Best Directors by the Top 250by crunk_juice19 | created - 26 Aug 2012 | updated - 26 Aug 2012 | Public
I took the directors from the movies on the Top 250 and put them in order to basically make a list of the best directors. I've included all of their movies on the Top 250, and they appear in the order the movies do, minus the repeats.
#s of the Top 250 as of August 24, 2012.
Writer | The Green Mile
Three-time Oscar nominee Frank Darabont was born in a refugee camp in 1959 in Montbeliard, France, the son of Hungarian parents who had fled Budapest during the failed 1956 Hungarian revolution. Brought to America as an infant, he settled with his family in Los Angeles and attended Hollywood High ...
#1 - The Shawshank Redemption (1994) #69 - The Green Mile (1999)
Producer | Apocalypse Now
Francis Ford Coppola was born in 1939 in Detroit, Michigan, but grew up in a New York suburb in a creative, supportive Italian-American family. His father, Carmine Coppola, was a composer and musician. His mother, Italia Coppola (née Pennino), had been an actress. Francis Ford Coppola graduated ...
#2 - The Godfather (1972) #3 - The Godfather: Part II (1974) #36 - Apocalypse Now (1979)
Writer | Reservoir Dogs
Quentin Jerome Tarantino was born in Knoxville, Tennessee. His father, Tony Tarantino, is an Italian-American actor and musician from New York, and his mother, Connie (McHugh), is a nurse from Tennessee. Quentin moved with his mother to Torrance, California, when he was four years old.
In January of...
#4 - Pulp Fiction (1994) #67 - Reservoir Dogs (1992) #109 - Inglorious Basterds (2009) #134 - Sin City (2005) (guest director) #150 - Kill Bill: Vol. 1 (2003)
4. Sergio Leone
Writer | Once Upon a Time in America
Sergio Leone was virtually born into the cinema - he was the son of Roberto Roberti (A.K.A. Vincenzo Leone), one of Italy's cinema pioneers, and actress Bice Valerian. Leone entered films in his late teens, working as an assistant director to both Italian directors and U.S. directors working in ...
#5 - The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966) #22 - Once Upon a Time in the West (1968) #80 - Once Upon a Time in America (1984) #114 - For a Few Dollars More (1965) #221 - A Fistful of Dollars (1964)
5. Sidney Lumet
Director | 12 Angry Men
Sidney Lumet was a master of cinema, best known for his technical knowledge and his skill at getting first-rate performances from his actors -- and for shooting most of his films in his beloved New York. He made over 40 movies, often complex and emotional, but seldom overly sentimental. Although ...
#6 - 12 Angry Men (1957) #168 - Network (1976) #178 - Dog Day Afternoon (1975)
Producer | Schindler's List
One of the most influential personalities in the history of cinema, Steven Spielberg is Hollywood's best known director and one of the wealthiest filmmakers in the world. He has an extraordinary number of commercially successful and critically acclaimed credits to his name, either as a director, ...
#7 - Schindler's List (1993) #27 - Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) #137 - Jaws (1975)
Writer | Inception
Best known for his cerebral, often nonlinear, storytelling, acclaimed writer-director Christopher Nolan was born on July 30, 1970 in London, England. Over the course of 15 years of filmmaking, Nolan has gone from low-budget independent films to working on some of the biggest blockbusters ever made.
#8 - The Dark Knight (2008) #14 - Inception (2010) #21 - The Dark Knight Rises (2012) #34 - Memento (2000) #68 - The Prestige (2006) #108 - Batman Begins (2005)
Peter Jackson was born as an only child in a small coast-side town in New Zealand in 1961. When a friend of his parents bought him a super 8 movie camera (because she saw how much he enjoyed taking photos), the then eight-year-old Peter instantly grabbed the thing to start recording his own movies,...
#9 - The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) #13 - The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001) #24 - The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002)
Irvin Kershner was born on April 29, 1923 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. A graduate of the University of Southern California film school, Kershner began his career in 1950, producing documentaries for the United States Information Service in the Middle East. He later turned to television, directing...
#10 - Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
10. David Fincher
Director | Se7en
David Fincher was born in 1962 in Denver, Colorado, and was raised in Marin County, California. When he was 18 years old he went to work for John Korty at Korty Films in Mill Valley. He subsequently worked at ILM (Industrial Light and Magic) from 1981-1983. Fincher left ILM to direct TV commercials...
#11 - Fight Club (1999) #26 - Se7en (1995)
11. Milos Forman
Director | One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Milos Forman was born Jan Tomas Forman in Caslav, Czechoslovakia, to Anna (Svabova), who ran a summer hotel, and Rudolf Forman, a professor. During World War II, his parents were taken away by the Nazis, after being accused of participating in the underground resistance. His father died in ...
