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Graphic Design – Vital Elements of Designing Posters for Movies

Graphic Design – Vital Elements of Designing Posters for Movies

Big budget movies carry a very big risk, especially for those who have invested in the making of those movies. Marketing of the movie plays a crucial role in the success of the movie. The promotion posters used to advertise the movie among the mass public are one of the most important elements in the whole marketing process. The poster is the first thing that creates some impression about the movie.

Some of the vital elements for designing movie posters are as follows:

Communicating Image

The Image or Images uses for movie poster design should be able to communicate to the public what the movie is all about. If the movie is about any plot, horror or history the poster should be able to effectively communicate it. It should be able immediately seek attention and interest of anyone who glances the poster. The poster should give a rough idea about what the movie is about.


AIDA stands for Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action. The movie poster designers have been using this formula for designing many movie posters since many years. The first word ‘attention’ is primary and the movie poster should be able to grab the attention of the observers. Flashy graphics and provocative images are usually used for seeking attention but there are other ways too for achieving the milestone.

The second word ‘interest’ is equally important. The observer on looking at the poster should feel that the movie is interesting. The observer should be interested in knowing what the movie is about or what happens in it. One way of developing interest in the poster is through putting up such an image in the poster that raises a number of questions in the mind of the observer. The observer should feel that those questions can be answered only when the movie is seen.

The design of the poster should be such that it develops an intense desire to watch the movie. The poster should appeal equally to the fans and people who know about the actors, directors or producers from the poster.

The movie poster design should call on the observer to act, purchase the ticket and watch the movie. The poster observer should feel that if he/she does not act and watch the movie as early as possible, he/she may be the odd person in his/her group.


If the movie is about something different, the poster design should highlight that uniqueness. Consistency needs to be maintained between the poster design and the movie.


There are many sequel movies being made. These movies are based on the earlier movie. The poster should be designed in such a way that the observer comes to know from the first glance that it is a sequel and a continuation of earlier movie. The major part of the poster exhibits the name of the movie while the remaining part is occupied by the image that is common and prominent in that movie and the movie/s that preceded it in the sequel.