Roland Coudon was a famous illustrator, Swiss-born if I’m not mistaken, who painted numerous French film posters in the 30’s, including one for Fritz Lang’s M, le maudit and, in 1939, Quasimodo, the French title for The Hunchback of Notre-Dame with Charles Laughton.
Coudon’s posters for Frankenstein, released in France in 1932, are unique. The poster above prominently features the title character, Colin Clive, with The Monster floating darkly in the background. Note, again, the suggested “horns” on The Monster’s forehead.
The monochromatic poster shown below is strikingly atmospheric, done in rough charcoal and a gouache the color of dried blood. The striding Monster pose is lifted from one of the American posters (here). Note the arms like rolled, riveted steel, accentuating the robotic aspect of the character. Coudon adds a lugubrious, windswept funeral procession which, of course, is the first scene in the picture.
Very effective, n’est-ce pas?
Images courtesy of Jean-Claude Michel.