#12 - One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest (1975) #89 - Amadeus (1984)
12. Martin Scorsese
Director | Taxi Driver
Martin Charles Scorsese was born on November 17, 1942 in Queens, New York City, to Catherine Scorsese (née Cappa) and Charles Scorsese, who both worked in Manhattan's garment district, and whose families both came from Palermo, Sicily. He was raised in the neighborhood of Little Italy, which later ...
#15 - Goodfellas (1990) #47 - Taxi Driver (1976) #51 - The Departed (2006) #94 - Raging Bull (1980) #154 - Casino (1995) #235 - Shutter Island (2010)
13. George Lucas
Writer | Star Wars
George Walton Lucas, Jr. was raised on a walnut ranch in Modesto, California. His father was a stationery store owner and he had three siblings. During his late teen years, he went to Thomas Downey High School and was very much interested in drag racing. He planned to become a professional racecar ...
#16 - Star Wars (1977)
14. Akira Kurosawa
Writer | Ran
After training as a painter (he storyboards his films as full-scale paintings), Kurosawa entered the film industry in 1936 as an assistant director, eventually making his directorial debut with Sanshiro Sugata (1943). Within a few years, Kurosawa had achieved sufficient stature to allow him greater...
#17 - Seven Samurai (1954) #90 - Rashomon (1950) #116 - Yojimbo (1961) #131 - Ran (1985)
15. Lilly Wachowski
Writer | The Matrix
Director, writer and producer Lilly Wachowski was born in 1967 in Chicago as Andrew Wachowski, the son of Lynne, a nurse and painter and Ron, a businessman. Lilly was educated at Kellogg Elementary School in Chicago, before moving on to Whitney Young High School. After graduating from high school, ...
#18 - The Matrix (1999)
16. Lana Wachowski
Writer | The Matrix
Lana Wachowski and her sister Lilly Wachowski, (also known as 'The Wachowskis') are the duo behind ground-breaking movies such as The Matrix (1999) and Cloud Atlas (2012). Born to mother Lynne, a nurse, and father Ron, a businessman of Polish descent, Wachowski grew up in Chicago and formed a tight...
#18 - The Matrix (1999)
Director | Blindness
Fernando Meirelles was born in a middle class family in São Paulo City, Brazil.
He studied architecture at the university of São Paulo. At the same time he developed an interest in filmmaking. With a group of friends he started producing experimental videos and video art. They won a huge number of ...
#19 - City of God (2002)
18. Robert Zemeckis
Writer | Back to the Future
A whiz-kid with special effects, Robert is from the Spielberg camp of film-making (Steven Spielberg produced many of his films). Usually working with writing partner Bob Gale, Robert's earlier films show he has a talent for zany comedy (Romancing the Stone (1984), 1941 (1979)) and special effect ...
#20 - Forrest Gump (1994) #54 - Back to the Future (1985)
19. Michael Curtiz
Director | Casablanca
Curtiz began acting in and then directing films in his native Hungary in 1912. After WWI, he continued his filmmaking career in Austria and Germany and into the early 1920s when he directed films in other countries in Europe. Moving to the US in 1926, he started making films in Hollywood for Warner...
#23 - Casablanca (1942)
20. Jonathan Demme
Director | The Silence of the Lambs
Jonathan Demme was born on February 22, 1944 in Baldwin, Long Island, New York, USA as Robert Jonathan Demme. He was a director and producer, known for The Silence of the Lambs (1991), Rachel Getting Married (2008) and Philadelphia (1993). He was married to Joanne Howard and Evelyn Purcell. He died...
#25 - The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
21. Bryan Singer
Director | X-Men
Bryan Singer was born on September 17, 1965 in New York City, New York, USA as Bryan Jay Singer. He is a producer and director, known for X-Men (2000), The Usual Suspects (1995) and X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014).
#28 - The Usual Suspects (1995)
22. Alfred Hitchcock
Director | Psycho
Alfred Joseph Hitchcock was born in Leytonstone, Essex, England. He was the son of Emma Jane (Whelan; 1863 - 1942) and East End greengrocer William Hitchcock (1862 - 1914). His parents were both of half English and half Irish ancestry. He had two older siblings, William Hitchcock (born 1890) and ...
#29 - Rear Window (1954) #30 - Psycho (1960) #50 - Vertigo (1958) #54 - North by Northwest (1959) #122 - Rebecca (1940) #136 - Strangers on a Train (1951) #149 - Notorious (1946) #174 - Dial M for Murder (1954) #203 - Rope (1948) #227 - Shadow of a Doubt (1943)
23. Frank Capra
Director | It's a Wonderful Life
One of seven children, Frank Capra was born on May 18, 1897, in Bisacquino, Sicily. On May 10, 1903, his family left for America aboard the ship Germania, arriving in New York on May 23rd. "There's no ventilation, and it stinks like hell. They're all miserable. It's the most degrading place you ...
