by Ariadna Zierold
John Henry Alvin (November 24, 1948 – February 6, 2008) was one of the most celebrated contemporary American cinematic artists. He illustrated multitude of film posters for American cinema. He is credited for designing posters and key art for over 135 films, beginning with the poster for Mel Brooks’ Blazing Saddles (1974).. Alvin’s trademark style came to known as Alvinesque by his associates and friends.
Sunday newspapers held attraction for young Alvin as it featured movie advertisements which led to his growing interest in movie poster creation. In 1971, he earned his graduate degree from Art Center College of Design in Los Angeles and soon after took up a job as a freelance artist.
Alvin’s work included the movie posters for E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Blade Runner, Gremlins, The Goonies, The Color Purple, The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin and The Lion King. He also created the anniversary posters for Star Wars.