Writers The Best Movies About Writers  

Ranker Film
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List of movies about writers, as ranked by film critics and fans. Movies about writers are always interesting and filled with depth because the screenwriters truly understand what goes on in the mind of the scribe. These films follow writer characters through some real life issues like writer’s block, intense jealousy between writers, and being driven mad by genius. Other films take a more fantastical take on the plight of the writer with serial killers, stalkers, and characters that come to life. No matter the genre, these films follow the same overarching themes that real life writer’s actual experience.

Many of the movies on this list think of storytelling as therapy, where the writer is spinning a yarn in order to battle their own struggles. A few of the films follow real life novelists and screenwriters during the experiences that caused them to write their greatest works.

If you’ve been wondering, “What are the best movies about writers?” this list has every film you need, from thrillers where writer’s go crazy, like Secret Window, to horror movies where fans go too far, like Misery,to simple contemplative movies like American Splendor. The movies on this list feature the most memorable fictional writer’s in film history.

list ordered by

1
29 10
Capote is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Philip Seymour Hoffman, Chris Cooper, Catherine Keener Capote is a 2005 biographical film about Truman Capote, following the events during the writing of Capote's non-fiction book In Cold Blood. Philip Seymour Hoffman won several awards, including ...more

2
35 21
Dead Poets Society is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Robin Williams, Ethan Hawke, Lara Flynn Boyle Dead Poets Society is a 1989 American drama film written by Tom Schulman, directed by Peter Weir and starring Robin Williams. Set at the conservative and aristocratic Welton Academy in the ...more

3
28 15
Misery is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Lauren Bacall, Kathy Bates, James Caan Misery is a 1990 American psychological thriller film based on Stephen King's 1987 novel of the same name and starring James Caan, Kathy Bates, Lauren Bacall, Richard Farnsworth, and Frances ...more

4
23 11
Wonder Boys is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Robert Downey Jr., Katie Holmes, Michael Douglas Wonder Boys is an American 2000 comedy film directed by Curtis Hanson and written by Steve Kloves. The film was based on the novel of the same title by Michael Chabon. Michael Douglas stars as ...more

5
25 13
Adaptation is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Nicolas Cage, Meryl Streep, Maggie Gyllenhaal Adaptation is a 2002 American comedy-drama metafilm directed by Spike Jonze and written by Charlie Kaufman. The film is based on Susan Orlean's non-fiction book The Orchid Thief, with numerous ...more

6
26 14
Midnight in Paris is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Rachel McAdams, Marion Cotillard, Tom Hiddleston Midnight in Paris is an American 2011 romantic comedy fantasy film written and directed by Woody Allen. Set in Paris, the film follows Gil Pender, a screenwriter, who is forced to confront the ...more

7
26 14
Finding Forrester is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Anna Paquin, Matt Damon, Sean Connery Finding Forrester is a 2000 American drama film written by Mike Rich and directed by Gus Van Sant. An African-American teenager, Jamal Wallace, is invited to attend a prestigious private high ...more

8
26 16
The Shining is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Bootsdad added Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Scatman Crothers The Shining is a 1980 British-American psychological horror film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick, co-written with novelist Diane Johnson, and starring Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, ...more

9
22 13
Almost Famous is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Zooey Deschanel, Kate Hudson, Anna Paquin Almost Famous is a 2000 comedy-drama film written and directed by Cameron Crowe and starring Billy Crudup, Kate Hudson, and Patrick Fugit. It tells the fictional story of a teenage journalist ...more

10
27 18
Stranger than Fiction is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Will Ferrell, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah Stranger than Fiction is a 2006 American comedy-drama-fantasy film directed by Marc Forster, written by Zach Helm, and starring Will Ferrell, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Dustin Hoffman, Queen Latifah, ...more

11
18 10
Finding Neverland is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Dustin Hoffman Finding Neverland is a 2004 American semi-biographical film about playwright J. M. Barrie and his relationship with a family who inspired him to create Peter Pan, directed by Marc Forster. The ...more

12
20 12
Barton Fink is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
John Goodman, Steve Buscemi, Frances McDormand Barton Fink is a 1991 American period film written, produced, directed and edited by the Coen brothers. Set in 1941, it stars John Turturro in the title role as a young New York City playwright ...more

13
25 17
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Johnny Depp, Cameron Diaz, Christina Ricci Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas is a 1998 American dark comedy film co-written and directed by Terry Gilliam, starring Johnny Depp as Raoul Duke and Benicio del Toro as Dr. Gonzo. It was adapted ...more

14
10 3
Shadowlands is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Anthony Hopkins, Debra Winger, James Frain Shadowlands is a 1993 British biographical film about the love-relationship between Oxford academic C. S. Lewis and American poet Joy Davidman, her death from cancer, and how this challenged ...more

15
11 4
Kill Your Darlings is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
iriska added Daniel Radcliffe, Elizabeth Olsen, Jennifer Jason Leigh Kill Your Darlings is a 2013 American biographical drama film written by Austin Bunn and directed by John Krokidas in his feature film directorial debut. The film had its world premiere at the ...more