#31 - It's a Wonderful Life (1946) #107 - Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939) #140 - It Happened One Night (1934) #240 - Arsenic and Old Lace (1944)
24. Luc Besson
Writer | The Fifth Element
Luc Besson spent the first years of his life following his parents, scuba diving instructors, around the world. His early life was entirely aquatic. He already showed amazing creativity as a youth, writing early drafts of The Big Blue (1988) and The Fifth Element (1997), as an adolescent bored in ...
#32 - Leon: The Professional (1994)
25. Billy Wilder
Writer | The Apartment
Originally planning to become a lawyer, Billy Wilder abandoned that career in favor of working as a reporter for a Viennese newspaper, using this experience to move to Berlin, where he worked for the city's largest tabloid. He broke into films as a screenwriter in 1929 and wrote scripts for many ...
#33 - Sunset Blvd. (1950) #56 - Double Indemnity (1944) #84 - Some Like It Hot (1959) #96 - The Apartment (1960) #106 - Witness for the Prosecution (1957) #197 - Stalag 17 (1953)
26. Tony Kaye
Director | Detachment
Tony Kaye was born in London, United Kingdom. He has made several well-known music videos, including the video for "Runaway Train" by Soul Asylum, which won a Grammy Award, "Dani California" by Red Hot Chili Peppers, "What God Wants" by Roger Waters, and "Help Me" and "God's Gonna Cut You Down" by ...
#35 - American History X (1998)
27. James Cameron
Writer | Avatar
James Francis Cameron was born on August 16, 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada. He moved to the United States in 1971. The son of an engineer, he majored in physics at California State University before switching to English, and eventually dropping out. He then drove a truck to support his ...
#37 - Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991) #57 - Aliens (1986) #170 - The Terminator (1984)
28. Stanley Kubrick
Director | 2001: A Space Odyssey
Stanley Kubrick was born in Manhattan, New York City, to Sadie Gertrude (Perveler) and Jacob Leonard Kubrick, a physician. His family were Jewish immigrants (from Austria, Romania, and Russia). Stanley was considered intelligent, despite poor grades at school. Hoping that a change of scenery would ...
#38 - Dr. Strangelove (1964) #45 - The Shining (1980) #55 - Paths of Glory (1957) #61 - A Clockwork Orange (1971) #81 - Full Metal Jacket (1987) #98 - 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968) #188 - The Killing (1956) #204 - Barry Lyndon (1975)
29. Ridley Scott
Producer | The Martian
Described by film producer Michael Deeley as "the very best eye in the business", director Ridley Scott was born on November 30, 1937 in South Shields, Tyne and Wear (then County Durham). His father was an officer in the Royal Engineers and the family followed him as his career posted him ...
#41 - Alien (1979) #66 - Gladiator (2000) #125 - Blade Runner (1982)
30. Charles Chaplin
Writer | The Great Dictator
Considered to be one of the most pivotal stars of the early days of Hollywood, Charlie Chaplin lived an interesting life both in his films and behind the camera. He is most recognized as an icon of the silent film era, often associated with his popular character, the Little Tramp; the man with the ...
#42 - City Lights (1931) #49 - Modern Times (1936) #70 - The Great Dictator (1940) #130 - The Kid (1921) #138 - The Gold Rush (1925)
31. Orson Welles
Actor | Citizen Kane
His father was a well-to-do inventor, his mother a beautiful concert pianist; Orson Welles was gifted in many arts (magic, piano, painting) as a child. When his mother died (he was six) he traveled the world with his father. He was orphaned at 15 after his father's death and became the ward of Dr. ...
#43 - Citizen Kane (1941) #128 - Touch of Evil (1958)
32. Hayao Miyazaki
Director | Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi
Hayao Miyazaki is one of Japan's greatest animation directors. The entertaining plots, compelling characters, and breathtaking animation in his films have earned him international renown from critics as well as public recognition within Japan. The Walt Disney Company's commitment to introduce the ...
#44 - Spirited Away (2001) #101 - Princess Mononoke (1997) #175 - My Neighbor Totoro (1988) #194 - Howl's Moving Castle (2004) #228 - Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (1984) #246 - Castle in the Sky (1986)
33. Sam Mendes
Director | Skyfall
Samuel Alexander Mendes was born on August 1, 1965 in Reading, England, UK to parents James Peter Mendes, a retired university lecturer, and Valerie Helene Mendes, an author who writes children's books. Their marriage didn't last long, James divorced Sam's mother in 1970 when Sam was just 5-...
