Boy “O” Boy

Posted inMirko Ilic
Thumbnail for Boy "O" Boy
Cops and Mafia
the boob tube

Merchandise such as toys, cups, t-shirts, towels, bed coverings, bags, lunch boxes, pencils and notebooks are financially very important for movies. Therefore the branding of a movie is very important to studios.

But not all movies have cute animated characters or a comics hero to fill that role. They must rely on logos created out of the title of the movie. Sometimes they get lucky when they have the letter ‘o’ in the title. Having two ‘o’s in the title is almost like the Chinese character for ‘double happiness.’ Why the letter ‘o’? It has a hole in the middle and one can put things in it. It works perfectly every time, in every way, by using the outline of the ‘o,’ putting things inside such as eyeballs, faces, people, replacing the letter with round objects, or even with objects that are not even round. For example the heart is used very often despite the fact that it looks more like the letter ‘v’. One just cannot lose by going with the ‘o.’ Remember, it even worked for the President.

quantum of solace
one body too many

We added 60 new images of movie posters to the Flickr collection. There are alltogether 189 images, sometimes using one, sometimes two, and sometimes even three o’s to create the logo / title. Next time we can talk about other letters used in the titles of movie posters.

lady be good
looney tunes
sodom and gomorrah
body and soul
Brooklyn gorilla
the shooting

All images on this page are courtesy of Mirko Ilic, a New York-based graphic designer and illustrator. He co-authored The Design of Dissent, with Milton Glaser, and The Anatomy of Design and Icons of Graphic Design, with Steven Heller. He teaches illustration at the School of Visual Arts.

If you liked thisCheck out more of Mirko’s slideshows:

Ceci N’est Pas Une Roquette: A history of subliminal flying machinesThe Spirit of the Stone Type: A look at comic book type etched in stoneStone Type: A history of movie type etched in stoneThe Story of O: How designers use the letter O as a design motifHoliday Spirits: Pardon me, there’s a lady in my drinkOff With Her Head: What would Henry VIII Do?Why I Became an Artist: Pictures of artists drawing their modelsBooks on Books: Using pictures of books to sell booksBeauty and the Beast: The evolution of a classic poseGeorge W. Bush, Advertising Star: When companies use our president to sell stuff

Got an image to submit? Tell us in the comments.