During the '80s and '90s, African artists were tasked with making Hollywood movie posters seem as exciting as possible, regardless of plot. Not only that, a fair share of the time they were creating promotional material for popular movies they hadn't even see. Their works had to sell tickets, so if the movie was said to be gory, the poster had to be the goriest - we're talking skulls, blood, skulls dripping blood, crushed skulls, etc.

Arguably most of these hand-painted bootleg movie posters were produced in Ghana. "World cinema is a lingua franca we all understand," Los Angeles Ernie Wolfe art dealer and collector told The Atlantic. He first noted these weird drawings while traveling in the country in 1990. "These posters appeal to people because [they] invite this really incredible dialogue—a comparison between what you know of a film and how the painter imagined it. And they’re also just really cool drawings."

During the military dictatorships of the 1970s and '80s, restrictive laws cut off the importation of the large-scale offset printing presses, usually used for poster making everywhere else in the world. Because of that, Ghanaians hand-crafted movie posters and other signage well into the 1990s.

The only restriction was the size of the canvases. Any particular one had to fit on one side of a 50kg flour bag or two sides stitched together. Apart from that, there were no limits.

However, with changes in political climate and technology, the hand-crafted posters eventually became obsolete. Until art collectors from the West took an interest. Now, the best movie posters are being sold for as much as $15,000. As the new global market opened, local artists started to create these posters anew.

(h/t cnn)

#1

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Moo Jar 1 year ago

This one's better than the original

View more comments
#2

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Hans 1 year ago

Alien must have mated with Godzilla.

View more comments
#3

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Iván Galarraga 1 year ago

You say potato and I say po-tah-to You say terminato and I say termi-nah-to? Let's call the whole thing off!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#4

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Hans 1 year ago

This is pretty much how I remember the original poster.

View more comments
#5

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

Starring Laurence Reeves.

View more comments
#6

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

The real weapons are those boobs!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#7

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Juana 1 year ago

Whoa Cindy! Take it easy on the steroids.

View More Replies...
View more comments
#8

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

actually not bad

View More Replies...
View more comments
#9

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Iván Galarraga 1 year ago

The guy in motorcycle looks like kim jong un

View More Replies...
View more comments
#10

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

C Hypercube 1 year ago

From the same person that botched the Jesus painting, comes a new masterpiece.

View More Replies...
View more comments
#11

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Yezid Puerto 1 year ago

this one is actually very good

View More Replies...
View more comments
#12

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Terror from Beyond Space 1 year ago

Did you make reservations?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#13

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

William Martinez 1 year ago

Wesley Snipes as Whoopi Woldberg

View More Replies...
View more comments
#14

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

Guest Director: Picasso

View more comments
#15

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

Aw, who's a good killer dog? Who's a good killer dog??

View More Replies...
View more comments
#16

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

The spy who loved fishes

View More Replies...
View more comments
#17

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

glowworm2 1 year ago

Is the horse a vampire? XD!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#18

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

rakuninaru 1 year ago

hahaha that insect's face XD

View More Replies...
View more comments
#19

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Swarf 1 year ago

Is that a bowler hat?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#20

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

My Splinter has changed?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#21

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Randall Bray 1 year ago

Ummmm....huh? Would never know what that movie was about from the poster! What's up with the blade?

View more comments
#22

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

You had me at alligator boobs...

View more comments
#23

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

Lovely fella that Grace Jones.

View more comments
#24

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

ElectricBooty 1 year ago

"Hey Freddy, do I have something in my eye?"

View More Replies...
View more comments
#25

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

Starting Chuck in, and Norris the dog, apparently

View more comments
#26

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

Did the snake breath fire??

View More Replies...
View more comments
#27

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Taryn Wallace 1 year ago

Starring Jackie Chan and his lesser known blonde, totally ripped twin sister Jaqueline Chan

View More Replies...
View more comments
#28

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Winkwoga 1 year ago

Neat coffin cash registers

View more comments
#29

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Winkwoga 1 year ago

Starring Javier Bardem and the Rock

View more comments
#30

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Heidrance 1 year ago

i mean, sure, john hannah is in it... not exactly the headliner.

View more comments
#31

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

Lord Varys... how you doin'?

View more comments
#32

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Efia 1 year ago

These legs tho

View More Replies...
View more comments
#33

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

diane a 1 year ago

why do so many of these have a yellow border? - kind of like National Geographic Magazine covers

View More Replies...
View more comments
#34

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

Does she have a cat as a foot?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#35

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

That gun looks useful for shooting in 2 directions at once...