#46 - American Beauty (1999)
34. Lee Unkrich
Editor | Coco
Lee Unkrich is an Academy Award-winning director at Pixar Animation Studios. He most recently directed Disney.Pixar's critically-acclaimed "Coco", which received the Academy Award for Best Animated Feature and Best Song.
As the director of Disney.Pixar's "Toy Story 3," Lee was also awarded an ...
#48 - Toy Story 3 (2010) #167 - Finding Nemo (2003) #223 - Monsters, Inc. (2001)
35. Roman Polanski
Actor | Chinatown
Roman Polanski is a Polish film director, producer, writer and actor. Having made films in Poland, Britain, France and the USA, he is considered one of the few truly international filmmakers. Roman Polanski was born in Paris in 1933.
His parents returned to Poland from France in 1936, three years ...
#52 - The Pianist (2002) #76 - Chinatown (1974) #219 - Rosemary's Baby (1968)
36. Fritz Lang
Actor | Le mépris
Fritz Lang was born in Vienna, Austria, in 1890. His father managed a construction company. His mother, Pauline Schlesinger, was Jewish but converted to Catholicism when Lang was ten. After high school, he enrolled briefly at the Technische Hochschule Wien and then started to train as a painter. ...
#53 - M (1931 #91 - Metropolis (1927)
37. Andrew Stanton
Writer | WALL·E
Oscar-winning filmmaker Andrew Stanton was raised in Rockport, Massachusetts. He was educated at The California Institute of the Arts (or "CalArts") in Los Angeles, where he studied character animation. After graduation, Stanton began working as a writer on the TV series Mighty Mouse: The New ...
#58 - WALL-E (2008) #167 - Finding Nemo (2001)
38. Roberto Benigni
Actor | La vita è bella
Roberto Benigni was born on October 27, 1952 in Manciano La Misericordia, Castiglion Fiorentino, Tuscany, Italy as Roberto Remigio Benigni. He is an actor and writer, known for Life Is Beautiful (1997), The Tiger and the Snow (2005) and Down by Law (1986). He has been married to Nicoletta Braschi ...
#59 - Life Is Beautiful (1997)
Director | Das Leben der Anderen
Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck was born on May 2, 1973 in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany as Florian Maria Georg Christian Graf Henckel von Donnersmarck. He is a director and writer, known for The Lives of Others (2006), The Tourist (2010) and Never Look Away (2018). He is married to ...
#60 - The Lives of Others (2006)
Director | Un long dimanche de fiançailles
Jean-Pierre Jeunet is a self-taught director who was very quickly interested by cinema, with a predilection for a fantastic cinema where form is as important as the subject. Thus he started directing TV commercials and video clips (such as Julien Clerc in 1984). At the same time he met designer/...
#62 - Amelie (2001)
41. Robert Mulligan
Director | To Kill a Mockingbird
Robert Mulligan was born on August 23, 1925 in The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA as Robert Patrick Mulligan Jr. He was a director and producer, known for To Kill a Mockingbird (1962), Summer of '42 (1971) and The Other (1972). He was married to Sandy Mulligan and Jane Lee Sutherland. He died ...
#63 - To Kill a Mockingbird (1962)
42. David Lean
Director | Lawrence of Arabia
An important British filmmaker, David Lean was born in Croydon on March 25, 1908 and brought up in a strict Quaker family (ironically, as a child he wasn't allowed to go to the movies). During the 1920s, he briefly considered the possibility of becoming an accountant like his father before finding ...
#64 - Lawrence of Arabia (1962) #97 - The Bridge on the River Kwai (1957)
43. Joss Whedon
Writer | Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Joss Whedon is the middle of five brothers - his younger brothers are Jed Whedon and Zack Whedon. Both his father, Tom Whedon and his grandfather, John Whedon were successful television writers. Joss' mother, Lee Stearns, was a history teacher and she also wrote novels as Lee Whedon. Whedon was ...
#65 - The Avengers (2012)
Director | Das Boot
This director seems to shine most when making movies that can best be described as part action movies/part disaster movies.
Beginning with Outbreak (1995) about the outbreak of a killer virus. This film had shades of an Irwin Allen disaster movie, The Swarm (1978), about the outbreak of killer bees....
#71 - Das Boot (1981)
45. Darren Aronofsky
Director | Pi
Darren Aronofsky was born February 12, 1969, in Brooklyn, New York. Growing up, Darren was always artistic: he loved classic movies and, as a teenager, he even spent time doing graffiti art. After high school, Darren went to Harvard University to study film (both live-action and animation). He won ...