16
16 9
Shakespeare in Love is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Gwyneth Paltrow, Ben Affleck, Judi Dench Shakespeare in Love is a 1998 British-American romantic comedy-drama film directed by John Madden, written by Marc Norman and playwright Tom Stoppard. The film depicts an imaginary love affair ...more

17
16 9
Atonement is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Keira Knightley, Benedict Cumberbatch, Saoirse Ronan Atonement is a 2007 British romantic drama film directed by Joe Wright and based on Ian McEwan's 2001 novel of the same name. The film stars James McAvoy, Keira Knightley, Saoirse Ronan, Romola ...more

18
21 14
My Left Foot is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Daniel Day-Lewis, Fiona Shaw, Brenda Fricker My Left Foot: The Story of Christy Brown is a 1989 Irish drama film directed by Jim Sheridan and starring Daniel Day-Lewis. It tells the story of Christy Brown, an Irishman born with cerebral ...more

19
24 17
Secret Window is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Johnny Depp, Maria Bello, John Turturro Secret Window is a 2004 American psychological thriller film starring Johnny Depp and John Turturro. It was written and directed by David Koepp, based on the novella Secret Window, Secret Garden ...more

20
16 11
As Good as It Gets is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Jack Nicholson, Helen Hunt, Julie Benz As Good as It Gets is a 1997 American romantic comedy film directed by James L. Brooks and produced by Laura Ziskin. It stars Jack Nicholson as a misanthropic, homophobic, racist, ...more

21
17 13
Sideways is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Sandra Oh, Virginia Madsen, Thomas Haden Church Sideways is a 2004 American comedy-drama film written by Jim Taylor and Alexander Payne and directed by Payne. A film adaptation from Rex Pickett's novel of the same name, Sideways follows two ...more

22
11 7
Saving Mr. Banks is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Tom Hanks, Colin Farrell, Emma Thompson Saving Mr. Banks is a 2013 period drama film directed by John Lee Hancock from a screenplay written by Kelly Marcel and Sue Smith. Centered on the development of the 1964 Walt Disney Studios ...more

23
14 11
The Ghost Writer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Pierce Brosnan, Ewan McGregor, Kim Cattrall The Ghost Writer is 2010 thriller film written by Robert Harris and Roman Polanski and directed by Roman Polanski.

24
10 7
Deathtrap is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Michael Caine, Christopher Reeve, Dyan Cannon Deathtrap is a 1982 thriller based on Ira Levin's play of the same name, directed by Sidney Lumet from a screenplay by Levin and Jay Presson Allen, starring Michael Caine and Christopher Reeve.

25
5 2
Genius is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
celestine added Genius Colin Firth, Jude Law, Nicole Kidman Genius is a 2016 British-American biographical drama film directed by Michael Grandage, based on the book by A. Scott Berg. A chronicle of Max Perkins's (Colin Firth) time as the book editor at ...more

26
16 14
The Words is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Olivia Wilde, Zoe Saldana, Bradley Cooper The Words is a 2012 mystery romantic drama film, written and directed by Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal in their directorial debut. It stars Bradley Cooper, Zoe Saldana, Olivia Wilde, Jeremy ...more

27
15 14
Annie Hall is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Woody Allen, Sigourney Weaver, Christopher Walken Annie Hall is a 1977 American romantic comedy directed by Woody Allen from a screenplay he co-wrote with Marshall Brickman. Produced by Allen's manager, Charles H. Joffe, the film stars Allen as ...more

28
9 8
Zorba the Greek is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Anthony Quinn, Alan Bates, Irene Papas Zorba the Greek is a 1964 British-Greek drama film directed by Cypriot Michael Cacoyannis and starring Anthony Quinn as the title character. It is based on the novel Zorba the Greek by Nikos ...more

29
12 12
Leaving Las Vegas is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Nicolas Cage, Mariska Hargitay, Elisabeth Shue Leaving Las Vegas is a 1995 romantic drama film written and directed by Mike Figgis and based on a semi-autobiographical novel of the same name by John O'Brien. Nicolas Cage, who has ended his ...more

30
10 10
Romancing the Stone is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Kathleen Turner, Danny DeVito, Michael Douglas Romancing the Stone is a 1984 American action-adventure romantic comedy. Directed by Robert Zemeckis, it stars Michael Douglas, Kathleen Turner and Danny DeVito. The film was followed by a 1985 ...more

31
8 8
Deconstructing Harry is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Demi Moore, Jennifer Garner, Robin Williams Deconstructing Harry is a comedy film written and directed by Woody Allen and released in 1997. This film tells the story of a successful writer named Harry Block, played by Allen, who draws ...more

32
7 7
1408 is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
abel-santiago added Samuel L. Jackson, John Cusack, Kate Walsh 1408 is a 2007 American psychological horror film based on the Stephen King 1999 short story of the same name directed by Swedish director Mikael Håfström. The movie stars John ...more

