For many movie fans, Drew Struzan is the definitive poster artist. His work has brought film series like Indiana Jones, Star Wars and Hellboy to glorious life. But his work on the Back To The Future films remains our favorite.

A new book, The Art Of Drew Struzan, showcases his work on movie posters over the past few decades — and as lush and amazing as the finished products are, the sketches and unfinished versions are often the most fascinating. You get to see just how Struzan went about trying a bunch of different ideas and sketches for projects, and then tweaked and tweaked again.

The book also contains a lot of really great ancedotes, including the fact that Struzan only had one day to finish his iconic poster for John Carpenter's The Thing. He hadn't seen the remake, and didn't really know anything about it, but they told him to just go based on the 1952 original — and he still came up with one of the most famous images associated with the film.

It's also amazing how many posters feature Struzan's own body from the neck down — he used to pose and have his wife take pictures. Marty McFly? That's Drew Struzan with Michael J. Fox's head attached, because the poses the studio sent him weren't useable.

Besides the big ticket items like Harry Potter, Back To The Future and Star Wars, you get to see a lot of work on promotional imagery for films like Blade Runner, Big Trouble In Little China and Adventures In Babysitting — where Struzan had to cut the poster up by hand because the studio wanted the city in the background to be bigger.


Check out some images from the book, some of which are exclusive to io9. More images here and at Struzan's website.

Images © Copyright Drew Struzan. All Rights Reserved. Used by Permission.