The Miles Davis Movie: Tagline, Or No Tagline?

I love teaser posters. I love movie posters in general (the good ones), but something about the poster before the poster gets me jazzed about an upcoming movie I want to see. It’s an art, for sure, and the better movie posters are able to strike the right balance of visual pizazz and substance – whether it’s over the top, or ever so subtle.

I’ve written ad nauseum about the non-existent movie poster for the Miles Davis Biopic. When the poster does finally hit the web it will be all hands-on deck here at Miles Davis headquarters. For the teaser poster I’ve mentioned that a black background with the words ‘Miles Davis’ written across the middle (in white w/ a cool font) might do the understated trick in signaling the forthcoming movie.

Our friend Julien Trédan-Turini recently mocked-up a rather awesome example of a teaser poster for the biopic; clean, modern and really drives home the anticipation.

Here are few teaser posters I liked after a quick search:

The Dark Knight
Kill Bill Vol. 2
Quantum of Solace
Simpsons Movie

I have suggested a riff on the Miles Davis signature. Or even the image on the cover of the Jack Johnson album.

Perhaps just a shot of the eyes, taken from the famous Anton Corbijn photo. Maybe the name is all that’s required. It’s a name that conjures a variety of images and feelings. That might be enough. We’re assuming the name of the Miles Davis Biopic will be called “Miles Davis,” so perhaps it’s okay to stick with it. Look, the movie wasn’t called “Ray Charles,” just “Ray.” And that worked out fine. In this case, I think you need the “Davis” with the “Miles.”

Much of this has to do with how to sell the movie. Fans of Miles Davis are already going to see it. This is about the demographic that are looking for something entertaining, or are intrigued enough about a legendary figure to buy a ticket. The film is still too early in the development stages to worry about that yet (it’s okay, I’ll worry about it now), but eventually it will be a hot topic in some marketing executive’s office somewhere.

The “Ray” movie poster is effective. I wasn’t able to find any teaser poster, but the official poster sort of goes along with my idea. The tagline on the poster nicely lays out the theme of the movie: “The extraordinary life of Ray Charles. A man who fought harder and went farther that anyone thought possible.”

Maybe this is what the Miles Davis Biopic should utilize – a powerful text that sums of the iconic status of Miles Davis.

I’ll run a few taglines up the flag pole, but if anyone has anything to add please do so. *Disclaimer: In no way do I presume any of my tagline ideas will be any good.

“Cool is Forever”
“It’s About that Time”
“We Want Miles”
“The Man, The Music… The Legend”
(maybe use a series of Miles quotes) “I’m always thinking about creating. My future starts when I wake up every morning . . . Every day I find something creative to do with my life.”


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