The posters for Wes Anderson’s latest film Moonrise Kingdom are brilliant. But you probably could have guessed that.
I remember being amazed by the art for The Royal Tenenbaums when it first hit, and whiling away many an hour poring over not only the poster, but the soundtrack album’s sleeve and all the great material that came with the Criterion DVD. Now I take it for granted. If there’s one thing Wes Anderson is good for, it’s design. His films themselves are rich feasts of design in and of themselves, of course. (Some would argue that’s a fault or a weakness – but not me.) And it extends off the screen too. Like few filmmakers (Tarantino is one of the others), and much more like a musician (the Beastie Boys are an an example that’s fresh in my mind) or a quality independent record label (SubPop, Warp), Wes is clearly invested in making sure every single thing, every bit of collateral, associated with his films is thoughtful, special and worth looking at. Nothing is prefab or half-done. Anyone can slap a film still onto a DVD package, but Wes is there to make sure there’s hand lettering and a drawing of the boat in cross-section – if only because the fanboys who think just like he does will go, “That’s awesome.” And it has a way of extending and enhancing the alternate universes he creates within his narratives. (That’s why I’m so psyched about Moonrise Kingdom getting all this attention as the opening film at Cannes this week – it’s like the revenge of the nerds.)
The campaign for Moonrise features more terrific custom lettering (but you knew that). Here’s the French poster:
Even better is the series of character-driven “motion posters” that were released as exclusives to various websites last month. (IndieWIRE compiled them all into one blog post.) If you don’t normally follow links when you’re reading online, do yourself a favor and make an exception this time – I can’t embed these motion posters and they are definitely worth checking out. Click on the stills at the top of each poster to rotate the images and see different quotes from the film. Normally this kind of thing is a really tedious marketing tool for big-budget blockbusters, but leave it to Wes to transform it into something fresh and exciting.
Moonrise Kingdom premieres in Australia at the State Theatre next month as part of Sydney Film Festival. There couldn’t be a better place to check out a Wes Anderson film than the State, with its red velvet, marble and crazy ornate mishmash of art deco, neoclassical and just about every other style dreamed of in 1929. I can’t wait.