Abel Ferrara / Warner Bros.

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Abel Ferrara’s Body Snatchers (1993) is the third film adaption of author Jack Finney’s celebrated and often imitated novel, following Don Siegel’s Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956), and Philip Kaufman’s 1978 version of the same name. This rendition diverts from the original story slightly, set on a military base in Alabama. When a father and his family move to the base to research the effects of military actions on the environment, they realize the occupying soldiers are like drones, devoid of human emotion. After discovering the soldiers are actually clones, being harvested in plant-like pods, the family is forced to repel and escape before becoming pawns of an alien invasion.

While at R/GA New York, Kyle Cooper directed the main title sequence and end credits. The main title sequence pays homage to the titles in Philip Kaufman’s 1978 version, where they trace the alien spores from space, down to Earth. With Body Snatchers, we created the background of space elements on a down shooter animation stand. The title begins as an abstraction, and as the sequence progresses, we see the abstraction is the letters of the title coming together. Once the name has formed, the type is large and lucid. The title design is a typographic pun of sorts, where the type behaves in a metaphorical manner, as if the letterforms are being invaded by the pathogen. Using the animation stand, Cooper and his team interpolated shadowy forms, which land on the letters of the title. The letterforms become tenebrous, and as the sequence continues, these shady versions of the letters overtake the clean type. By the end of the sequence, the bodies of all the letterforms have been overrun by the alien spores.

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TITLE SEQUENCE | TYPOGRAPHY