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‘Snake’s Alive!’ John Carpenter posters reimagined

British illustrator Matt Ferguson talks us through his striking new posters for reissued classics by ’80s genre-movie master John Carpenter

By Tom Huddleston
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Connor Swindells as Adam Watson in ‘VS.’

Escape from New York

Carpenter’s post-apocalyptic classic introduced audiences to Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell), the eyepatched anti-hero whose hard-bitten approach would influence everyone from Stallone to Statham. ‘I had to have Snake on the poster,’ Ferguson says. ‘But I also wanted the map – that way you know it’s going to be a prison film, but with the cool ’80s graphics it’s a little bit sci-fi too.’

Connor Swindells as Adam Watson in ‘VS.’

The Fog
John Carpenter followed up his 1978 hit, ‘Halloween’, with a traditional ghost story centred on a small California town as a mysterious mist rolls in. Ferguson’s poster reflects the film’s foreboding mood. ‘Carpenter’s films are minimalist,’ he says. ‘He’s always said he’s not interested in hidden depths, just in good films. That’s what I tried to do with the posters.’

Connor Swindells as Adam Watson in ‘VS.’

They Live
A satire on the Reagan era, Roddy Piper’s homeless drifter discovers that the world is being controlled by aliens who keep the human population enslaved. ‘There’s a lot more going on here than in some of his other films,’ Ferguson says. ‘But it’s also a great B-movie; it’s got quips and fights and guns. It’s a really underrated film.’

‘The Fog’ is at the LFF on Mon Oct 15 and Oct 20. Catch 4K restorations of ‘The Fog’, ‘Escape from New York’ and ‘They Live’ in cinemas this month.

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