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Ben's Take: THE ART OF DREW STRUZAN Book Review

 

 

[Note: I'm fully aware Venkman just wrote up a review of this book today, which I'd recommend checking out here. Titan Books was kind enough to send me a copy as well, so read on for my take of the book.]

If there is ever a book worth two posts on GeekTyrant, this is the one. The Art of Drew Struzan, a wonderful book by Drew Struzan and David J. Schow, is an absolute must-read for any movie fan. If you think you're unfamiliar with Drew Struzan, I can assure you that you are mistaken: the artist is responsible for some of the most iconic movie posters of all time, including Back to the Future, all of the Indiana Jones films, and many more.

 

This book is a wonderful look into Struzan's mind as he talks the audience through inception to completion on various projects throughout his career. He details the process of dealing with studios, and as the book chronologically captures his career, also illustrates the downfall of true movie poster art in the Age of Photoshop. Struzan is candid in his stories, not afraid to mention specific studio names and express his occasional displeasure with their decisions; he's also quick to mention projects that went smoothly and is gracious in those scenarios as well.

With a foreword by Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile) and praise from George Lucas, Guillermo del Toro, and more, The Art of Drew Struzan is the perfect coffee table book for film fans. It's worth the money for the stories alone, but the artwork featured in the book is astonishingly good.

 

Along with the finished products that we've come to know and love, Struzan also includes his unfinished "comps" - work that didn't make the final cut, detailing his thought process and ideas as he tweaks the artwork based on studio suggestions and, sometimes, his own improvements. Being a huge Back to the Future fan, I was thrilled to see up to 14 unused pictures (some finished comps, some works in progress) featuring different takes on the classic Zemeckis film.

Some other posters included in the book: John Carpenter's The Thing, Steven Spielberg's Hook, Guillermo del Toro's Pan's Labyrinth, the Star Wars prequels, and Carpenter's Big Trouble in Little China.

The artwork is extremely high quality, and is collected and organized wonderfully in this book. Titan did a fantastic job of putting this together, and I can't recommend this highly enough to everyone reading this site. (And hey - Christmas is just around the corner, so this is a great gift for your movie-loving friends.)

 

Images (c) Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission. Special Thanks to Titan Books.

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