Weekly Poll: Ponyo Movie Posters

This week's poll question from the Ghibli Blog: which of the Ponyo movie posters is your favorite? Cast your vote on the right column, just below the pics. If this works out, we'll have polls every week on a variety of topics, so vote early and vote often!

Remember, the poll is on the third column to your right, just under the screenshots. You can add your comments here, but be sure to cast your vote over there.

Here is the Japanese Ponyo poster:

Here is the French Ponyo poster:

Here is the American Ponyo poster:

And here is some pie:


asuka said...

i know this will sound horribly snobby and clichéed, but the only one i don't like happens to be the american one.
it just doesn't look like the film. its emptiness has a slick, cool CGI feel to it that has nothing to do with the aesthetic of the movie, imho.

asuka said...

w^ps - i see you've made exactly the same comment in an earlier post that i did about the irrelevant CG look of the american poster.

i hadn't even read the tagline. ouch.
"in a world beyond your imagination..."
just communicates zero.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

oh, that's fine. As long as you voted for one of the posters (or the pie), that's perfectly alright. We're all here to join in spirited discussions. It would do us any good if everybody agreed.

Hmm...I wonder what it means if the pie wins?

Malik Ming said...

I love the first poster the best. So old school, Japanese or otherwise. The composition is fantastic, and the journey from sea to land is clearly communicated.

The American one is just...standard modern Disney. Nothing to excite or stimulate the imagination. Really boring.

That pie does look pretty good. I'll give it a thumbs up.

yupaka said...

I think the American poster is symbolic. Think of the computer-generated waves as the American-CGI-animation world, and Ponyo as the traditional Ghibli--> the poster symbolize Ghibli's entrance to America.

It makes sense (at least to me^^).

yupaka said...

We all are Ghibli fan, but for someone only familiar with poplar animation (Disney, Dreamwork etc) the American poster looks much more attractive, because the hand-drawn Ponyo looks sharply distinctive on the waves.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

Very interesting insights, Yupaka. But can Ponyo in all seriousness be considered an "introduction to America?" This is the fourth Ghibli film to see a theatrical release under the Ghibli-Disney contract. And then we add in all the DVDs, which were released in several waves over a period of years.

This raises one of the big questions, then: why hasn't Studio Ghibli broken big in American movie theaters? Are there any parties to blame? Are there any easy answers? Is success in the United States even possible?

henry said...

I voted French- Gotta love that striking magenta against the aquamarine and navy backdrop.

asuka said...

i voted french too, actually. i like the fact that it's symmetrical but not built around a central iconic character at the focal point. and (not surprisingly, since it's practically a screenshot!) it actually communicates something about the aesthetic of the movie. it has the eye-catching saturated colour of the american poster without its irrelevance.
i also like the japanese poster very much. and the pie.

the idea of "crowdedness" is one people on this blog have pointed to when defending the american poster: it's good because it's spare and iconic. my objection to this is that uncrowdedness is a virtue that doesn't have much to do with the movie. the film is filled with a harmonious busy-ness.

yupaka said...

Though Ponyo is the fourth Ghibli films, Ghibli still needs to be introduced in America.

Let's put it this way: you are someone whose animation experience is limited to Disney and Dreamworlds. You see the wave and expect another Nemo, but, wait, what is this strange 2D creature which looks nothing Nemo-ish, Pixar-ish or Disney-ish? This creature is just plainly weird in the familiar background.

On the contrary, to the general audience, the only thing that catches the eyes in the Japanese poster is Ponyo herself. The background (the sea and ship) is not memorable.

In short, the American one triggers curiosity, while the Japanese one doesn't NEED to do so.

Daniel Thomas MacInnes said...

Yes, it's true that Ghibli needs that extra push to really break through to the next level of acceptance in the States. I think its popularity has been growing in recent years, but it's entirely underground, almost person to person. You share your Totoro DVD with family, and they pass it along, and so on and so on.

Eventually, this will mean a breakthrough at the box office. And I personally believe that Ponyo will be Ghibli's best success in the US to date. If Disney truly does place Ponyo on 700 screens, and are receptive to increasing that number if the returns are good, then we may be looking at a major hit.

yupaka said...

Oh so I'd like to change the tagline (Welcome to a world where anything is possible) to:
Will Ponyo survive
In this CGI world?

Or less pessimistic:
What is Ponyo doing
In this CGI world?

Chris said...

I'm really behind the times here, which means probably no one (but you, Daniel) will see this post:

Anyway, when I first saw the U.S. movie poster I hadn't seen Ponyo and so I thought the poster was fine and more or less attractive to the eye. (I loved the Japanese poster the most, though.)

However, after having watched Ponyo (Magnificent, by the way!) I have to say that the U.S. poster is h-o-r-r-i-b-l-e! It captures none of the magic and wonderment of the film. And everyone is right, the CGI waves are absolutely mis-leading to the audience. I've never seen a more anti-CGI movie in this modern age of filmmaking than Ponyo. This poster doesn't capture 1/100th of the visceral color and hand drawn visual delight that await the viewer.

(I like the Ponyo typeface on the American poster, though. That's nice.)

echoBlaster said...

I think the Norwegian poster (I think it was the same in the rest of Scandinavia, too) was great. It was sort of a mixture between the American one and the Japanese one.


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