#72 - Requiem for a Dream (2000) #158 - Black Swan (2010) #214 - The Wrestler (2008)
46. Carol Reed
Director | The Third Man
Carol Reed was the second son of stage actor, dramatics teacher and impresario founder of the Royal School of Dramatic Arts Sir Herbert Beerbohm Tree. Reed was one of Tree's six illegitimate children with Beatrice Mae Pinney, who Tree established in a second household apart from his married life. ...
#73 - The Third Man (1949)
47. Michel Gondry
Director | Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
He grew up in Versailles with a family who was very influenced by pop music. When he was young, Gondry wanted to be a painter or an inventor. In the 80s he entered in an art school in Paris where he could develop his graphic skills and where he also met friends with whom he created a pop-rock band ...
#74 - Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind (2004)
48. John Huston
Director | The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
An eccentric rebel of epic proportions, this Hollywood titan reigned supreme as director, screenwriter and character actor in a career that endured over five decades. The ten-time Oscar-nominated legend was born John Marcellus Huston in Nevada, Missouri, on August 5, 1906. His ancestry was English,...
#75 - The Treasure of the Sierra Madre (1948) #119 - The Maltese Falcon (1941)
Writer | La leggenda del pianista sull'oceano
#77 - Cinema Paradiso (1988)
50. Curtis Hanson
Director | L.A. Confidential
After small films like The Bedroom Window (1987) and Sweet Kill (1972), Curtis Hanson went on to direct major features including The Hand That Rocks the Cradle (1992), The River Wild (1994) and the Academy Award-winning L.A. Confidential (1997). Setting his sights on another city, Hanson was ...
#78 - L.A. Confidential (1997)
51. Olivier Nakache
Writer | Intouchables
#79 - The Intouchables (2011)
52. Éric Toledano
Writer | Intouchables
#79 - The Intouchables (2011)
53. Terry Gilliam
Writer | Brazil
Terry Gilliam was born near Medicine Lake, Minnesota. When he was 12 his family moved to Los Angeles where he became a fan of MAD magazine. In his early twenties he was often stopped by the police who suspected him of being a drug addict and Gilliam had to explain that he worked in advertising. In ...
#82 - Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) #180 - Twelve Monkeys (1995)
54. Terry Jones
Writer | Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Terry Jones was born in Colwyn Bay, North Wales. His father was a bank clerk, mother - mistress of the house. He has an older brother, Nigel Jones (1940-). He studied at St. Edmund Hall College, Oxford University. In 1965, with his friend Michael Palin, he made The Late Show (1966) for television, ...
#82 - Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975) #161 - Life of Brian (1979)
55. Richard Marquand
Director | Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi
Richard Marquand was born on September 22, 1937 in Llanishen, Cardiff, Glamorgan, Wales as Richard Alfred Marquand. He was a director and producer, known for Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983), Jagged Edge (1985) and Nowhere to Run (1993). He was married to Carol Bell and Josephine ...
#83 - Star Wars: Episode VI - Return of the Jedi (1983)
56. Mel Gibson
Actor | Braveheart
Mel Columcille Gerard Gibson was born January 3, 1956 in Peekskill, New York, USA, as the sixth of eleven children of Hutton Gibson, a railroad brakeman, and Anne Patricia (Reilly) Gibson (who died in December of 1990). His mother was Irish, from County Longford, while his American-born father is ...
#85 - Braveheart (1995)
57. Stanley Donen
Director | Charade
Inspired by Fred Astaire's dancing in Flying Down to Rio (1933), Stanley Donen (pronounced 'Dawn-en') attended dance classes from the age of ten. He later recalled that the only thing he wanted to be was a tap dancer.
He was born in Columbia, South Carolina, to Helen Pauline (Cohen) and Mordecai ...
#86 - Singin' in the Rain (1952)
58. Gene Kelly
Soundtrack | Singin' in the Rain
Eugene Curran Kelly was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, the third son of Harriet Catherine (Curran) and James Patrick Joseph Kelly, a phonograph salesman. His father was of Irish descent and his mother was of Irish and German ancestry.
Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer was the largest and most powerful studio in...
#86 - Singin' in the Rain (1952)
59. Roger Allers
Director | The Lion King
#87 - The Lion King (1994)
60. Rob Minkoff
Director | The Lion King
Rob Minkoff was born on August 11, 1962 in Palo Alto, California, USA as Robert Ralph Minkoff. He is a producer and director, known for The Lion King (1994), Stuart Little 2 (2002) and The Forbidden Kingdom (2008). He has been married to Crystal Kung since September 29, 2007.
#87 - The Lion King (1994)
61. Chan-wook Park
Director | Ah-ga-ssi
Chan-wook Park was born on August 23, 1963 in Seoul, South Korea. He is a director and producer, known for The Handmaiden (2016), Thirst (2009) and Oldboy (2003). He is married to Eun-hee Kim. They have one child.
#88 - Oldboy (2003)
62. Vittorio De Sica
Director | Ladri di biciclette
Vittorio De Sica grew up in Naples, and started out as an office clerk in order to raise money to support his poor family. He was increasingly drawn towards acting, and made his screen debut while still in his teens, joining a stage company in 1923. By the late 1920s he was a successful matinee ...
#92 - Bicycle Thieves (1948)
Writer | All About Eve
Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on February 11, 1909, Joseph Leo Mankiewicz first worked for the movies as a translator of intertitles, employed by Paramount in Berlin, the UFA's American distributor at the time (1928). He became a dialoguist, then a screenwriter on numerous Paramount ...
#93 - All About Eve (1950)
64. Clint Eastwood
Actor | Million Dollar Baby
Clint Eastwood was born May 31, 1930 in San Francisco, the son of Clinton Eastwood Sr., a manufacturing executive for Georgia-Pacific Corporation, and Ruth Wood, a housewife turned IBM operator. He had a comfortable, middle-class upbringing in nearby Piedmont. At school Clint took interest in music...
#95 - Unforgiven (1992) #121 - Gran Torino (2008) #172 - Million Dollar Baby (2004) #231 - Mystic River (2003)
65. George Roy Hill
Director | The Sting
George Roy Hill was never able to 'hit it off' with the critics despite the fact that 2 of his films - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969), and The Sting (1973) - had remained among the top 10 box office hits by 1976. His work was frequently derided as 'impersonal' or lacking in stylistic ...
#99 - The Sting (1973) #145 - Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969)
66. Asghar Farhadi
Writer | Darbareye Elly
Asghar Farhadi was born in 1972 in Iran. He became interested in cinema in his teenage years and started his filmmaking education by joining the Youth Cinema Society of Esfahan in 1986 where he made 8mm and 16mm short films. He received his Bachelors in Theater from University of Tehran's School of...
#102 - A Separation (2011)
Writer | El laberinto del fauno
Guillermo del Toro was born October 9, 1964 in Guadalajara Jalisco, Mexico. Raised by his Catholic grandmother, del Toro developed an interest in filmmaking in his early teens. Later, he learned about makeup and effects from the legendary Dick Smith (The Exorcist (1973)) and worked on making his ...
#103 - Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
68. John McTiernan
Director | Die Hard
John McTiernan was born on January 8, 1951 in Albany, New York, USA as John Campbell McTiernan Jr. He is a director and producer, known for Die Hard (1988), Predator (1987) and Last Action Hero (1993). He has been married to Gail Sistrunk since 2012. He was previously married to Kate Harrington, ...
#104 - Die Hard (1988)
Director | Das Experiment
Born in Hamburg, Germany, in 1957. In his teens he left high school and worked as a cooker in a boat.
Then he studied painting and graphism in the Academy of arts in Hamburg where he also started experimenting with video and photography. Those experimental movies attracted the attention of some ...
#105 - Downfall (2004)
70. Isao Takahata
Director | Hotaru no haka
Isao Takahata was born on October 29, 1935 in Ise, Mie, Japan. He was a director and writer, known for Grave of the Fireflies (1988), The Tale of The Princess Kaguya (2013) and Only Yesterday (1991). He died on April 5, 2018 in Tokyo, Japan.
#111 - Grave of the Fireflies (1988)
71. Pete Docter
Writer | Up
Pete Docter was born on October 9, 1968 in Bloomington, Minnesota, USA as Peter Hans Docter. He is a producer and writer, known for Up (2009), Inside Out (2015) and Monsters, Inc. (2001). He has been married to Amanda Jean Schmidt since December 27, 1992. They have two children.
#112 - Up (2009) #223 - Monsters, Inc. (2001)
72. Bob Peterson
Actor | Up
Bob Peterson was born in Wooster, Ohio, USA, in 1961. He studied mechanical engineering at Ohio Northern University, where he took computer graphics courses and graduated in 1983. He continued his studies in mechanical engineering at Purdue University where he earned a master's degree in 1986. ...
#112 - Up (2009)
73. David Lynch
Writer | Twin Peaks
Born in precisely the kind of small-town American setting so familiar from his films, David Lynch spent his childhood being shunted from one state to another as his research scientist father kept getting relocated. He attended various art schools, married Peggy Lynch and then fathered future ...
#113 - The Elephant Man (1980)
74. Elia Kazan
Director | On the Waterfront
Known for his creative stage direction, Elia Kazan was born Elias Kazantzoglou on September 7, 1909 in Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (now Istanbul, Turkey). Noted for drawing out the best dramatic performances from his actors, he directed 21 actors to Oscar nominations, resulting in nine wins. He ...
