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Oliver Twist

Design a Poster

Design a Poster graphic - illustration of main characters in profile

The poster campaign is the primary medium for advertising a film and will generally start in the early stages of a film's production and continue during the weeks building up to the release.

The poster image is the basis of the whole publicity campaign and out of this 'Key Art' or central image come the cinema trailers, cardboard standees for cinema foyers, ranges of posters and television adverts.

Artwork for a film poster can either be an original painting based on a key idea in the film, or it can be produced from the colour transparencies which are taken during the shoot. The aim in both cases is to find a 'narrative image' that sums up the film and gives audiences an idea as to the genre of the film and perhaps the storyline. The poster will need to show various elements from the film which might include the title, tag line, star's name, director's name and any additional information which might attract an audience.

Compare poster designs three and four that have been produced for the film of Oliver Twist and answer the following questions:

The poster artwork can be found at: www.movieweb.com/movies/film(posters 3 and 4)

  1. Why do you think the marketing team decided that it was necessary to produce two different designs?
  2. What impression of the film does each design give you? Which design gives you more information about the film? Which poster would make you more likely to see the film? Which is more eye-catching? Which is more emotionally involving? Which do you think would stay in your mind longest, and why?
  3. Look on the film's website - where else is the 'silhouette' design used? Why do you think this is?

In making a film poster, a film's marketing team have to consider many different things.

  • Who is their target audience (who should the poster aim to attract)? Male or female? Of what age? What will attract these people?
  • How can the poster stand out in a crowded environment (eg in a cinema foyer)?
  • Most posters are only seen/ looked at for around 3 seconds. How can the poster a) make the viewer look for longer and b) give an impression of the film in that short time?
  • How are they going to create a memorable image?
  • How can they include all the relevant information (film name, stars’ names, director) without cluttering the image?
  • What 'tag line' best sums up the film?
    Bearing all these things in mind, it is now your turn to design your own film poster for Oliver Twist.

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