When the first posters for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood dropped online, they didn’t inspire much confidence for emulating the 1960s glamor that Quentin Tarantino’s film would supposedly capture. Appearing to be lazily Photoshopped images of stars Brad Pitt, Leonardo DiCaprio, and Margot Robbie leaning against a lot of cars, sometimes with the Hollywood sign in the background, those posters quickly became the target of much mockery.
But then a vintage-inspired one-sheet by in-demand poster artist Steven Chorney, an ’80s artist best known for his poster for 1986’s Labyrinth, put all those concerns to bed. Chorney’s vibrant, eye-catching poster would soon prove to be the standard by which the following real and fake posters for Once Upon a Time in Hollywood would be held. And if you’ve seen the film, you may have noticed somet of these Once Upon a Time in Hollywood fake movie posters all featuring DiCaprio’s washed-up actor Rick Dalton.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood Fake Posters
Aside from the beautiful vintage one-sheet, Chorney was also taked with creating the era-specific posters-within-the-film for DiCaprio’s character Rick Dalton, whose onscreen persona and career trajectory Tarantino has previously described as an amalgam of actors like Steve McQueen, George Maharis, Vince Edwards, Edd Byrnes, Ty Hardin and more. Those actors were known for their ruggedly handsome, stoic good looks — a persona that was dying in the face of a changing industry. But back in their heyday, these actors’ faces plastered the posters of TV and movie westerns, all titles that Chorney and other movie poster artists were commissioned to create artwork for. Chorney told Mubi that he had been comissioned to create “a number of artworks to be used within the film itself as ‘prop movie posters,'” and ended up painting about six different posters, including the one for the fictional film Operazione Dyn-o-mite and Nebraska Jim, credited to the real-life spaghetti western director Sergio Corbucci.
Aside from Chorney, Tarantino also enlisted several other famous poster artists, including one that he coaxed out of retirement: legendary Italian poster artist Renato Casaro, known for posters for Conan the Barbarian, Octopussy, Never Say Never Again, and Rambo: First Blood Part II. Casaro created the art for the Uccidimi subito Ringo, Disse il Gringo (Kill Me Now Ringo, Said the Gringo), a poster that seems to deliberately homage his own iconic poster for the spaghetti western They Call Me Trinity.
The last artist was London-based comic book artist Martin Duhovic, whose work Mubi reports was personally requested by Tarantino. Duhovic created the art for the film Tanner, which was featured prominently in Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood is showing in theaters now.
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