#115 - On the Waterfront (1954) #221 - A Streetcar Named Desire (1951)
75. Guy Ritchie
Director | Sherlock Holmes
Guy Ritchie was born in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK on September 10, 1968. After watching Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid (1969) as a child, Guy realized that what he wanted to do was make films. He never attended film school, saying that the work of film school graduates was boring and ...
#117 - Snatch. (2000) #146 - Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels (1998)
76. Ingmar Bergman
Writer | Smultronstället
Ernst Ingmar Bergman was born July 14, 1918, the son of a priest. The film and T.V. series, The Best Intentions (1992) is biographical and shows the early marriage of his parents. The film 'Söndagsbarn' depicts a bicycle journey with his father. In the miniseries Private Confessions (1996) is the ...
#118 - The Seventh Seal (1957) #126 - Wild Strawberries (1957) #189 - Persona (1966)
77. Michael Mann
Producer | The Insider
A student of London's International Film School, Michael Mann began his career in the late 70s, writing for TV shows like Starsky and Hutch (1975). He directed his first film, the award-winning prison drama The Jericho Mile (1979), in 1979. He followed that in 1981 with his first theatrical release,...
#120 - Heat (1995)
78. Clyde Bruckman
Writer | The General
Had been out of work and was pretty much broke when he killed himself. He borrowed Buster Keaton's gun and after eating a meal that he could not pay for, shot himself. There are two stories; One says it was in the restroom of the cafe on Santa Monica Blvd, and the other story states he did it in ...
#123 - The General (1926)
79. Buster Keaton
Actor | The General
Joseph Frank Keaton was born on October 4, 1895 in Piqua, Kansas, to Joe Keaton and Myra Keaton. Joe and Myra were Vaudevillian comedians with a popular, ever-changing variety act, giving Keaton an eclectic and interesting upbringing. In the earliest days on stage, they traveled with a medicine ...
#123 - The General (1926)
80. John Lasseter
Writer | Toy Story 2
Although born in Hollywood John and his twin sister, Johanna were raised in Wittier near Los Angeles. His parents were Jewell Mae (Risley), an art teacher, and Paul Eual Lasseter, a parts manager at a Chevrolet dealership. His mother's profession contributed to his interest in animation and ...
#124 - Toy Story (1995)
81. Joel Coen
Producer | The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Joel Coen was born on November 29, 1954 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA as Joel Daniel Coen. He is a producer and writer, known for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), Fargo (1996) and Inside Llewyn Davis (2013). He has been married to Frances McDormand since April 1, 1984. They have one child.
#127 - Fargo (1996) #129 - The Big Lebowski (1998) #139 - No Country for Old Men (2007)
82. Ethan Coen
Producer | The Ballad of Buster Scruggs
Ethan Coen was born on September 21, 1957 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA as Ethan Jesse Coen. He is a producer and writer, known for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), Inside Llewyn Davis (2013) and A Serious Man (2009). He has been married to Tricia Cooke since October 2, 1990. They have two ...
#139 - No Country for Old Men (2007)
83. Brian De Palma
Director | Dressed to Kill
Brian De Palma is the son of a surgeon. He studied physics but at the same time felt his dedication for the movies and made some short films. After seven independent productions he had his first success with Sisters (1972) and his voyeuristic style. Restlessly he worked on big projects with the ...
#132 - Scarface (1983) #244 - The Untouchables (1987)
84. Stuart Rosenberg
Director | Cool Hand Luke
Stuart Rosenberg was born on August 11, 1927 in Brooklyn, New York City, New York, USA. He was a director and producer, known for Cool Hand Luke (1967), Question 7 (1961) and The Defenders (1961). He was married to Margot Pohoryles. He died on March 15, 2007 in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, ...
#133 - Cool Hand Luke (1967)
85. Frank Miller
Writer | Sin City
Frank Miller was born in Olney, Maryland, to a nurse mother and a carpenter and electrician father, and was raised in Montpelier, Vermont. He is of Irish descent. Miller was a big comics writer/artist in the '70s and '80s. He wrote and penciled the Marvel series "Daredevil" for a long time. His ...
#134 - Sin City (2005)
86. Robert Rodriguez
Producer | El mariachi
Robert Anthony Rodriguez was born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, USA, to Rebecca (Villegas), a nurse, and Cecilio G. Rodríguez, a salesman. His family is of Mexican descent.
Of all the people to be amazed by the images of John Carpenter's 1981 sci-fi parable, Escape from New York (1981), none ...
#134 - Sin City (2005)
87. Michael Cimino
Writer | The Deer Hunter
Michael Cimino studied architecture and dramatic arts; later he filmed advertisements and documentaries and also wrote scripts until the actor, producer and director Clint Eastwood gave him the opportunity to direct the thriller Thunderbolt and Lightfoot (1974). But his biggest success was The Deer...
