smears, and grunge textures.
© Filmdistrict / Bold / Oddlot / MP Productions
Ah yes, the other major DC superhero film I'm dying to see. The film is a way off, but it's never too soon for some fan-made rubbish. While it's been made clear Zack Snyder's film will be its own beast, I designed this with homage to the Richard Donner films in mind, particularly in the choice of tagline, although the Superman shield is the 'new' version (I can't help but think of the old Fleischer Studios cartoons whenever I see Henry Cavill in costume).
© Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Comics
September - November 2011
After the Wizard's First Rule teaser poster, I went to work presenting the principal cast of the 'film' as it appeared in my head. Olivia Wilde was the first in mind upon the character's introduction in the book, and the rest came with time. Wilde and Hemsworth's base images were the easiest to work off of, while Glover and Pitt required a bit of assembly. This also provided a good chance to try a stained-glass effect, which I'd only briefly toyed with before.
© Terry Goodkind
I started in on Goodkind's Sword of Truth series in mid-2011, and the first book Wizard's First Rule quickly shot onto my all-time favorites list. Now nearing the end of the series, I all the more want to see a proper big-screen adaptation (something closer adapted than the show Legend of the Seeker), and I could think of no better teaser image for the starter film than the Sword of Truth itself.
© Terry Goodkind
Almost immediately after finishing the Captain America poster, an idea sprang to mind for a second design, this time based directly on John Mattos' Rocketeer artwork. Illustrator and Photoshop powers combined once again to much better effect, I think. This is just one of those finished works I could stare at all day long if I didn't have to sleep at some point.
© Paramount Pictures, Marvel Comics
Probably my most anticipated superhero film of 2011 (and after X-Men: First Class, quite a hurdle to leap. Inspired by director Joe Johnston's previous WWII-fantasy film The Rocketeer, which famously featured beautiful art-deco teaser artwork by John Mattos, with a hint influence from Mondo Tees' poster designs. Combination of Illustator and Photoshop work.
© Paramount Pictures, Marvel Comics
The timing of this project was pretty spot-on; I put it online right before the official announcement of The Dark Knight Rises' villain cast, and as such it was passed around to a number of movie news outlets in conjunction with the casting news. Typical comments included how real it looked, and dang if that still doesn't tickle me a little bit. The broken glass effect was achieved by scanning pieces of plastic wrap and assembling them in Photoshop.
The Dark Knight Rises, © Warner Bros. Pictures, DC Comics
Daft Punk's score for Tron Legacy was one of the most memorable and innovate film soundtracks of recent memory...just short, apparently of the Reznor and Ross' work on The Social Network, but I digress. This poster got a fair bit of internet attention after its debut on DeviantArt, but alas, once the actual Oscar nominations rolled around, it was again ignored. Hell, it got one nomination, and not even for Best Visual Effects. I watch the ceremony without fail year in, year out, but man, are they smoking something or what?
Tron Legacy, © Walt Disney Pictures
A long-distance contribution to The Daily Show with Jon Stewart's nationwide call for moderation and rationality. Regardless of my presence (or lack thereof) at the rally, I can at least now say I played a part...however small and insignificant. A high-resolution copy is available for download at DeviantArt.
The Daily Show, Rally to Restore Sanity © Comedy Central
So Iron Man 2 rocked the house, and I had a full-on gasm in response to that scene at the end credits. Talk about revving up the hype machine. So I touched up a screen capture of the scene from a pirated YouTube video and put together a nice free teaser poster for director Kenneth Branagh and company. You're welcome, gents. Now give us a trailer.
Thor © Marvel Comics, Paramount Pictures
I loved the ever-living hell out of Avatar, but never felt the film's poster campaign lived up to its insane visuals. Thus, yet another visual love letter to Drew Struzan, and what I believe is my best attempt yet at aping his style. The image is intended for a forthcoming Blu-ray cover, but I decided to produce a full theatrical banner as well.
Avatar © James Cameron, 20th Century Fox
Having finished Book III, I produced a second movie poster collage, this visual love letter to King's series and the work of the great Drew Struzan, whose style I've heavily appropriated here. The cast again features Nathan Fillion as the Gunslinger, with supporting cast including Zoe Saldana, Ray Winstone and Heroes' Milo Ventimiglia. This piece represents roughly a week of digital painting, and I was very pleased with the result.
The Dark Tower © Stephen King
So the word has been out for a while that Keanu Reeves really wants to make a Cowboy Bebop movie. Visionary that I am, I couldn't help putting together something that anime fans might consider a worst-case scenario all-star cast. Offered here are three individual character posters, plus one 'final one-sheet'. And skeptical though I may be about the actual movie, let's face it, I'll be in line day damn one to see it.
