• Title:
    They Live
  • Client:
    Shout Factory
  • Design:
    DVD / BluRay Cover
  • Date:
  • Region:
Artwork for re-release of They Live, It was an honor to take this one on as I’m a massive John Carpenter Fan and also a huge old Roddy Piper Fan the early wrestling days. I absolutely love They Live, So it was a true labor of love on this juggernaut of social commentary meets sci-fi action…

I wanted to create something in a true 80s keyart style, that was VERY action packed, putting piper in an Italian poster style, testosterone driven almost as god like religious icon, standing aloft like a beacon of social commentary surrounded by the imposing odds of alien oppression
and NOT forgetting Keith David, the mans who survived
The Thing! and a LEGEND in his own right.

So the challenge lay in trying to compact all that in a design and integrate the story-line narrative of the film and not have it as just a mass pile of stuff, which is always the danger
in these, when people do montages. you need a design structure.

For pipers image I wanted this rippling muscle od with the awesome blond streaked mullet flowing (and he is massive in the film!), the guy was a wrestler and that’s where most of his fan base comes from, so i needed to represent the 80s WWF interest) so i thought to hell with it and just rip those shirt sleeves off, i know it doesn’t happen in the film but THAT’S the point.
So completed the image with a total masochistic shooting from the hip stance as he’s striding adversity. Like i said i did want to give this piece a saintly religious iconography vibe… I then didn’t want to cover his eyes with the sunglasses as i felt it removed the emotion, so Keith was given the cool shades to convey that part of the plot.

Colour was the big thing which allowed me to separate out the elements to prevent it all getting too busy. as the alien world is seen in monochrome in the film i wanted to keep true to that but stylise it slightly with a more blueish hue. when it came to the Aliens i wanted to convey a sense of claustrophobia so all the buildings and aliens are leaning inwards like waves about to crash in and drown the
main characters.

For the bottom section i wanted some action which would depict the other side of the world and have the police (which is how they are seen to the average Joe) eviction scene with the church behind (subliminal religious/saint imagery again) its such a pivotal element to the story i had to get it in. Also whenever you see the police they always bathed in a red flare light so that was a great counter balance to the blue up top!

I had to use Albertus font for all the other copy of-course being a classic Carpenter film.