Book to Movie: When a Book’s Cover Goes Hollywood

Posted October 8, 2015 by Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog in Discussions / 65 Comments

bookish discussions

Recently I finally picked up my audiobook version of The Martian. I have wanted to read it for a while. Then I bought it but put it aside. When I finally got to it, hit play on my Audible app there was a GIANT Matt Damon face staring at me. What the what??? I thought there was an orange cover with an astronaut on the cover. Ah but the movie just came out. Must be time for a new cover with the start of the movie on it. But does his face have to be literally all up in mine??

Anyway got me thinking of all the covers that get changed when the movie comes out. How many of them are just awful with just the characters on the cover. Are there any that are actually better than the original (or non-movie) cover? Well, I found out I don’t hate as many as I thought I would. Some were just eh. Here is my breakdown of some.

When the Movie Cover is Better

Movie pics better

It doesn’t happen often that the movie cover is just clearly better. I think with both The Devil Wears Prada and Big Fish they both clearly improved the original. Note: there are no stars of the movies on these covers.

They are Equally Good or Equally BadEVEN

Gone Girl: I kind of like both covers. The original gives off the creepy vibe. The movie one has a mystery to it. Plus I like they didn’t shove both the actors in our faces.
Girl, Interrupted: Equally good in my eyes. I like how and where the title is in both. While the movie one is of the actor (and yes it is all in my face) I think it is more artistically done.
The Help: These are both pretty good. I like that the colors and main idea is similar. While the actors are in this they are on a smaller scale.
The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants: This is an equally meh for me. With both, I don’t particularly hate them but I don’t particularly like them either.


The Perks of Being a Wallflower: Ok so I haven’t read the book ro watched the movie. I like both covers though. In the non-movie version I love the font against the background. In the movie version I love the baackground color. I also don’t find the actors distracting.
Still Alice: Both of these are just eh. I could kind of deal with either and wouldn’t care.
The Fault in Our Stars: I love both. I think I love the movie version because well I loved the movie. Also, I think it is sweet.
Wild: I mean whatever. They are both saying “Hey I am going on a super long hike”. I lean more towards the original but again whatever.

Prefer the Non-Hollywood Spin


Julie & Julia: No offense to Meryl Streep and Amy Adams but it’s just not a cute cover. I like the black bar with the title and little illustration but then it got all messed up with them on it (again no offense). I prefer the original.
The Martian: I mentioned this one above. It creeps me out a bit to have Matt Damon staring at me when I look at my phone when I am listening to it. SO yeah I rather have the original.
Eat Pray Love: I will say that I DNFed this book AND movie. UGH. Anyway the movie version is so boring. I hate the multiple scenes from the movie too. I think the original  cover was simple but connected well to what the book was.
If I Stay: These are actually kind of similar but it comes down to the multiple movie scenes for me. I really dislike that on movie covers.

The Nicholas Sparks Edition



I will say one thing about a Nicholas Sparks cover – they are consistent. All his non-movie covers look EXACTLY the same. All his movie covers look EXACTLY the same. The dude sells a shit ton of books so I guess it doesn’t matter either way right?

Are there any Hollywood covers you absolutely hate? ANy that you prefer?

Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog

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65 responses to “Book to Movie: When a Book’s Cover Goes Hollywood

  1. Wow I didn’t realize how nature-y Nicholas Sparks’ nonmovie covers are!! Haha he’s definitely consistent. And I totally agree about The Devil Wears Prada… much better!! I’m not a fan of the super movie looking covers though. Most of the time the book and the movie are really different, so to put that movie cover on the book bugs me. Plus just BLAH to seeing actor’s faces all big.
    Michelle recently posted…New YA Releases for the Week of 10/3My Profile

  2. I’m usually not so bothered by movie covers, but then I really don’t like the If I Stay movie cover for the book. I just find it really weird that they stacked random scenes in the front, like why???? Haha. It’s just a personal issue with me, but it’s not that bad. It’s just not something that appeals to me well 😛

