There’s a popular belief out there stating that books are way better than movies. Books are great, as they allow readers to immerse themselves in the story. They unleash our imagination. On the other hand, movies have the ability to show us how the book’s experience unfolds. However, opinions are divided. Let’s take Stephen King’s example: The author has always been a source of inspiration to writers, yet his writings didn’t turn out very well when they were up on the big screen. “The Shining” is considered by the author as being “academic bullshit.” “The book is hot, and the movie is cold; the book ends in fire, and the movie in ice,” the author said in an interview with The Rolling Stone.

There are other novels written by him that turned into movies he isn’t quite proud of: “The Lawnmower Man” and both remakes of “Carrie.” There are plenty of other authors who didn’t appreciate the visual side of their stories. You see, many books were screened, but not all of them were successful. So, what if we did the opposite? What if we made books inspired by movies? Will they be more appreciated? It is a question to which there is no answer yet. However, illustrator and designer Matt Stevens gives it a try and creates “Good Movies as Old Books.”

“My Good Movies as Old Books series combines my love of film and old book art. As a professional designer and illustrator, I took on the project as an exercise to help me out of a creative funk and as a way to experiment with new mediums and techniques. After doing a few entries, the project took on a life of its own and I became excited about continuing to explore new ideas and reinterpret movies from my life that I have a deep affection for,” says the artist.

There are around 60 pieces of artwork made up until now. The designer’s goal is to create 100 illustrations and he hopes to transform them into a book. Actually, the artist has launched a Kickstarter project, via which he plans to invite everyone to step into a fantasy world that pampers both cinephiles and bibliophiles.

The movie-inspired books carry a vintage look, like they have been read by generations, but still finding themselves in good shape. Some of the titles that draw our attention are: “Gattaca,” in which a space ship leaves behind it a DNA-like smog; “Mad Max: Fury Road” looks like a psychedelic journey you are about to step on; “Fight Club” presents the main character in a fight with himself (his shadow); and “Inglorious Basterds” which focuses on a mashed-up swastika.

Based on the illustrations he already did, we couldn’t make a cinephile profile of the designer. However, it looks like he is into movies that have a twisted end, all of them being labeled as “classics.” We can’t wait to see the next 40 illustrations. We’re confident that the upcoming ones will be as good as these ones, as the designer seems to pay extra attention to details and has an original way of working.

Matt, before we end this article, we want to challenge you: How about doing an illustration for one of the movies that Stephen King — let’s say — rejected? Sure, there are covers for each of his books, but how about creating an image for one of these movies that the author doesn’t want to be associated with?


Matt Stevens