Prog 1910’s Ichabod Azrael cover by Glenn Fabry and Adam Brown v Clint Eastwood in Pale Rider (1985)
The quote on the 2000 AD cover and the title of the Eastwood film are both references to the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse as described in the last book of the Bible’s New Testament; the rider of the pale horse being Death
Eastwood had, prior to Unforgiven, long since abandoned the idea of ever winning an Academy Award, at one point stating, “First, I’m not Jewish. Secondly, I make too much money. Thirdly, and most importantly, because I don’t give a fuck”. Since his double Oscar win for Unforgiven, Eastwood has gone on to win two more Oscars, as well as an Irving G. Thalberg Memorial Award, and has been nominated an additional six times.
These days the above-pictured composition is not so much a lift as it is a cliché, so frequently used on film posters, etc., since Unforgiven that it serves on occasion as a lighthearted wink at audiences:
Awarded periodically by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences at the Governors Awards ceremonies to “creative producers, whose bodies of work reflect a consistently high quality of motion picture production”