ZZAP!64 issue 34, 1988 Predator
Roger Kean shivers tasks Oliver to explain the centrefold poster for ZZAP!64 issue 34, 1988 – Predator
‘It was already a pretty violent issue, what with putting Platoon on the cover, and I thought why change the pace for the promised pull-out poster? And given the timing what better than Arnie and his bestie, Predator?’ Oliver tells me with a grin.
‘I always enjoyed the centrefolds. My design was freer since they inevitably had less in the way of logos and strap lines, or at least the logo could be smaller. With a cover, I had to allow for a large magazine logo, which meant always having a blank – or less busy – area at the top left of the picture.’
He also had the incentive of drawing Arnold Schwarzenegger – ‘I got to paint him again on the cover of Sega Force Mega 01 as The Last Action Hero’ (yes, thanks, Oli…) – and a giant head of the Predator, to that point one of the best realised horror creatures since Ridley Scott’s barely seen Alien.
‘My monsters tended to slaver a lot,’ Oli admits with a laugh, ‘but this time I decided to save up the liquid highlights for the swamp water Arnie is rushing through at the bottom of the picture. It adds a dynamic to the composition and Arnie’s search for his prey…or to escape becoming its last victim.’
The film’s building tension is here alluded to in having Arnie apparently unaware of the Predator looming behind him in true pantomime tradition: It’s behind you! The tag line virtually wrote itself, but Oli used his own inimitable ‘Jaggy’ hand font to wrap around the Zzap!64 logo, even to the Activision credit.
‘I like dark and gloomy, and the game of the movie gave me free rein to paint a deep, heavy atmosphere,’ Oli concludes happily.
This article was published in FUSION magazine
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