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 films 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 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 unusual cinema advertisements 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 good art."

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, rare vintage works 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

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Moo Jar 10 months ago

This one's better than the original

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#2

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Hans 10 months ago

Alien must have mated with Godzilla.

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#3

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Iván Galarraga 10 months 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!

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#4

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Hans 10 months ago

This is pretty much how I remember the original poster.

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#5

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Just Curious 10 months ago

Starring Laurence Reeves.

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#6

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birdhouse 10 months ago

The real weapons are those boobs!

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#7

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Juana 10 months ago

Whoa Cindy! Take it easy on the steroids.

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#8

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stellermatt 10 months ago

actually not bad

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#9

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Iván Galarraga 10 months ago

The guy in motorcycle looks like kim jong un

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#10

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C Hypercube 10 months ago

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

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#11

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Yezid Puerto 10 months ago

this one is actually very good

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#12

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Terror from Beyond Space 10 months ago

Did you make reservations?

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#13

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William Martinez 10 months ago

Wesley Snipes as Whoopi Woldberg

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#14

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stellermatt 10 months ago

Guest Director: Picasso

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#15

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Just Curious 10 months ago

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

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#16

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Just Curious 10 months ago

The spy who loved fishes

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#17

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glowworm2 10 months ago

Is the horse a vampire? XD!

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#18

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rakuninaru 10 months ago

hahaha that insect's face XD

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#19

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Swarf 10 months ago

Is that a bowler hat?

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#20

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birdhouse 10 months ago

My Splinter has changed?

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#21

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Randall Bray 10 months ago

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

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#22

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Just Curious 10 months ago

You had me at alligator boobs...

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#23

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stellermatt 10 months ago

Lovely fella that Grace Jones.

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#24

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ElectricBooty 10 months ago

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

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#25

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Just Curious 10 months ago

Starting Chuck in, and Norris the dog, apparently

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#26

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birdhouse 10 months ago

Did the snake breath fire??

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#27

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Taryn Wallace 10 months ago

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

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#28

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Winkwoga 10 months ago

Neat coffin cash registers

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#29

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Winkwoga 10 months ago

Starring Javier Bardem and the Rock

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#30

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Heidrance 10 months ago

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

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#31

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Just Curious 10 months ago

Lord Varys... how you doin'?

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#32

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Efia 10 months ago

These legs tho

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#33

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diane a 10 months ago

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

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#34

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birdhouse 10 months ago

Does she have a cat as a foot?

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#35

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Just Curious 10 months ago

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

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#36

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Rebekah 10 months ago

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

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#37

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Just Curious 10 months ago

That tongue tho

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Just Curious 10 months ago

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

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#39

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Analyn Lahr 10 months ago

Not just Dracula, it's Dracula!!

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#40

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Heidrance 10 months ago

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

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#41

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Diana Snow 10 months ago

Lol this one is just absurd.

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#42

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birdhouse 10 months ago

Christopher Walken as Frankenstein

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#43

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Master Markus 10 months ago

Is that a chestburster at the bottom?

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#44

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ItsYaBoi 10 months ago

Umm I'm not even going to ask

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#45

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Winkwoga 10 months ago

No Alyssa Milano??? Simply unacceptable

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#46

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Rebekah 10 months ago

Ghost Ship makes some pretty clean cuts.

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#47

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ElectricBooty 10 months ago

Gene Simmons vs Jason?

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#48

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stellermatt 10 months ago

Peppa Pig's let herself go...

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#49

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Moo Jar 10 months ago

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

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PrateekNarayanDas 10 months ago

Those gains, the guy's whole stomach is abs

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#51

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Randall Bray 10 months ago

That might be the best one I've seen

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Just Curious 10 months ago

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

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#53

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Winkwoga 10 months ago

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

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#54

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Bored Office Girl 10 months ago

This one is really cool.

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#55

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Tara B. 10 months ago

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

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#56

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Johanna Zamora 10 months ago

Chin is too small

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#57

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Hamlets twin 10 months ago

Its nice to see Stalking Cat in an acting role

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#58

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stellermatt 10 months ago

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

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#59

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birdhouse 10 months ago

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

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#60

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John Bennick 10 months ago

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

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#61

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birdhouse 10 months ago

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

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#62

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birdhouse 10 months ago

J-Lo isn't looking so good.

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Sardonic Scribe 10 months ago

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

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#64

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Ali Cat 10 months ago

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

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#65

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Al Bo 10 months ago

Kid + Play are decent enough. Right girl looks like she's acting innocent after "crop-dusting" the other.

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Randall Bray 10 months ago

Is that Joe pesci?

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#67

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Ali Cat 10 months ago

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

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#68

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stellermatt 10 months ago

...and santa

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#69

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Joshua Lott 10 months ago

Why does he look like he is about to jizz?

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#70

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Winkwoga 10 months ago

Starring pitbull

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#71

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Nadja Lambacher 10 months ago

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

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#72

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Prot Pap 10 months ago

Lol, the top-left woman’s face

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#73

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Leo 10 months ago

Seven Seagal and his toy boat!

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#74

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Sardonic Scribe 10 months ago

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

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#75

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Jenna Ryan 10 months ago

Are you ready for your prostate exam?

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#76

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Hamlets twin 10 months ago

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

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Jeremy Goodell 10 months ago

If that's Mary, I'm thinking this poster is a spoiler.

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#78

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Pablo Rodriguez 9 months ago

Are we sure this isn't a poster for "Mystery Men"?

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Sardonic Scribe 10 months ago

I truly had no idea that dinosaurs could breathe fire. Well, maybe just the carnivores.

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#80

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