Why Make a Fake Sign?


Signs are truly a part of the American and World landscape.  Even in the pseudo world of movies, signs still play an important role.  Due to trademark and licensing agreements many signs in movies are part of product placement or completely made up.  Signs add validity to businesses in life and in cinema.  Here are a few examples of famous signs in movies.

Pulp Fiction has to be one of my all time favorite movies.  The sign above is from “Jack Rabbit Slims” the 1950-60’s themed restaurant in the movie.  While this sign was completely fabricated for the film, it is still an effective sign.  The use of red neon allows the viewer to read “Jack Rabbit” very clearly.  The large 3 dimensional rabbit itself is a great use of the fictional restaurant’s logo.  Notice how big and dominate it is.  Also, it is very unique which allows the viewer to recall this image more effectively.  This sign also incorporates the restaurant’s tagline.  Below the rabbit reads “The Next Best Thing to a Time Machine”.  From this sign we can infer that this restaurant has a racing vintage theme.  If you have seen Pulp Fiction, then you know this sign is very appropriate for this venue.

This movie sign is from the comedic classic Wayne’s World.  Again this store front and sign were made for the movie.  While Stan Mikita was a famous Chicago Blackhawk, he did not own this donut shop.  To set this sign apart and again make it visible on the silver screen the larger than life figure is prominently displayed on the store’s rooftop.  If you have driven down Burnet Rd in Austin, there are many signs similar to this.

Here is an example of a great looking monument sign.  This sign is for Initech, the fake business from Office Space.  Again this is not a real sign, but a computer rendering of a sign.  While the sign is not real, it is still an effective rendering of a monument sign.

This second monument sign is from the diabolical company Cyberdyne Systems.  This is another effective sign, while the sign looks tame the Terminators created by this company are not.

Signs are important in reality and in the virtual world of movies.  If a movie is willing to spend this much time on the look of their signs, don’t you think it is important that you spend more?

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