When I'm thinking about movie poster design, the first name that comes to mind is legendary graphic designer Saul Bass.
"Saul Bass brought a designer’s sense of iconography and purpose to film posters, and more importantly, to film-making in general. The man who created the AT&T logo designed only a few film posters in his early career, but his designs were enough to change the direction of film key art. When looking at his poster designs for films like Anatomy of a Murder, Vertigo, and Exodus, one can see how Bass was able to encapsulate a film’s narrative direction in a visual identity through graphic design." from Posterwire
The titles of great classics such as Anatomy of a Murder and The man with to golden arm had made design history, being very deep rooted in our collective imagination(as testifies a recent HP advertising campaign).
In 1954 he was asked to design and create a title sequence to the film Carmen Jones. Saul Bass saw this as an opportunity to enhance the film goers experience. He didn't want to just have his sequence inform the audience, nor did he want to use the time to do some fancy graphical work that would show of his talents but add nothing to the film.
"My initial thoughts about what a title can do was to set mood and the prime underlying core of the film's story, to express the story in some metaphorical way. I saw the title as a way of conditioning the audience, so that when the film actually began, viewers would already have an emotional resonance with it" -Saul Bass