THE STORY OF THE MAD MAX POSTER AND MEL GIBSON'S MISSING VOICE
Mad Max was the first in a trilogy of gritty action films set in a post-apocalypse world. This cult classic notably launched the career of Mel Gibson, who plays a cop motivated by righteous revenge. Upon its release in 1980, Gibson was unknown in the U.S.—a fact that may explain why the poster artist felt free to obscure his face with futuristic accessories that never appear on screen.
Fearing that the Australian accents would be difficult to understand, Gibson and his costars were dubbed for American audiences, who didn’t hear the original voices for two decades. With the rise of the multiplex and the demise of single screen theaters in the 1980s, theater lobbies were squeezed for advertising space, and as a result, supplemental poster formats like the ‘insert’ above were phased out by mid-decade in favor of the reliable one-sheet.
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