Motion Graphics Monday: Stories Behind Mad Men’s Opening Title Sequence

AMC wrapped the seventh season of its Emmy-award winning series “Mad Men” last night which got us thinking about the creatives behind the show’s iconic opening title sequence: a silhouetted man who slow-tumbles from a high rise building while various classic advertising images fly past. Art of the Title interviewed the creators behind the compelling opening titles: producer Cara McKenney and creative directors Steve Fuller and Mark Gardner of top-notch LA production/branding/design studio, Imaginary Forces. 

“The show was gripping and emotional, complex and funny—it took my breath away… I knew there wasn’t a creative instinct in me that could have turned it down,” says McKenney who was hesitant to take on the project at first.

The filmmakers go on to discuss the creative process behind the title sequence, which has in and of itself has garnered its fair share of controversy due to its alleged likeness to images of victims falling from the World Trade Center during the 9/11 tragedy.

(The show’s creator Matthew Weiner convinced the network to use the concept of the falling man as a symbol of ambiguity as to whether the audience is watching a dream.)

See more behind-the-scenes images and get the full story at Art of the Title. Can’t get enough  motion graphics? View more motion graphics inspiration from 2014.

"Mad Men" logo exploration. Art of the Title Interviews Creators of "Mad Men" Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

“Mad Men” logo exploration. Art of the Title Interviews Creators of “Mad Men” Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of "Mad Men" Title Sequence.

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of “Mad Men” Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of "Mad Men" Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of “Mad Men” Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

Classic ads that inspired the opening title sequence of "Mad Men" by Imaginary Forces. Read the interview with Art of the Title. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com

Classic ads that inspired the opening title sequence of “Mad Men” by Imaginary Forces. Read the interview with Art of the Title. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of "Mad Men" Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

Art of the Title Interviews Creators of “Mad Men” Title Sequence. Image courtesy of artofthetitle.com.

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Author: Mani O'Brien

Mani O’Brien is the Online Editor for the FIDMDigitalArts Blog and the Social Media Marketing Manager for FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in print journalism from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communications at Arizona State University in 2006, and Associate of Arts degree in Graphic Design (Professional Designation) at FIDM in 2010. When she’s not brainstorming social media marketing ideas or writing about the graphic design and digital media, she enjoys practicing yoga, reading magazines, and hanging out with friends and family in Los Angeles.

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