The Best Directorsby SeaBassEon | created - 11 Apr 2015 | updated - 11 months ago | Public
My favorite directors
Writer | Dunkirk
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.
Interstellar, Inception, The Prestige, Insomnia, Memento, Following, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises
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 ...
The Wolf of Wall Street, Shutter Island, The Departed, Gangs of New York, Casino, Goodfellas, Raging Bull, Taxi Driver
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...
Pulp Fiction, Kill Bill, Reservoir Dogs, Django Unchained, Inglourious Basterds, Jackie Brown
4. 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 ...
Blade Runner, Gladiator, Alien, Fly II, Amercian Gangster, Robin Hood, The Grey, Black Hawk Down, White Squall, Thelma et Louise
Director | The Fly
David Cronenberg, also known as the King of Venereal Horror or the Baron of Blood, was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1943. His father, Milton Cronenberg, was a journalist and editor, and his mother, Esther (Sumberg), was a piano player. After showing an inclination for literature at an early...
The Fly, eXistenZ, Eastern Promise, A History of Violence, A Dangerous Method, Cosmopolis, Crash, Naked Lunch
6. 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 ...
Platoon, JFK, Natural Born Killers, Savages, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, W., Wall Street
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, ...
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, Jaws, Lincoln, Saving Private Ryan, Jurassik Park, Schindler's List, Munich, War of the Worlds, Catch me if you Can, Minority Report, Artificial Intelligence: AI
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 ...
The Godfather, Apocalypse Now, Dracula, On the Road(exe.pr.)
9. Xavier Dolan
Actor | Tom à la ferme
Xavier Dolan was born on March 20, 1989 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada as Xavier Dolan-Tadros. He is an actor and writer, known for Tom at the Farm (2013), Heartbeats (2010) and I Killed My Mother (2009).
J'ai Tué ma Mère, Les Amours Imaginaires, Laurence Anyways, Tom à la Ferme, Mommy
10. 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 ...
A Clockwork Orange, The Shinning, Full Metal Jacket, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Eyes Wide Shut
11. Ron Howard
Actor | Arrested Development
Academy Award-winning filmmaker Ron Howard is one of this generation's most popular directors. From the critically acclaimed dramas A Beautiful Mind (2001) and Apollo 13 (1995) to the hit comedies Parenthood (1989) and Splash (1984), he has created some of Hollywood's most memorable films.
A Beautiful Mind, Rush, Arrested Development, Angels and Demons, Frost/Nixon, The Da Vinci Code, Inside Deep Throat, The Doors, Cocoon,
12. Lars von Trier
Writer | Dancer in the Dark
Probably the most ambitious and visually distinctive filmmaker to emerge from Denmark since Carl Theodor Dreyer over 60 years earlier, Lars von Trier studied film at the Danish Film School and attracted international attention with his very first feature, The Element of Crime (1984). A highly ...
Dogville, Dancer in the Dark, Nymphomaniac, Breaking the Waves
13. Danny Boyle
Director | 127 Hours
Slumdog Millionaire, Trainspotting, 127 Hours, 28 Days Later
14. 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 ...
Star Wars, (work on Indiana Jones)
15. Frank Darabont
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 ...
The Walking Dead, Shawshank Redemption, The Green Mile
16. Clint Eastwood
Actor | Unforgiven
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...
American Sniper, Gran Torino, Million Dollar Baby, Mystic River
18. Gus Van Sant
Director | Elephant
Gus Van Sant was born on July 24, 1952 in Louisville, Kentucky, USA as Gus Greene Van Sant Junior. He is a director and producer, known for Elephant (2003), My Own Private Idaho (1991) and Drugstore Cowboy (1989).
Good Will Hunting, Milk, Elephant, Paris, Je t'aime
19. Denis Villeneuve
Director | Blade Runner 2049
Denis Villeneuve is a French Canadian film director and writer. He was born in 1967, in Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada. He started his career as a filmmaker at the National Film Board of Canada. He is best known for his feature films Arrival (2016), Sicario (2015), Prisoners (2013), Enemy (2013), ...
Polytechnique, Enemy, Incendies, Prisoners
20. 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 ...
The Fifth Element, Léon (The Professional), Lucy, Le Grand Bleu
21. Sofia Coppola
Director | Lost in Translation
Sofia Coppola was born on May 14, 1971 in New York City, New York, USA as Sofia Carmina Coppola. She is a director, known for Somewhere (2010), Lost in Translation (2003) and Marie Antoinette (2006). She has been married to Thomas Mars since August 27, 2011. They have two children. She was ...
Lost in Translation, Marie Antoinette
22. Denys Arcand
Writer | Les invasions barbares
One of Québec's most politically aware filmmakers, Denys Arcand studied history at Université de Montréal, where he co-directed Alone or with Others (1962) with Denis Héroux and co-written with Stéphane Venne. He joined the National Film Board (NFB) in 1963, where his feature-length documentary on ...
Les Invasions Barbares, Jésus de Montréal, Le Déclin de l'Empire Américain, L'Âge des Ténèbres
23. 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 ...
Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
24. Jim Jarmusch
Director | Broken Flowers
Moved to New York City at the age of seventeen from Akron, Ohio. Graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in English, class of '75. Without any prior film experience, he was accepted into the Tisch School of the Arts, New York.
Coffee and Cigarettes, Broken Flowers, Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai
25. 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 ...
Mulholland Dr., Dune, Eraserhead,
Director | There Will Be Blood
Anderson was born in 1970. He was one of the first of the "video store" generation of film-makers. His father was the first man on his block to own a V.C.R., and from a very early age Anderson had an infinite number of titles available to him. While film-makers like Spielberg cut their teeth making...
There Will be Blood; Magnolia, Cigarettes & Coffee, Punch-Drunk Love
Director | The Good Lie
After studying Canadian politics and international relations, Philippe Falardeau was chosen in 1993 as a contestant for the popular TV series La course destination monde (1988) (a contest were the participants tour the world making short films). There, he shot 20 films and ended up winning the race...
The Good Lie, Monsieur Lazhar, C'est pas Moi, je le Jure!, Congorama, La Moitié Gauche du Frigo
28. 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 ...
Scarface, Mission: Impossible
Producer | The Revenant
Alejandro González Iñárritu (ih-nyar-ee-too), born August 15th, 1963, is a Mexican film director.
González Iñárritu is the first Mexican director to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director and by the Directors Guild of America for Best Director. He is also the first Mexican-born ...
Birdman, The Revenant, Babel
30. 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 ...
31. Abel Ferrara
Director | Bad Lieutenant
Born in the Bronx, Ferrara started making amateur films on Super 8 in his teens before making his debut with violent exploitation films such as 'Driller Killer' and 'Ms.45'. Good reviews for the latter helped create his cult reputation, leading to larger budgets, studio funding and 'name' actors (...
32. Alex Garland
Writer | Ex Machina
Alex Garland is an English novelist, screenwriter, film producer and director. He is best known for the films Ex Machina (2015) and Annihilation (2018).
Garland's others works as a writer includes The Beach (2000), 28 Days Later (2002), Sunshine (2007), Never Let Me Go (2011) and Dredd (2012).
He is ...
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 ...
34. Noah Baumbach
Writer | Marriage Story
Born in Brooklyn in 1969 Noah Baumbach is the son of two film critics, Georgia Brown and Jonathan Baumbach (also a writer). His studies at Vassar College were the subject of his first film (made as he was 26 years old), Kicking and Screaming (1995). His second major picture, made ten years later, ...
35. 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 A Serious Man (2009). He has been married to Frances McDormand since April 1, 1984. They have one child.