Some of you readers will remember the post I put up a few weeks ago about LACMA’s amazing exhibit that is completely dedicated to legendary director Stanley Kubrick. Within the exhibit is a display featuring some rejected posters for Kubrick’s classic film The Shining and they are absolutely stunning. The entire gallery is phenomenal but this has to be one of the coolest displays at the show. Not only does it show off some lost poster ideas for one of cinemas greatest horror films but each of them have what looks to be Kubrick’s handwritten notes as to the reasoning why they chose not to use any of these prints.

Designer The Fox Is Black had this to say, “One of the coolest parts, especially for a designer like myself, was these sketches by Saul Bass for the film poster of The Shining. Previously I had no idea that Saul Bass had created the original poster (which you can see at the top) so this was a really cool surprise. I’ve read online that Kubrick made Bass go through at least 300 versions of the poster until finally ending on the extremely alien looking version we now know.”

If you want to see the rest of the gallery, you can check it out here: LACMA’s Stanley Kubrick Gallery

Below, I’ve posted the rejected posters along with the famous yellow print that they ended up going with in the end.

Enjoy.

The_Shining_Poster_1_12_14_12

The_Shining_Poster_2_12_14_12

The_Shining_Poster_3_12_14_12

The_Shining_Poster_4_12_14_12

saul-bass-the-shining-film-poster-1

10 comments

  1. Thanks for this post! It’s fascinating. Though, I’m not familiar with the poster they went with. I searched online and only found the one with Jack Nicholson pressing his head through the hole in the door, which isn’t “alien” looking at all. Could you post a link to the actual poster that you referenced?

    1. Thanks for asking Dustin. I’ve posted the original poster that they ended up using in the end and it’s quite similar to the rejected ones. You can see it at the bottom of this post (the yellow one). Thanks for stopping by!

      1. Ah, I missed that. Thanks for pointing it out! I’d love to know Kubrick’s rationale for going with that one, what impression he thought it gave.

      2. You know, I was wondering that EXACT same thing! He definitely had some solid reasons for scrapping the other prints so it would definitely be interesting to find out why he decided to go with the final version.

    1. No doubt! The notes were my favorite part, I love seeing his reasoning behind why he chose not to go with certain designs. The fact that there were supposedly over 300 of these shows how hard he was to please.

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