Film credits and title sequences are often overlooked. More often than not, you’ll remember the film (and in the case of programmes, the theme tune), but it’s unlikely that you’ll remember or care much for the design of the title sequence. Again, in the case of programmes you can happily fast-forward these opening parts, and film credits are usually the part where you’d either stop the movie, or walk out of the cinema.
Remember them or not, title sequences have set the scene for our viewing pleasure for years. Many designers and studios have paid homage to great designers, the likes of Saul Bass (‘Monsters Inc’ and ‘Catch Me If You Can’ title sequences are influenced greatly by the style of ‘Anatomy of a Murder’ and ‘The Man With the Golden Arm’) whilst others have carved their own style and pacing into the opening arena. Game of Thrones opens to a thunderous theme tune with one of the finest pieces of motion I’ve ever seen in a programme title sequence. I never skip.
In the case of Marvel Studios, opening sequences aren’t enough. Audiences are encouraged to stay and watch the end credits to be rewarded with a special scene related to another film in that series. This gives the working studio the opportunity to flex their creative muscles one last time, ending the film on a tour de force of special effects and detailed CGI set pieces, further fuelling the Marvel hype train.
However you may view them, they’re worth a second thought and second look, if not for a bit of nostalgia, just to appreciate the level of detail and creativity in each of them. Art of the Title has done a fantastic job of cataloguing many a great title sequence and is a brilliant resource for designers and inspiration hunters alike.
Some of my favourites: