Promising Directors

by Neutrino_Bomb_Squad | created - 05 Apr 2015 | updated - 12 Jul 2015 | Public

1. Adam Wingard

Director | You're Next

At 19 Adam got his start in feature film making early with his directorial debut Home Sick, a slasher horror film starring Bill Moseley and Tom Toweles. However it was his second effort at 24 years old with the film Pop Skull that garnered him a talent to watch. Made for a budget of around 2000 ...

2. Alex Garland

Writer | Ex Machina

Alex Garland was born on May 26, 1970 in London, England. He is a writer and producer, known for Ex Machina (2014), 28 Days Later... (2002) and Never Let Me Go (2010). He is married to Paloma Baeza. They have two children.

3. Andrew Dominik

Director | Chopper

Andrew Dominik was born on October 7, 1967 in Wellington, New Zealand. He is a director and writer, known for Chopper (2000), Killing Them Softly (2012) and The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007).

4. Ben Affleck

Producer | Argo

American actor and filmmaker Benjamin Géza Affleck-Boldt was born on August 15, 1972 in Berkeley, California, and was raised in Cambridge, Massachusetts. His mother, Chris Anne (née Boldt), is a school teacher, and his father, Timothy Byers Affleck, is a social worker; the two are divorced. Ben has...

5. Cary Fukunaga

Producer | Beasts of No Nation

Cary Fukunaga was born on July 10, 1977 in Oakland, California, USA as Cary Joji Fukunaga. He is a producer and director, known for Beasts of No Nation (2015), Sin Nombre (2009) and True Detective (2014).

6. Colin Trevorrow

Writer | Jurassic World

Born in San Francisco and raised in Oakland, Colin Trevorrow started making short films when he was 12 years old. He studied film and dramatic writing at New York University. After graduation, he wrote and directed "Home Base" a digital short that became one of the early viral successes on the ...

7. Damien Chazelle

Writer | La La Land

Damien Sayre Chazelle is an American director and screenwriter. He was born in Providence, Rhode Island. His mother, Celia Sayre (Martin) Chazelle, is an American-Canadian writer and professor of history at The College of New Jersey. His father, Bernard Chazelle, is a French-American Eugene Higgins...

8. David Ayer

Writer | End of Watch

David Ayer is an American film director, producer, and screenwriter. David Ayer was born in Champaign, Illinois and grew up in Bloomington, Minnesota, and Bethesda, Maryland, where he was kicked out of his house by his parents as a teenager. Ayer then lived with his cousin in Los Angeles, ...

9. David Gordon Green

Producer | George Washington

David Gordon Green was born on April 9, 1975 in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA. He is a producer and director, known for George Washington (2000), Prince Avalanche (2013) and Joe (2013).

10. David Robert Mitchell

Writer | It Follows

David Robert Mitchell is an American director mainly known for the breakout horror film ''It Follows'' which had its world premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2014. in 2002, Mitchell wrote and directed ''Virgin'' a short film featuring Carolina Castro and Cameron Diskin about a local legend...

11. Derek Cianfrance

Director | Blue Valentine

Derek Cianfrance began making movies at age 13. He later attended The University of Colorado where he studied under avant-garde film legends Stan Brakhage and Phil Solomon. His first three films, 'Five O'clock Shadow', 'Raw Footage', and Brother Tied (1998), won consecutive Goldfarb Awards for best...

12. Don Hertzfeldt

Animation_department | World of Tomorrow

Don Hertzfeldt was born on August 1, 1976 in Fremont, California, USA as Donald Charles Hertzfeldt. He is known for his work on World of Tomorrow (2015), It's Such a Beautiful Day (2011) and The Simpsons (1989).

13. Drew Goddard

Producer | The Martian

Drew Goddard was raised in Los Alamos, New Mexico. He attended Los Alamos High School in Los Alamos, New Mexico and graduated in 1993. He then attended the University of Colorado, and worked as a production assistant in L.A. after graduation. A spec script Drew wrote based on Six Feet Under (2001) ...