33
6 6
Sleuth is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Michael Caine, Laurence Olivier, Eve Channing Sleuth is a 1972 mystery thriller film directed by Joseph L. Mankiewicz. The screenplay by British playwright Anthony Shaffer was based on his 1970 Tony Award-winning play Sleuth. The film stars ...more

34
1 1
The Wife is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Glenn Close, Jonathan Pryce, Christian Slater The Wife is a 2018 drama film directed by Björn Runge, based on the novel by Meg Wolitzer. A wife (Glenn Close) questions her life choices as she travels to Stockholm with her husband ...more

35
10 11
Naked Lunch is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Ian Holm, Roy Scheider, Julian Sands Naked Lunch is a 1991 science fiction drama film written and directed by David Cronenberg and starring Peter Weller, Judy Davis, Ian Holm, and Roy Scheider. It is a film adaptation of William S. ...more

36
10 11
American Splendor is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Paul Giamatti, Josh Hutchersonm, Molly Shannon American Splendor is a 2003 American biographical comedy-drama film about Harvey Pekar, the author of the American Splendor comic book series. The film is also in part an adaptation of the ...more

37
7 8
The Player is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Julia Roberts, Bruce Willis, Whoopi Goldberg The Player is a 1992 American satirical film directed by Robert Altman from a screenplay by Michael Tolkin based on his own 1988 novel of the same name. It is the story of Hollywood studio ...more

38
10 12
Limitless is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Robert De Niro, Bradley Cooper, Bruce Lee Limitless is a 2011 American thriller film directed by Neil Burger and starring Bradley Cooper, Abbie Cornish, and Robert De Niro. It is based on the novel The Dark Fields by Alan Glynn.

39
0 1
Colette is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Keira Knightley, Dominic West, Eleanor Tomlinson Colette is a 2018 British biographical drama film directed by Wash Westmoreland. Pushed by her husband to write novels under his name, Gabrielle Colette (Keira Knightley) fights to make her ...more

40
5 7
Starting Out in the Evening is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Frank Langella, Lauren Ambrose, Lili Taylor Starting Out in the Evening is a 2007 American drama film directed by Andrew Wagner. The screenplay by Wagner and Fred Parnes is based on the novel of the same name by Brian Morton.

41
4 6
House by the River is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Jane Wyatt, Kathleen Freeman, Louis Hayward House by the River is a 1950 Gothic film noir directed by Fritz Lang, and starring Louis Hayward, Jane Wyatt, Lee Bowman, and Dorothy Patrick.

42
3 5
Impromptu is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Emma Thompson, Hugh Grant, Bernadette Peters Impromptu is a 1991 British-American period drama film directed by James Lapine, written by Sarah Kernochan, produced by Daniel A. Sherkow and Stuart Oken, and starring Hugh Grant as ...more

43
3 5
In the Mouth of Madness is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
abel-santiago added Hayden Christensen, Charlton Heston, Sam Neill In the Mouth of Madness is a 1995 American Lovecraftian horror film directed and scored by John Carpenter and written by Michael De Luca. It stars Sam Neill, Julie Carmen, Jürgen Prochnow, ...more

44
9 12
Insomnia is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Al Pacino, Robin Williams, Hilary Swank Insomnia is a 2002 American thriller film directed by Christopher Nolan, and starring Al Pacino, Robin Williams and Hilary Swank. It tells the story of two Los Angeles homicide detectives ...more

45
7 10
The Squid and the Whale is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Anna Paquin, Alexandra Daddario, Laura Linney The Squid and the Whale is a 2005 American arthouse comedy-drama film written and directed by Noah Baumbach and produced by Wes Anderson. It tells the semi-autobiographical story of two boys in ...more

46
5 8
Chinese Coffee is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Al Pacino, Jerry Orbach, Libby Langdon Chinese Coffee is a play by Ira Lewis which was made into an independent film and released in New York as part of the Tribeca Film Festival, starring Al Pacino and Jerry Orbach. Pacino directed ...more

47
5 8
The World According to Garp is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
looksharp added Robin Williams, Glenn Close, John Lithgow The World According to Garp is 1982 American comedy-drama film directed by George Roy Hill and starring Robin Williams in the title role. It is based on the novel of the same title by John ...more

48
4 7
Reprise is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Christian Rubeck, Henrik Elvestad, Henrik Mestad Reprise is a Norwegian film directed by Joachim Trier. Co-written over the course of five years with Eskil Vogt, it is Trier's first feature-length film. In 2006 it was the Norwegian candidate ...more

49
3 6
Providence is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Ellen Burstyn, John Gielgud, Dirk Bogarde Providence is a 1977 French/Swiss film directed by Alain Resnais from a screenplay by David Mercer. It explores the processes of creativity through a portrayal of an ageing novelist, played by ...more

50
3 6
Contempt is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Movies About Writers
Brigitte Bardot, Jack Palance, Jean-Luc Godard Contempt is a 1963 film directed by Jean-Luc Godard, based on the Italian novel A Ghost at Noon by Alberto Moravia. It stars Brigitte Bardot.