Warner Bros. 1930s movie poster typography
About five years ago the typeface Trajan was used so ubiquitously on movie posters it became known as ‘the movie font.’ Later, when the typeface Gotham was used in Obama’s campaign it became the new go-to font for movie poster designers.
Trajan got relegated to thrillers and horror movies. It became a genre-specific trend/cliché like handwritten fonts for indie comedies. Or Gill sans extra bold for mainstream Hollywood comedies. Or Didoni-style serif for romantic ‘chick flick’ comedy.
This made me curious about the times when there were no typefaces designers could cut and paste in Photoshop. I decided to pick posters from one studio (Warner Bros.) and one decade from Hollywood’s golden age (the 1930s).
I didn’t actually find any trends, but it wasn’t hard to spot what was different back then; without a computer designers were forced to do everything by hand, which resulted in beautiful, unique lettering. And some beautiful posters too (click on the images to see the original posters).