View more comments
#36

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Rebekah 1 year ago

Everyone on this, boy, cat, "dog", all need some roughage. Constipation is no laughing matter.

View more comments
#37

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

That tongue tho

View more comments
#38

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

I didn't know homeless Keanu Reeves was in this movie!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#39

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Analyn Lahr 1 year ago

Not just Dracula, it's Dracula!!

View More Replies...
View more comments
#40

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Heidrance 1 year ago

Kroenen is very "draw me like one of your French girls" in this pose...

View more comments
#41

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Diana Snow 1 year ago

Lol this one is just absurd.

View more comments
#42

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

Christopher Walken as Frankenstein

View More Replies...
View more comments
#43

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Master Markus 1 year ago

Is that a chestburster at the bottom?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#44

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

ItsYaBoi 1 year ago

Umm I'm not even going to ask

View more comments
#45

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Winkwoga 1 year ago

No Alyssa Milano??? Simply unacceptable

View more comments
#46

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Rebekah 1 year ago

Ghost Ship makes some pretty clean cuts.

View more comments
#47

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

ElectricBooty 1 year ago

Gene Simmons vs Jason?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#48

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

Peppa Pig's let herself go...

View more comments
#49

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Moo Jar 1 year ago

"Honor or revenge, he has no choice". Well, he kinda does have a choice

View more comments
#50

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

PrateekNarayanDas 1 year ago

Those gains, the guy's whole stomach is abs

View more comments
#51

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Randall Bray 1 year ago

That might be the best one I've seen

#52

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Just Curious 1 year ago

Um, I believe the correct title was "Interview With the Fierce Ghost Eats Human Region"...

View More Replies...
View more comments
#53

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Winkwoga 1 year ago

Even not-swayze is saying "what the hell is this"??

View More Replies...
View more comments
#54

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Bored Office Girl 1 year ago

This one is really cool.

View more comments
#55

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Tara B. 1 year ago

Elektra lookin like a dude...or Hillary Swank.

View more comments
#56

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Johanna Zamora 1 year ago

Chin is too small

View More Replies...
View more comments
#57

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Hamlets twin 1 year ago

Its nice to see Stalking Cat in an acting role

View more comments
#58

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

I can't do eyes, I'll just fill these in, nobody will notice.

View more comments
#59

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

LOL, From the Peace Video Club....PLANET TERROR!

View more comments
#60

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

John Bennick 1 year ago

The title reminds me of a guy I worked for back in the eightys.

View more comments
#61

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

Why in all these posters does someone's head get chopped off?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#62

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

birdhouse 1 year ago

J-Lo isn't looking so good.

View More Replies...
View more comments
#63

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Sardonic Scribe 1 year ago

The Asian Kurt Russell with someone who looks nothing like Kim Cattrall. Lo-Pan be pimpin' though.

View more comments
See Also on Bored Panda
#64

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Ali Cat 1 year ago

Oh My Rock, My Dwayne, My Johnson, they did you worse than the terrible CGI in this movie!

View more comments
#65

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

John Yeager 2 weeks ago

Starring... Chang and Eng, The famous Siamese Twins!

View more comments
#66

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Randall Bray 1 year ago

Is that Joe pesci?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#67

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Ali Cat 1 year ago

It's like Bruce Campbell and Stallone had a very squiggly baby.

View more comments
#68

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

stellermatt 1 year ago

...and santa

View more comments
#69

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Joshua Lott 1 year ago

Why does he look like he is about to jizz?

View More Replies...
View more comments
#70

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Winkwoga 1 year ago

Starring pitbull

View more comments
#71

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Nadja Lambacher 1 year ago

that looks like Hulk has a demon growing out of his crotch O_O

View More Replies...
View more comments
#72

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Prot Pap 1 year ago

Lol, the top-left woman’s face

View more comments
#73

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Leo 1 year ago

Seven Seagal and his toy boat!

View More Replies...
View more comments
See Also on Bored Panda
#74

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Sardonic Scribe 1 year ago

Looks like we've got two Arnie movies for the price of one! The Running Man & Commando.

View more comments
#75

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Jenna Ryan 1 year ago

Are you ready for your prostate exam?

View more comments
#76

Movie Posters From Africa

Report

Hamlets twin 1 year ago

Snoop Dogg and Ice T made one ugly kid... And why is Mike Tyson eating a hot-dog?

View more comments
#77

Movie Posters From Africa

Report