    I have to agree that Nicholas Sparks’ book covers look very alike. Same concept and everything. It’s pretty funny 😛
    Jillian recently posted…How to Be an Organized BloggerMy Profile

  3. I usually prefer the original covers, at least when it comes to young adult. Is it just me, or do you find the covers a little less appealing in the adult genre. I much prefer the movie edition for practically all the adult fiction you have listed (Ok, maybe not for The Martian. Although, I do love Matt Damon’s face). But, I much prefer to actually own the original editions. It’s like “YEAH, I liked this book BEFORE it was a movie ;).
    Sarah recently posted…The Cost of All Things by Maggie Lehrman || All Magic Comes With a PriceMy Profile

  4. I agree with all of these. Nicholas Sparks is consistent not only in his covers, but his stories, which are all the same these days. I liked his early books, but I’m sick of him now. I know the new covers with the stars sell books to people who don[t read as much as we do, but it still annoys me.
    Elizabeth the Evil Overlord recently posted…Worst Movie Ever!My Profile

  5. Fun that you choose this topic today! I couldn’t agree with you more! More often than not, I don’t like the new covers at all. For some reason the faces, I don’t know, ruin it for me. What if I didn’t picture them as that actor while reading but now that is all I can see? I mean look at the Twilight cast, that was so not how I pictured Edward at all and now, he is all I see when I think about it. 🙁
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  6. Great post. Perfectly timed with my post today. Haha. I agreed about The Martian cover. So not necessary. I don’t like that Audible and Kindle update the cover after you’ve bought the book. It makes it hard to find it when you’re remembering the original cover. This happened to me with Still Alice.

    The only covers where I disagreed are The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants and If I Stay. I love the movie covers. Maybe because I really loved those movies? 🙂
    Kate recently posted…Book to Movie: The MartianMy Profile

  7. Fun topic! 🙂 I almost always prefer the original non-movie cover. I don’t want my book cover to be Hollywood’s vision of the characters or the story or whatever. If there’s a choice I’ll always choose the original cover. The TFIOS cover isn’t bad… but I’d still go for the original. It doesn’t help that when there is a movie version it’s so often an extreme close-up – and that’s rarely appealing. Had to laugh at all the Sparks covers… I guess his published figures if it ain’t broke don’t fix it? LOL
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  8. The Nicholas Sparks books had me cracking up! LOL! I must say, I agree with almost everything you said. BUT, I have a rule…one of my many book rules that have my husband questioning my sanity. I will not buy a book with the movie cover on it. I need to have the original cover, or I feel like I’m cheating or something. I’m weird, I know. Great post! I loved comparing all the covers!
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  9. OMG THE MATT DAMON ONE IS CREEPY. This is going to sound horrid, btw, but I actually had no idea The Martian was a book. I didn’t know Julie & Julia was a book either. I hate when books are Hollywood-ified and they’re shrunk to those tiny pocket-sized mini books. Like, really? How do they expect us to read from those? Great post!

  10. Good topic! For me it often depends on which I see first, if I read the book, I usually prefer that cover. But if I see the movie first and then read the book, well I already have the movie stars faces in my head so I’m ok with them on the covers.
    An exception to that rule though is Gone Girl. I loved the book, haven’t seen the movie yet but I much prefer the movie version cover of the book.
    The The Nicholas Sparks covers made me laugh, so true!
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  11. Hahahah I didn’t even KNOW THAT about Nicholas Sparks books! It’s kind of funny that the original covers kind of were bland in the first place. And I personally like the original Still Alice cover, I did like the movie, but I don’t know how I feel about the cover. And I find that for the Hollywood covers I don’t like, it’s mainly because the book cover is like a movie poster. And I don’t want that. 😛

    Love this post Grace!
    Valerie recently posted…ARC Review: Air AwakensMy Profile

  12. I don’t hate book covers that have been revised to tie-in with movies, but I don’t prefer them. Especially when the books original cover art was excellent to begin with (like those covers of Julia & Julia and The Martian!) But then, there are my Lord of the Rings books– because I was a HUGE fan of the movies, I was excited to have books with Elijah Wood and Viggo Mortensen staring back at me.
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