14. Duncan Jones

Director | Moon

Duncan Jones was born on May 30, 1971 in Bromley, Kent, England as Duncan Zowie Haywood Jones. He is a director and writer, known for Moon (2009), Source Code (2011) and Warcraft (2016). He has been married to Rodene Ronquillo since November 6, 2012. They have one child.

15. Gareth Edwards

Visual_effects | Monsters

Gareth James Edwards was born on June 1, 1975 in the English town of Nuneaton, Warwickshire. Growing up, he admired movies such as the 1977 classic "Star Wars", and went on to pursue a film career. He even cites George Lucas and Steven Spielberg as his biggest influences. Edwards studied BA (Hons) ...

16. Gareth Evans

Director | Serbuan maut

Welsh born writer/director, in 2003 directed a short film "Samurai Monogatari" telling the tale of a Samurai waiting to be executed. The short was in Japanese language and starred students from Tokyo who were studying at Cardiff University at the time.

In 2003 he also graduated with an MA in ...

17. James Gunn

Writer | Guardians of the Galaxy

James Gunn was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri in a large Irish Catholic family. His father and his uncles were all lawyers. He has been writing and performing as long as he can remember. He began making 8mm films at the age of 12. Many of these were comedic splatter films featuring his ...

18. J.C. Chandor

Producer | A Most Violent Year

J.C. Chandor was born as Jeffrey McDonald Chandor. He is a producer and writer, known for A Most Violent Year (2014), Margin Call (2011) and All Is Lost (2013). He has been married to Mary Cameron Goodyear since 2004. They have two children.

19. James Ward Byrkit

Director | Coherence

James Ward Byrkit is a director and writer, known for Coherence (2013), Rango (2011) and The Forest (2016).

20. Jason Reitman

Producer | Up in the Air

Jason Reitman was born on October 19, 1977 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. He is a producer and director, known for Up in the Air (2009), Thank You for Smoking (2005) and Juno (2007). He was previously married to Michele Lee.

21. Jeff Nichols

Writer | Take Shelter

Jeff Nichols was born on December 7, 1978 in Little Rock, Arkansas, USA. He is a writer and director, known for Take Shelter (2011), Midnight Special (2016) and Mud (2012).

22. Jennifer Kent

Director | The Babadook

Jennifer Kent is an actress and director, known for The Babadook (2014), Monster (2005) and Babe: Pig in the City (1998).

23. Jennifer Yuh Nelson

Director | Kung Fu Panda 2

Jennifer Yuh Nelson was born on May 7, 1972 in South Korea. She is known for her work on Kung Fu Panda 2 (2011), Kung Fu Panda (2008) and Dark City (1998).

24. Joe Cornish

Writer | Attack the Block

Joe Cornish was born on December 20, 1968 in London, England as Joseph Murray Cornish. He is a writer and director, known for Attack the Block (2011), Ant-Man (2015) and The Adventures of Tintin (2011).

25. John Maclean

Soundtrack | Slow West

John Maclean studied BA drawing and painting at Edinburgh college of Art and MA at The Royal College of art in London. After graduating, he formed The Beta Band with friends, 1997 to 2004 and The Aliens 2005 to 2008. John made many of the band's music videos. In 2009 John made Man on a Motorcycle, ...

26. Jonathan Levine

Writer | The Wackness

Jonathan Levine is a writer and director, known for The Wackness (2008), 50/50 (2011) and The Night Before (2015).

27. Jordan Vogt-Roberts

Director | The Kings of Summer

Jordan Vogt-Roberts is a director and producer, known for The Kings of Summer (2013), Kong: Skull Island (2017) and Successful Alcoholics (2010).

28. Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Actor | Inception

Joseph Leonard Gordon-Levitt was born February 17, 1981 in Los Angeles, California, to Jane Gordon and Dennis Levitt. Joseph was raised in a Jewish family with his late older brother, Dan Gordon-Levitt, who passed away in October 2010. His parents worked for the Pacifica Radio station KPFK-FM and ...

