• John Fiorella


If you were a kid in the 70's, you had this poster hanging somewhere in your room. Not only is this image ten-thousand times cooler than anything in the actual movie, but it sparked a heated debate among five-year-olds that swept across every playground in the nation. The question at hand: what the heck is in King Kong's grip?!

There were two heavily divided schools of thought. The Realists made the case that it had to be a plane, ripped of its wings. The Dreamers, of which I belonged, thought it was a mangled subway car that Kong brought up there to use as a club. And there were some crazed conspiracy theorists, like Jim Lill, who sat next to me in Kindergarten and ate more than his share of Elmer's glue. He was convinced that Kong had caught an atomic rocket flown by a Kamikaze pilot.

So, who was right?

It would be decades later when we learned the truth. It turns out, it was a plane! AND a subway train! AND whatever any glue eating kid could imagine. While the first draft of this poster clearly shows Kong man-handling an airplane, the movie producers insisted on making some changes.

According to the artist, the legendary John Berkey, in order to avoid tension with the Canadian Air Force, from whom the producers hoped to make use of their jets, John was told to make the wreckage “unidentifiable rubble” or what he later deemed “a blob.”

A freakin' blob...

Train, plane or rocket, there's no denying the power of this iconic piece of movie marketing magic.