Fans are adoring the new Star Wars TV and extended canon content getting given to them but remain excited about the movies that will be coming out from the likes of Taika Waititi over the next few years. Star Wars movies do not need to do much to get the fandom excited for them, but over the years, posters have done a great job of building anticipation.
There have been some truly awesome Star Wars posters over the years, whether they be terrific pieces of art that give a good feel for the film or they are smaller, more nuanced pieces that are emotionally powerful, and the best of which have been ranked by Ranker users.SCREENRANT VIDEO OF THE DAY
The Empire Strikes Back Theatrical Release Poster (Style B) (1980)
By Tom Jung
The Empire Strikes Back is a film that just does not miss. It is incredible in every way, and that oozes over into its posters, too, with the film having multiple great posters, including this style B poster.
On top of tying in key scenes of the movie, what gets hammered home here is the expectations of the title. With Vader looming over all of the heroes while stormtroopers barraging right through them as they look up to Vader's colossal figure, this poster is not just well designed and badass but strikes home how in danger the heroes are.
Return Of The Jedi Theatrical Release Poster (Style A) (1983)
By Tim Reamer
While Star Wars posters are so often busy and epic, some of the best are simple with few things put to the page, such as the incredible teaser for The Last Jedi, which does not make Ranker's list and this brilliant work.
With hands - that legend says belong to George Lucas - gripping onto Luke's new lightsaber with, apparently, a new hand, having lost both in what was almost a hopeless end to his last adventure, this poster does so much while showing so little. Sometimes simple works best, and that is what works best for Tim Reamer's sleek poster here.
The Empire Strikes Back Special Edition (1997)
By Drew Struzan
Over the past twenty-five years, there has been so much debate and discourse surrounding the special editions of the original trilogy, but there is no doubting that their posters, done by Drew Struzan, are all great.
With the absence of heroes and the only characters being Star Wars' most powerful villains the Emperor and the towering Darth Vader, this poster is solely focused on the Empire and conveys its might perfectly. It is a simple but striking poster that fits wonderfully in the set along with the other two great posters. This one, though, has been deemed the best of the three.
Revenge Of The Sith Theatrical Release Poster (2005)
By Drew Struzan
The consensus is that Revenge Of The Sith is the best of the prequel trilogy and, according to Ranker, it has the best theatrical poster also, and a lot of that can be attributed to the central image as well as the looming figure up top.
Multiple iconic characters and scenes are caught on this piece of art, and, as he does in numerous Star Wars posters, Vader's striking image looming over the characters creates a real sense of dread. Also, a tragedy for Anakin and Obi-Wan, whose immense lightsaber duel creates another awesome image to draw attention.
The Phantom Menace Teaser Poster (1998)
By Ellen Lee
To many fans, especially those who grew up with the prequel trilogy, this may well be the greatest Star Wars poster, in general, not just teasers. It is a simple image, but one that says so much.
The entire tragedy of Anakin Skywalker, which is itself at the heart of the Skywalker saga, is told by this poster as a young, innocent boy stands on the sands of Tatooine, his whole life ahead of them, yet he carries the weight of a dark shadow that looms over him with an air of inevitability. For Ranker, Darth Vader appears to be the secret to a great Star Wars poster.
Revenge Of The Jedi Poster (1982)
By Drew Struzan
A famous story in the history of Star Wars is the late-in-the-game title change for the third installment of the original trilogy as the film went from being 'Revenge of the Jedi' to Return of the Jedi. The teaser poster for the former has become a bit legendary.
Not only does it have an aura of interest around it because it did not end up being the movie's title and because it looks dark and striking, but it is just a brilliant-looking poster. The promise of a rematch, the threatening black helmet of Vader cloaked in red, it is just an epic piece of promotional art that, as teasers should, gives just enough to get fans excited.
Return Of The Jedi Theatrical Release Poster (Style B) (1983)
By Kazuhiko Sano
Return Of The Jedi was a fitting end to the original trilogy, even if the quality of the movie is a bit of a step down from what came before. Its posters, like most from the original trilogy, induce a sense of nostalgia and are joys to look at.
This one is especially so, with it being deemed the very best from the movie. It beats out some truly incredible sequel and prequel posters, but it's classic and hard to argue against. With a new Death Star, the heroes donning new outfits, Ewok's, and the standard looming Vader, it teases a lot for the movie and the original trilogy character's arcs coming to an end while creating a great nostalgic feel.
Star Wars Theatrical Release Poster (Style C) (1977)
By Tom Chantrell
Everything about A New Hope is both legendary and classic, including its posters, all of which are great, not least of all this style C theatrical poster, one of the best-known pieces of Star Wars artwork ever.
This collage-like approach to Star Wars posters has been used for theatrical posters ever since this, depicting the main cast in all their glory as well as some key events, which, in this case, are the Death Star trench run and the Lars Homestead. In many ways, this is the standard-bearer, and it is no surprise to see it ranked so highly.
The Empire Strikes Back Theatrical Release Poster (Style A) (1980)
By Roger Kastel
The Star Wars franchise holds within it various genres and different kinds of stories to be told, and Roger Kasel's phenomenal work on this theatrical poster for The Empire Strikes Back captures one of them better than any other poster, romance.
The inevitably doomed yet beloved and remarkable romance between Han Solo and Leia Organa is right at the heart of this brilliant poster adding a level of emotional investment that arguably is not in any other Star Wars poster from the original trilogy. As usual, Vader is on show, highlighting the impending doom of the characters who terrifically occupy the space of this poster despite the sparse numbers.
Star Wars Theatrical Release Poster (Style A) (1977)
By Tom Jung
Of all the dozens of official Star Wars movie posters that have been released over the past forty-five years, the users of Ranker have deemed this effort by Tom Jung the best of the best, and it is hard to argue with them.
When it comes to iconic Star Wars images, few are on the level of this. A ripped Luke holding his laser sword to the sky, the droids to the side, Leia front and center, Vader covering most of the page, and X-Wings bombing towards the Death Star, this poster does not have too many characters, but it has so much going on. This poster does not need Han and Obi-Wan to be great and memorable, as it is instantly recognizable by fans and evokes strong emotion from whoever looks at it.
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