Cowboy Bebop © Shinichiro Watanabe, Sunrise Inc.
A 'just for laughs' venture. Bill Watterson would never let a C&H film get made, so stop worrying. And even if a C&H film were producable, I'd rather see it animated (by Pixar or Studio Ghibli) than live-action; but if live-action were the requirement, I'd have Hobbes be animated a la Roger Rabbit instead than CGI'd like Garfield.
Calvin & Hobbes © Bill Watterson
A quasi-non-movie poster, inspired by Kubrick's 2001: A Space Odyssey - which I had recently seen (I don't know what the hell I saw, but I saw it) - namely the image of the monolith and the über-coloful 'stargate' sequence.
Casino Royale kicked ass, Quantum of Solace followed suit. So I'm looking to the inevitable future of Daniel Craig-branded kickassery. 'Risico' was a rumored title for QoS, and is one of the last original Ian Fleming story titles not yet used as a film title. And it just sounds cool to boot.
James Bond © MGM, Eon Productions, Ian Fleming
Because Fox doesn't know how to treat their own properties, Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles was cancelled only two seasons in. I designed this poster in the interest of drumming up support to keep the show on the air. The effort was modestly successful, alas the show will not be back.
Terminator: TSCC © Fox Broadcasting, Warner Brothers
Now that the movie's finally out, I went back and remade my original teaser poster design, fitting it in a bit more with the official poster campaign, and to see how much I'd improved since 2001. Talk about your 'night & day' differences.
Watchmen © Alan Moore, WB/Paramount/Legendary/DC
After my first Street Fighter poster enjoyed (suffered?) a period of infamy as a supposed 'international poster', I decided to tempt fate and do another. I based the splattered/painted style on Daigo Ikeno's character artwork for Street Fighter IV.
Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li © Capcom, Hyde Park Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox
Well, here's a change; a poster for a movie that really does exist! I was one of maybe five guys looking forward to this flick, but was disappointed in the film's almost nonexistent marketing campaign. So, using publicly available production stills, I put together an alternate one-sheet design, something that I think better represents a Street Fighter movie. Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun Li © Capcom, Hyde Park Entertainment, Twentieth Century Fox
As anime goes, this one could translate to live-action far more easily than others in the pipeline, I think. Sam Jackson, Owen Wilson, and Cate Blanchett are a must for the parts of Dutch, Benny, and Balalaika; the other two I'm a little iffy on, but thankfully I've yet to receive any fanboy backlash on this.
Black Lagoon © Rei Hiroe, Madhouse Studios
I had just finished the first volume of Stephen King's 'magnum opus', and decided I needed to render something fitting of the utter coolness of the novel's opening line. The titular gunslinger is played here by Firefly/Serenity alum and proven cinema badass Nathan Fillion.
© Stephen King
This project's had its 'stop's and 'go's for the past couple years, but I have faith it's happening...eventually. Until that day, here's a highly suspect teaser poster that conveniently divulges no cast, crew, or release date.
Halo © Bungie, Microsoft
You know they'll get around to doing another 1984 film eventually. Winston Smith here is portrayed by Paul Bettany, and the face of Big Brother belongs to Powers Boothe, 'cause you know you'll be watching your ass if that BMF was watching it too.
1984 © George Orwell
Nostalgia's apparently been all the rage in Hollywood lately (not including remakes), as old cartoon properties get snatched up by Hollywood left and right. I think this represents some of my better casting choices, as I've received almost universal praise for the casting of Daniel Craig as Race Bannon.
Jonny Quest © Hanna-Barbera
Based on the comic book series by the late great Michael Turner. This is another comic-to-film that was announced years ago and hadn't made any significant headway. James Cameron's Lightstorm Entertainment was producing at the time, so Cameron's own Dark Angel Jessica Alba (before she became overexposed) plays the watery protagonist.
Fathom © Aspen Comics, Michael Turner
A live-action Neon Genesis Evangelion project was announced way back in 2001, and has seen....next to nothing in development at the time of this posting. So with the help of Weta Workshop's conceptual art, I've got their movie poster ready for them, assuming the movie even gets made.
Neon Genesis Evangelion © Studio Gainax, Hideaki Anno
After this project got put on the fast track back in 2001 (only to be shelved several times between then and 2007), I put together this simple teaser of the graphic novel's most famous image. Now that the movie's been made for real, it amazes me how little this poster represents the actual film.
Watchmen © DC Comics, Alan Moore