The Pan Logo

Background

The Dr No UK movie poster used an all important detail that is often overlooked: a version of the 007Gun logo with expelled cartridge cases.

See the use of the 007Gun logo. 1962.

But…this had first appeared earlier, not on a film poster but on the Pan editions of the novels. It is the precursor to the 007Gun logo designed by Joseph Caroff – which would ultimately become the official logo for the franchise.

Across 1961-2 three versions of the Pan logo could be seen:

The logo on the left appeared for the first time on Great Pan paperback editions of the Bond novels published from late 1961 onwards, before filming on Dr No had even started. The logo in the middle appeared on British double crown posters at the time of the October 1962 release, while the logo on the right is the one that appears in the Quad poster further updated with the silhouette of a different pistol.

All this suggests that it was Pan who first came up with the idea of at least pairing ‘007’ and the gun. It is also interesting that they use yellow and red as their colour scheme, although yellow had been part of Pan’s house style across the 1950s, and was a design trope for movie posters.

Then when the logo was used in publicity material it was redrawn by Downton – twice. (While it is not possible to date (at the moment), the logo on the right was also used on UA/EON PR letter heading and then further amended as seen below.)

The further revised logo used on a press show invitation 1963.

The detailed nature of the relationship between Pan, with the triumvirate of Downton, UA (London) and EON is unknown but as they were selling hundreds of thousands of copies of the Bond books, piggy-backing on something familiar to Bond fans would have made sense. A win-win for both the producers and publisher. What we do know is that Fleming wrote a letter to Cape his publishers in July 1962, ‘Saltzman has most grandiose ideas about book sales to be co-ordinated with the film and he is blasting hell out of Pan because he can’t find my titles even in Foyles or Hatchards…he is talking of subsidising a print order in Pan’s running literally into millions of copies of my titles.’

Pan could be forgiven in wondering whether Saltzman knew anything about publishing not least because the typical Pan reader would not be buying the books in the very upmarket, central London stores of Foyles and Hatchards. And already they had sold hundreds of thousands of Bold novels. (By 1965, one million copies of Casino Royale alone had been sold.) Their print production process was also highly efficient and they could quickly turn up the number of books that were being printed. Not least they might have wondered whether Saltzman would be able to cough up the money and not just parade some showmanship bluster.

Dr No issued early 1962. 5th printing

Finally, on the subject of the logo, I have seen the claim that the Pan logo was designed by UA in New York. This is clearly not the case.

A Great Pan edition, 1962. Note too the use of yellow and red.
Film tie-in 6th Printing up to 14th 1962-64. However later in 1962 Pan agreed to reprint the novel this time tying in with the film’s release – and still using their original version of the logo.

Eventually the logo faded away on the UK posters and by On Her Majesty’s Secret Service it had been replaced fully by the Joseph Caroff version, undoubtedly a more striking version but to call it a wholly new design as opposed to an improvement and adaptation would perhaps be wrong despite what is claimed.

The Joseph Caroff design used in a Japanese poster.

And the Pan logo also disappeared from their editions of the novels from around 1964 onwards.


Please remember that all images have various copyright owners. The James Bond films and associated imagery are co-owned by Danjaq, LLC, and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios.

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