Friday, 18 February 2011

Black Swan

Next is Black Swan. Directed by Darren Aronofsky.

A ballet dancer wins the lead in "Swan Lake" and is perfect for the role of the delicate White Swan - Princess Odette - but slowly loses her mind as she becomes more and more like Odette's evil sister, Odile, the Black Swan. 

Design by: Fox Searchlight Pictures
I have tried to track down more information on the design department at Fox Searchlight but have drawn a blank, if anyone has more info please provide a link.

This poster conforms to the standard studio template; a photo of the star, bottom of third of the poster holds the majority of  the information and enough negative in the image to place, press quotes, nomination info etc, all center aligned to give a clear reading path from the image to the text. The image has been photoshopped to within an inch of it's life as you can see from the original poster which was used for the Venice Film Festival, in fact it no longer looks like Natalie Portman, infact it reminds me a bid of Aladdin Sane. and of course the fantastic Pressburger and Powel masterpiece The Red Shoes.

The film deals with the themes of identity and the struggle for perfection which may explain the changing face of the posters. The design is refined and clean placing the viewers focus firmly on Portman's avine eyes and leading them down to the title which is set in a classic serif reflecting the films ballet setting. This poster is one of a set of three, there seems to be no cohesion of typography switching between a serif and modern sans but they all sit around the idea of 'good vs evil' and feature an image of the star with a loose red, black and white colour palette.

I can't ignore the fact that another set of four 'teaser' posters were produced for this film by London based studio LaBoca. The four posters are stunning, drawing visually on a range of influences from Bauhaus,  Polish posters, Art Deco and even a hint of Nazi propoganda. This feeling of time and place is further underlined by a range of Deco inspired fonts including Brittanic, Acier Bat and Monstra. The restricted colour palette and strong use of illustration make you ask why can't all movie posters be like this but there again these are not encumbered by countless credits, studio logos, billing rights, press quotes etc which is maybe a good thing!

I don't think there is a movie or design blog out there that hasn't featured these posters, but just in case you haven't come across them before here they are again.

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