In 1963, the cartoonist/comics artist/humorous illustrator Jack Davis was hired by United Artists to create the poster art for the Stanley Kramer all-star comedy It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World. Jack Davis had drawn several movie posters prior to being hired for MMMMW, but this one was huge, the film becoming a blockbuster, and forever established him as the king of comedy film posters. When Fantagraphics' Gary Groth and I interviewed Jack in 2011 at the Brooklyn Comics festival he confirmed that this was the assignment that forever changed the course of his career, it was the game changer.
|with the great Jack|
Davis in Nov 2011
(photo by Ryan Flanders)
Jack Davis became the go to guy, the most in-demand artist of comedy film posters throughout the sixties and seventies, arguably the most successful and popular film poster artist of all time, and undoubtedly, the master of the chaotic, over- crowded crowd scene. The film has also had an afterlife for Jack Davis. He'd create several variations of the poster over the years, as well as the wraparound art for the LP album, and several other fun spinoffs...
|The original film poster|
another version of the poster
Jack Davis created this later cover piece for the RCA Videodisc release in 1983:
Jonathan Winters who co-starred in the film, had Davis create this cover parody of
his film poster for this 1964 album cover
a decade, made his triumphant return by parodying the very poster he created for this
wraparound MAD paperback
And his most recent images created for the Criterion release:
"It's A Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World" poster art on the cover
thanks to Ed Edo Dennis & Stephen Kroninger