One of the great faults of the web is how easily (and widely) misinformation can be spread. Such is the case with Richard Amsel's illustrations, as, time and time again, I see that people mistakenly credit him for other artists' works. It's time to clear the air and shed a little light on those works often incorrectly identified as his...
Artist: Charles Gehm, with revisions by Bill Gold
Even a number of leading movie poster art websites have wrongly credited this one to Amsel; its style certainly evokes the late artist's work.
Artist: Jim Pearsall
Amsel did create an alternate design used abroad, but not the domestic USA poster. This frequently results in many miscrediting this work.
THE LAST PICTURE SHOW
Amsel is often mistakenly credited for this minimalist design.
THE LONG GOODBYE
Another case where Amsel did a poster for a film, but people confuse his work with someone else's. I can't identify the artist who painted this illustration, but I can confirm with certainty that it was not Amsel.
THE SEVEN-PER-CENT SOLUTION
Artist: Drew Struzan
Compare Richard Amsel's original illustration, which was rejected by the studio, to the one used in the final poster, done by artist Drew Struzan, there's no denying an uncanny similarity. Call it a possible case of two great minds thinking alike? Or perhaps given the same directives and references by the film's marketing director? Who knows...
Needless to say, these are both great posters, done by two of the greatest movie poster artists of their time!
Though I don't know who created this poster, this is NOT Richard Amsel's work, though it certainly evokes the artist's style during that period. That Amsel did a poster for Polanski's CHINATOWN might lead one to surmise his creating another illustration for the director...but alas.
VOYAGE OF THE DAMNED
Though Amsel did create a poster for this film, the poster above is not it. I'm not sure who the artist was -- perhaps John Solie, John Berkey, or C.W. Taylor?
The montage of actors' faces at the bottom were lifted from Amsel's original poster, however.
With all the covers Richard Amsel did for TV GUIDE over the years, one would think the publication would give him a fitting tribute in their celebratory issue, TV GUIDE MAGAZINE BEST COVERS - VOLUME 1. But alas, they had a little screwup...
The good news: Amsel was mentioned in the issue. The bad news: the one "Amsel" cover they featured was actually done by another artist!
The cover, featuring Angela Landsbury in MURDER, SHE WROTE, was illustrated by David Wesley Jarvis -- a contemporary of Amsel's who even has the Landsbury illustration featured on his web page! If VOLUME 2 should come to pass, here's hoping the magazine editors do a little more homework. I already took the liberty of notifying them of the mistake through their website. (Alas, to no reply.)
Mea culpa -- for even I can be easily fooled. Some works on this website that I previously attributed to Richard Amsel were NOT done by Amsel. I'm doing further research into images from Amsel's early years -- a period that can be quite difficult to collect work from, and identify as his when a signature is not easily visible.
Book cover for Crazy Sundays: F. Scott Fitzgerald in Hollywood by Aaron Latham. While Amsel did a cover for Pocket Books' paperback edition, I believe this version, by another artist, was for Viking's 1971 edition.
Another challenge is verifying what work is actually Amsel's, particularly when the only available pictures are of very poor quality. Consider this image of an alternate hardcover edition of POPCORN VENUS that someone claimed has an Amsel cover. While it resembles Amsel's early style, I can not verify its authorship.
This paperback edition of POPCORN VENUS was done by ANN MEISEL, a contemporary of Amsel's who also did art for TV GUIDE.
This paperback edition of MOVIE COMEDY TEAMS was, I suspect, also done by ANN MEISEL.