Not everyone shares my love for typography, but it combines two of my favourite elements together – text and design. The film industry has given us so many memorable fonts that are a synonymous with certain titles or directors. Below are some of my personal favourite film fonts with links to free versions available for download.
My god, is there a more iconic font than this? Every numbered film in this historic series begins with static blue text, ‘A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away…’, followed by the Star Wars logo and opening crawl text. The logo font began as a custom-drawn, blocky sans serif in 1977 and has remained an integral part of the series’ branding ever since. So find some awesome Star Wars inspired fonts here.
I know this is a questionable choice considering Allen is a known paedophile, but there is no denying this guy’s filmmaking abilities. Ignoring the horrible history behind this comic genius, let’s look at the font that became as crucial to Allen’s image as his glasses or underaged girls.
Much like Star Wars, Allen has used the same font since 1977, beginning with his timeless film Annie Hall. Every one of his movies from 1977 to 2012 (except Interiors) has used Windsor Light Condensed in the opening credits and title. Always white text on a black background for a total of 40 films. This beautiful serif font is an ode the book cover typeface of yesteryear and echoes the font commonly used on New York’s building address markers. Free download for Windsor Light Condensed here.
Just looking at this font, I can already hear those solemn trumpet notes from The Godfather’s opening theme. The iconic ‘The Godfather Waltz’ is as synonymous with this epic mafia trilogy as the film’s original typeface. The font’s extended serif is similar to Star Wars, but with sharper edges and lower-case letters. So download The Godfather font you can’t refuse, here.
Admittedly, there are a few different fonts used in the Harry Potter series across its books and films, but the most iconic of these is the font Able. It’s the same typeface as the Yahoo logo. Unfortunately, there’s no way to get this specific font for free – although, Myfonts does offer a package of four Able styles for $93.99. However, some magical fan-made alternatives are available here.
The Jurassic Park series uses an inline variant of Neuland, which is a font historically used to signify ‘exotic’ and ‘primitive’. Alongside Papyrus and Chop Suey, these three fonts represent egregious examples of ‘stereotypography’. A term describing typefaces that reductively symbolise entire cultures or nations).
Since its design in 1923, Neuland has become font shorthand for ‘jungle’ and ‘Africa’. Subsequently, the font has also been used on American Spirit’s cigarette packaging as well as promotional material for Lion King, Cool Runnings, and Jumanji.
While those examples all share a glaring similarity, the culturally insensitive use of Neuland embodies Jurassic Park‘s story perfectly. A poor design decision for promoting a fictional world that is built on historically bad decisions. Download Neuland here, however use with caution.
The Fast and the Furious
Unlike its leading star – Paul Walker – this film series refuses to crash and burn. While the novelty of these films got tiresome after adolescence, the series’ typeface has remained consistent and memorable across its nine titles. The Fast and the Furious has used Antique Olive Std Nord Italic since its first instalment in 2001 and is available to download here.
Next time, we’ll explore more film-inspired design by critiquing the poster designs of this year’s biggest cinematic release. However, one critical component that really helps create unique fonts is consistency and detail – both of which are simple to achieve using our free Grid and Guide templates. Get designing with ease and precision.