29. Josh Boone

Director | The Fault in Our Stars

Josh Boone was born on April 5, 1979 in Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA. He is a writer and director, known for The Fault in Our Stars (2014), The New Mutants (2018) and The Stand.

30. Josh Trank

Writer | Fantastic Four

Josh Trank was born on February 19, 1984 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Joshua Benjamin Trank. He is a writer and director, known for Fantastic Four (2015), Chronicle (2012) and The Kill Point (2007).

31. Kelly Reichardt

Director | Wendy and Lucy

Kelly Reichardt was born and raised in Miami-Dade Country, Florida, to a family of police officers. She had an interest in photography from a very young age. She started by using her father's camera, which he used for photographing crime scenes. She went to the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in ...

32. Lynne Ramsay

Director | We Need to Talk About Kevin

Lynne Ramsay was born on December 5, 1969 in Glasgow, Strathclyde, Scotland. She is a director and writer, known for We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011), Ratcatcher (1999) and Morvern Callar (2002).

33. Martin McDonagh

Writer | In Bruges

Martin McDonagh was born on March 26, 1970 in Camberwell, London, England. He is a writer and director, known for In Bruges (2008), Seven Psychopaths (2012) and Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri (2017).

34. Michael Spierig

Director | Predestination

Michael Spierig was born in Germany. He is a director and writer, known for Predestination (2014), Daybreakers (2009) and Undead (2003).

35. Mike Cahill

Editor | Another Earth

Mike Cahill was born on July 5, 1979 in New Haven, Connecticut, USA. He is known for his work on Another Earth (2011), I Origins (2014) and Sound of My Voice (2011).

36. Peter Spierig

Director | Predestination

Peter Spierig was born in Germany. He is a director and writer, known for Predestination (2014), Daybreakers (2009) and Undead (2003).

37. Nicolas Winding Refn

Writer | The Neon Demon

Writer, director, and producer Nicolas Winding Refn was born in Copenhagen, Denmark, in 1970, to Anders Refn, a film director and editor, and Vibeke Winding (née Tuxen), a cinematographer. Just before he turned 11, in 1981, he moved to New York with his parents, where he lived out his teenage years...

38. Ramin Bahrani

Writer | 99 Homes

Ramin Bahrani was born on March 20, 1975 in North Carolina, USA. He is a writer and director, known for 99 Homes (2014), Man Push Cart (2005) and Chop Shop (2007).

39. Rian Johnson

Director | Looper

Rian Johnson was born in Maryland and at a young age, he moved to San Clemente, California, where he was raised. After graduating from high school, he went on to attend the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts. His first feature film Brick (2005) was released in 2005 and was ...

40. Ryan Connolly

Writer | Ghost House: A Horror Movie in Real Life

Ryan Connolly is a writer and director, known for Ghost House: A Horror Movie in Real Life (2016), Proximity (2013) and U.F.Oh Yeah (2015).

41. Scott Cooper

Director | Crazy Heart

Scott Cooper was born in 1970 in Abingdon, Virginia, USA. He is an actor and director, known for Crazy Heart (2009), Out of the Furnace (2013) and Black Mass (2015).

42. Shane Carruth

Composer | Upstream Color

Writer-director Shane Carruth, a former software engineer, burst onto the independent movie scene with his extremely low-budget science-fiction film Primer (2004) in 2004. Carruth also played one of the two leads in the film and composed its music. "Primer" won the Grand Jury Prize and the Alfred P...

43. Tom McCarthy

Producer | Win Win

Tom McCarthy is an American film director, screenwriter, and actor. He is best known for direct and write The Station Agent (2003), The Visitor (2007), Win Win (2011), and Spotlight (2015), for which he won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, and was nominated for Best Director.

McCarthy...

44. Todd Field

Director | Little Children

William Todd Field was born in Pomona, California, and began acting after graduating from high school in Portland, Oregon, where he was raised. A budding jazz musician as well, he skipped college in favor of a move east to New York to study acting. Once there, he began performing with the Ark ...

45. 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 à la ferme (2013), Heartbeats (2010) and I Killed My Mother (2009).