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Les Misérables (Musical and Film) Logo

Contributed by Stephen Coles on Aug 2nd, 2013. Artwork published in .
    Les Misérables (Musical and Film) Logo 1
    Source: http://maps.yourbestlondon.com Cosette logo and the words Les Misérables are the registered trademarks of Cameron Mackintosh Overseas Limited. License: All Rights Reserved.

    The image of Cosette used for the iconic logo of the Les Misérables musical is based on an etching by Gustave Brion, which is in turn from an illustration by Émile Bayard (1837–1891) for the first edition of the book. Dewynters creative director Russ Eglin adopted the art for the 1985 London production logo, pairing it with Caslon Antique. (Eglin went on to design for other Cameron Mackintosh productions such as The Phantom of the Opera and Cats.)

    As vital as the Cosette image is to the franchise, the logotype may be even more so, having survived for several decades, even up to the recent Hollywood film in which the classic illustration is replaced by a photo of the actor playing Cosette.

    The Les Misérables logo is almost certainly the most famous modern use of Caslon Antique, a typeface by Bernd Nadall that was released in metal by Barnhart Brothers & Spindler way back in the late 1800s. The design has nothing to do with Caslon which was likely applied for marketing reasons more than anything. The various digital interpretations of Caslon Antique vary widely, probably because they used different sizes as their sources, but also because some versions appear to smooth out a few of the original’s rough contours.

    Most recent branding for the stage production. Why the desert chrome?
    Source: http://www.cameronmackintosh.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    Most recent branding for the stage production. Why the desert chrome?

    Program from the original 1985 London production.
    Source: http://www.johncaird.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    Program from the original 1985 London production.

    First poster or playbill from the original 1985 London production at the Barbican Theatre.
    Source: http://www.johncaird.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    First poster or playbill from the original 1985 London production at the Barbican Theatre.

    Teaser poster for the 2012 film. Design by Ignition.
    Source: http://www.impawards.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    Teaser poster for the 2012 film. Design by Ignition.

    Poster for the 2012 film. Design by Ignition.
    Source: http://www.impawards.com License: All Rights Reserved.

    Poster for the 2012 film. Design by Ignition.

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