Monday, November 22, 2010

Evolution of the Modern Movie Poster

Dale from Marketing: Okay folks, we need to sell this movie! You know what we need? A kick-ass movie poster! Get me Simmons from the art department!

Simmons from the Art Department: You asked for me, sir?

Dale: Simmons, we need you to make a poster for a movie. It’s called “Unstoppable,” it’s inspired by true events, and it stars Denzel Washington and Chris Pine.

Simmons: Okay, what’s it about?

Dale: Hell if I know, Simmons. I think there’s a train involved.

Simmons: A train? What’s it doing?

Dale: I don’t know, but whatever it’s doing you can’t stop it. That sounds kind of boring, though. Maybe I could get the director to change it. Maybe instead of an unstoppable train it could be some sort of out-of-control robot with an angle grinder.

Simmons: Angle grinder?

Dale: It could be...I don’t know... grinding to the center of the earth, or something. Either way, make sure this poster clearly represents either an unstoppable train or an unstoppable angle grinder in case I can get Tony Scott to change it to an out-of-control robot with an angle grinder. Get on it, Simmons!


Simmons: Okay, here’s what I came up with:

Dale: Sparks? What the hell is this?

Simmons: Well... train wheels spark when they try to stop, and angle grinders spark when you use them-

Dale: Simmons you idiot! The train is unstoppable! It can’t be stopped, so there won’t be any sparks! And Tony put the kibosh on my out-of-control robot angle grinder idea. They’re sticking with the train, and it turns out that Pine and Washington are crawling all over the train trying to stop it.

Simmons: That sounds pretty cool. I can work with that.

Even later...

Simmons: Okay, here we have Denzel Washington and Chris Pine vs runaway train. 

Dale: Good, good. But there’s something wrong with the train.

Simmons: What?

Dale: It’s just... not scary enough. We really need to raise the stakes with this train.

Simmons: Raise the stakes? I think a runaway diesel engine is a pretty scary prospect.

Dale: You know what’s scarier than a runaway diesel engine? A runaway NUCLEAR engine! Get on it, Simmons!

Simmons: But... they don’t make nuclear train engines!

Dale: Submarines made the jump from diesel to nuclear. Who says trains aren’t heading that way?

Simmons: Is that even in the movie?

Dale: I said get on it, SIMMONS! And throw a helicopter in there while you're at it. Kids love helicopters!

*Simmons sheds a single tear*

Even laterer...

Simmons: Here’s your new poster, sir.

Dale: Good, good. I like the helicopter. Nice use of the movie stills we sent you. I just have one more small improvement.

Simmons: I’m past the point of caring enough to raise an objection, sir. What is it?

Even later than laterer:

Dale: Perfect! Guy jumping onto the train from a helicopter! I'm a genius!

Simmons: *through pained sobs* That doesn’t even happen in the movie!

Dale: Simmons, Simmons, Simmons. That doesn’t matter, does it?

Simmons: I’m paid the same, but my soul is destroyed, so... no?

Dale: That’s the spirit. Hey, we need you to make a poster for the overseas release.

Simmons: *sigh* What do you want on the overseas poster, sir?

Dale: Eh, I don’t care. I’m never going to see it, so just throw together whatever you want and send it over to the overseas distributor.

Simmons: Really?

And thusly:

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