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The Criterion Collection : La Cage Aux Folles

Well I nearly fell off my chair when I received an email from art director Eric Skillman from The Criterion Collection, asking if I’d be interested in creating artwork for their release of  Edouard Molinaro’s 1978 film, “La Cage Aux Folles”!

I’d never actually seen the film. As a young, queer, rep cinema-obsessed film snob, I was suspicious on 2 counts – first, that the film was surely a straight person’s idea of ‘gayness’, second, that anything so popular must be bad or wrong in some fundamental way.

Upon viewing the film in preparation for the job, I was delighted to be proven so wrong! “La Cage” is a very funny, sweet-natured, old-fashioned farce, whose lovably limp-wristed  leads remind me of many characters I’ve known in real life.

When I first started exploring the world of The Criterion Collection, I must admit I was a little unconvinced about the idea of getting present day illustrators to illuminate these venerable classics. After all, there is so much great, great artwork from the past that’s already out there. The more I looked at what Eric was doing though, I began to get it. These are beautiful packages for DVD and Blu-ray, dusted off and re-thought specifically for a modern audience.

Having said that, I still felt I wanted to allude to the iconic 1978 poster art. So I mimicked the lightbulb typeface from the original along with the white background of Lou Myers’ cartoon.

This was such great fun to work on! Thanks so much to Eric and all the folks at Criterion for thinking of me for this delicious project!