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From the What If? Files! Unused poster compositions from legendary artist Drew Struzan! Jack Burton! BTTF! Waterworld! & More!

Ahoy, squirts! Quint here. I've long been contemplating a regular series that examines the "almost happened"s of the film industry. From projects (I've collected well over 300 unproduced scripts, everybody from Brian De Palma to Hitchcock) to something as simple as rejected poster designs. In an auction recently I bought some poster comps for some very, very well known '80s movies. I'm fascinated by things like this, so when I was asked to premiere some images from the new book THE ART OF DREW STRUZAN I jumped at the chance.

I was sent this book, which comes out September 14th, and intended to flip through it, but then I looked up and 2 1/2 hours had passed and I read it cover to cover... all of Struzan's notes, the history behind some of his most iconic posters (including Star Wars, The Thing, his Indiana Jones posters, etc) and a look at posters he was hired to create and then went unused by the dumb-asses in marketing. It's a fascinating book because we see a scatter-shot of all his different versions of some very iconic posters and early compositions of now iconic images. Like this Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade one-sheet:

© Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

You know the poster, but that's the original comp that was approved by The Beard and Paramount before becoming this:

In the book there are a ton of other concepts that are pretty rad. Some of the concepts were realized in color, like this Back to the Future one:

© Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

The one sheet they ended up with was brilliant, but I just love seeing the process, the different ideas thrown out. There's one fantastic Back to the Future poster in the book that would have been a killer teaser poster, showing three sets of legs and feet. One's a girl, 1950s dress and heels, another's a guy, 1950s slacks and shoes and in the middle is Marty's jeans and sneakers, with Marty beginning to disappear. Fantastic image! I mentioned earlier that sometimes Struzan was hired and his work never used. That happened on Waterworld... check out his awesome Fire and Water image that he finalized for the poster and tell me the movie might have made a little more money when it was released!

© Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

Great, right? I'll end this run of Struzan images with one of his poster ideas for Big Trouble In Little China. I love the final version of this poster. In fact, I have an original one-sheet framed at the house. I think that final design was the best, but check out this amazing concept piece. You can see pieces from this piece that ended up in the final:

© Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.

Thanks to Titan Books and Mr. Struzan for letting me run these images. Be sure to check out the book next week! If you like the idea of uncovering stuff like this on a regular basis, let me know in the talkbacks or via email. Like I said, the idea is to grab stuff not commonly out there, not always from a published book like Mr. Struzan's. I have some stuff that's never seen the light of day. Also, if you dug this look at Mr. Struzan's work, be sure to pay attention next week. I have a 1:1 interview with the man coming up and I guarantee I'll turn into a blubbering fanboy that likes of which we haven't seen since Chris Farley's interviews. The dude's a legend! -Quint Follow Me On Twitter

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