#135 - The Deer Hunter (1978)
88. Terry George
Writer | Hotel Rwanda
Terry George was born on December 20, 1952 in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He is a writer and producer, known for Hotel Rwanda (2004), In the Name of the Father (1993) and Some Mother's Son (1996). He has been married to Margaret Higgins since 1978. They have two children.
#141 - Hotel Rwanda (2004)
89. Fred Zinnemann
Director | A Man for All Seasons
Initially grew up wanting to be a violinist, but while at the University of Vienna decided to study law. While doing so, he became increasingly interested in American film and decided that was what he wanted to do. He became involved in European filmaking for a short time before going to America to...
#142 - High Noon (1952)
Producer | Lady in the Water
Born in Puducherry, India, and raised in the posh suburban Penn Valley area of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, M. Night Shyamalan is a film director, screenwriter, producer, and occasional actor, known for making movies with contemporary supernatural plots.
He is the son of Jayalakshmi, a Tamil ...
#143 - The Sixth Sense (1999)
91. Oliver Stone
Producer | JFK
Oliver Stone has become known as a master of controversial subjects and a legendary film maker. His films are filled with a variety of film angles and styles, he pushes his actors to give Oscar-worthy performances, and despite his failures, has always returned to success.
William Oliver Stone was ...
#144 - Platoon (1986)
92. Victor Fleming
Director | Gone with the Wind
Victor Fleming entered the film business as a stuntman in 1910, mainly doing stunt driving - which came easy to him, as he had been a mechanic and professional race-car driver. He became interested in working on the other side of the camera, and eventually got a job as a cameraman on many of the ...
#147 - The Wizard of Oz (1939) #159 - Gone with the Wind (1939)
93. George Cukor
Director | My Fair Lady
George Cukor was born on July 7, 1899 in Lower East Side, Manhattan, New York City, New York, USA as George Dewey Cukor. He is known for his work on My Fair Lady (1964), The Philadelphia Story (1940) and A Star Is Born (1954). He died on January 24, 1983 in Beverly Grove, Los Angeles, California, ...
#147 - The Wizard of Oz (1939) (uncredited) #159 - Gone with the Wind (1939) (uncredited) #250 - The Philadelphia Story (1940)
94. Mervyn LeRoy
Director | Gypsy
The great San Francisco earthquake and fire of 1906 was a tragedy for Mervyn LeRoy. While he and his father managed to survive, they lost everything they had. To make money, LeRoy sold newspapers and entered talent contests as a singer. When he entered vaudeville, his act was "LeRoy and Cooper--Two...
#147 - The Wizard of Oz (1939) (uncredited)
95. Norman Taurog
Director | The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
A successful child actor (on stage from 1907) and rather less successful romantic lead, baby-faced Norman Taurog found being behind the camera a more rewarding experience. Before becoming a director, he paid his dues as a prop man and editor. By 1919, he was put in charge of two-reel comedies, ...
#147 - The Wizard of Oz (1939) (uncredited)
96. King Vidor
Director | Hallelujah
King Vidor was an American film director, film producer, and screenwriter of Hungarian descent. He was born in Galveston, Texas to lumberman Charles Shelton Vidor and his wife Kate Wallis. King's paternal grandfather Károly (Charles) Vidor had fled Hungary as a refugee following the failed ...
#147 - The Wizard of Oz (1939) (uncredited)
97. Sam Wood
Director | A Night at the Opera
Following a two-year apprenticeship under Cecil B. DeMille as assistant director, Samuel Grosvenor Wood had the good fortune to have assigned to him two of the biggest stars at Paramount during their heyday: Wallace Reid (between 1919 and 1920) and Gloria Swanson (from 1921 to 1923). By the time ...
#159 - Gone with the Wind (1939) (uncredited)
98. John Carpenter
Soundtrack | Escape from New York
John Howard Carpenter was born in Carthage, New York, to mother Milton Jean (Carter) and father Howard Ralph Carpenter. His family moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky, where his father, a professor, was head of the music department at Western Kentucky University. He attended Western Kentucky ...
#148 - The Thing (1982)
99. Danny Boyle
Director | 127 Hours
#151 - Trainspotting (1996) #186 - Slumdog Millionaire (2008)
100. Woody Allen
Writer | Manhattan
Woody Allen was born Allan Stewart Konigsberg on December 1, 1935 in Brooklyn, New York, to Nettie (Cherrie), a bookkeeper, and Martin Konigsberg, a waiter and jewellery engraver. His father was of Russian Jewish descent, and his maternal grandparents were Austrian Jewish immigrants. As a young boy...
#152 - Annie Hall (1977) #230 - Manhattan (1979)