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Minimal film posters: where less is more

A pair of sunglasses and the phrase “Hud Hud” is all it took Shaunak Mukherjee, 23, an advertising student, to create a minimal poster of the 2010 blockbuster, ‘Dabangg’.

mumbai Updated: Mar 12, 2012 01:37 IST
Reetika Subramanian

A pair of sunglasses and the phrase “Hud Hud” is all it took Shaunak Mukherjee, 23, an advertising student, to create a minimal poster of the 2010 blockbuster, ‘Dabangg’.

A minimal movie poster involves the use of simple illustrations of an element from a film. A carton of ‘Suntara’ juice represents the film Delhi Belly’, a girl falling off a terrace symbolises Baazigar and a ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign with ‘Hotel Decent’ written on it, hung from a shut door’s knob, signifies Jab We Met.

“While regular movie posters are created using movie screenshots, photographs of the characters and long taglines, most minimal movie posters follow a simple format: two colours and a dialogue or a symbol,” said Mukherjee, a Vashi resident.

Mukherjee’s version of Dabangg, which neither had images of Salman Khan flexing his muscles nor Sonakshi Sinha battling her eyelashes, has made it to the country’s first minimal movie poster India page launched online in January.

It’s the first web page - http://minimalmoviepostersindia.tumblr.com/ - to include posters of both Bollywood and other Indian regional films.

With more than 60 minimal posters already uploaded, the two-month-old page has received more than 21,000 hits. “The page is also a great platform for budding artists to submit their artworks of films they love,” he added.

For Abhinav Bhatt, 26, a Bengaluru-based software engineer watching ‘Mr India’on a sunny afternoon was enough motivation to start the page.

“It takes skill and experience to trace one element that will be a metaphor for the entire film,” said Bhatt.

“This page is almost like a free portfolio of our artwork. By way of submissions and displaying our work at exhibitions, we are reaching out to famous artists and employers.”

“Last week, I had uploaded a poster of the film, ‘Paan Singh Tomar’, soon after its theatrical release. I received a congratulatory message from the film’s actor, Irrfan Khan, who appreciated the poster and the page,” said Bhatt.

Though the web page receives several submissions of minimal movie posters everyday, Bhatt added, “Most entries are loud and cluttered.”

Last month, the website managers organised an exhibition of the minimal posters in Pune.

The team is planning to host an exhibition in Mumbai and Delhi.