Now deciding on a poster was hard work. The major lesson learned that for consistency and efficiency, we should’ve developed the lay out (or branding) of Over Lunch way before hand: fonts, colors, size and overall look. We didn’t, which made the whole poster ordeal a bit tougher.
The poster was an intensive collaborative process that is usually in the hands of the distributors, but in our case, it wasn’t. The Over Lunch Creators, Producer and Graphic Designer sat together to talk about the official Over Lunch poster and what it should convey, who it should target and how to find the balance between all the elements we thought the poster needed (or didn’t need).
We all had seemingly different style preferences and ideas but we finally agreed on some key elements: simplicity, relationship, the city of Munich, being lost and of course since the movie basically happens over lunch, we needed to include that comedic aspect of it in it…somehow.
We looked at over 100 film poster (thanks to Imdb). We sorted out what we liked and didn’t like. What we thought was in line with our own film. We needed references. We made comments and sent it over to the graphic designer. Then we got a few sketches back. We were immediately drawn to a poster that had no Sophie and Ludwig on it. We loved the concept and the simplicity of it. We sent it out to our list of opinion givers we trust and as a result, we realized that what that poster conveyed to us was very different from what it said to others. Our opinion givers have no mercy. That’s why we trust them.
Amara, Chris and I were, admittedly, a bit disappointed that nobody saw the poster as we did, but it was a great eye opener. So we went with another choice, sent it out and the feedback was positive. Our sellable points were now evident and the poster was much clearer.
So two lessons learned: 1) work on your film’s (brand) look before you are even done with editing. 2) Do take time to do some field study before you put things out there. Have a very mixed list of people whom you can trust, from different countries if possible – depending on the markets you are targeting, different age range, not necessarily in the film business, but a few in some related business like TV, Commercial, Add agencies, etc, and make sure they are objective people, family and friends can be very subjective. If you want to include them, make sure they are good at giving criticism. Send them your poster before you actually settle on it. It’s like test screening. Sometimes you are so in your own project that you can’t think like someone who has never seen it before. This can be very valuable.
Here is the final product of a lot of back and forth, let’s try this, let’s try that, time is running out, help, okay, field study, negative feedback, breath, again, tick-tock-tick-tock, positive feedback, logos, printers, Go!
Ps: now we have to go back and redo our Website. Where are you amazing web designer???