The Best and Most Influental Directors of all time

This is mostly in order and includes what i think their two best movies were from a directing standpoint. Please comment and check out my other lists.
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Stanley Kubrick
Director, The Shining
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 produce better academic performance...
“ Kubrik is the man, when most directors only make comedies or horror he made one of each. The Shining was horror, Dr. Strangelove was comedy (and the best satire), 2001 was a sci-fi, Clockwork Orange was thriller, and Full metal Jacket was war.
1. 2001: A Space Odyssey
2. The Shining (every shot is symmetric and perfect with his unique backdrops) ” - adipietro14
Martin Scorsese
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 provided the inspiration for several of his films...
“ From the slow motion scene of Joe Pesci standing over the man in Goodfellas and shooting him through the head, to the blood bath opening scene that is Gangs of New York; this director found beauty in bloody violence, but he had other movies other then gangster films like Cape Fear or Raging Bull.
1. Gangs of New York
2. The Departed (x marks the spot, all the characters who are gonna die have an x over then somehow) ” - adipietro14
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 Eileen Hitchcock (born 1892)...
“ The man could take terrible actors and a terrible script and still make a great movie out of it by using his array of amazing camera angles. No other director nails dialogue scenes like him.
1. Psycho
2. Rear Window ” - adipietro14
“ This is for both of them, they don't called them "The two-headed director" for nothing. The authentic feel from their movies is unmatched and the characters the great are simply amazing (the dude and Anton Chigurh).
1. No Country for Old Men
2. Fargo ” - adipietro14
Quentin Tarantino
Writer, Pulp Fiction
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 1992...
“ The man has balls. Some of his ideas are crazy and racy but his expertise in understanding movies makes them come to life in a way that leaves them as being regarding as some of the best movies ever made.
1. Pulp Fiction
2. Kill Bill vol.1 ” - adipietro14
Francis Ford Coppola
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 with a degree in drama from Hofstra University...
“ The man has an eye and knows what he's doing. They tried to fire him everyday off the Godfather because they thought his actors sucked and were to young and because they weren't happy with him personally. Then the Godfather got nominated for 11 Oscars including best director and three best actors. I guess he was right.
1. Apocalypse Now: Redux
2. The Godfather ” - adipietro14
David Fincher
Director, Fight Club
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 and music videos after signing with N...
“ David Fincher is one of Hollywood's smartest directors. He has an eye for what movie will be good. Who else would of seen the potential in The Social Network? He is the Kubrik of my generation and keeps making groundbreaking films. My prediction is the release of his newest film, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, will be equivalent to Kubrik's releasing of A Clockwork Orange, but hopefully without the stone dildo.
1. Fight Club
2. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (very underrated) ” - adipietro14
Christopher Nolan
Born in London in 1970, Christopher Nolan began making films at the age of seven years using his father's Super-8 camera and an assortment of male action figures. He graduated to making films involving real people, and his Super-8 surrealistic short 'Tarantella' was shown on P.B.S.' 'image union' in 1989...
“ Christopher Nolan's movies include plots so complicated, it takes a master storyteller to be able to make movies like he does. Memento and Inception had almost five stories happening at once. His original screenplays (I count Memento as one because it was only a short story from his brother before that Chris made his own) keep proving there are still great untold stories still left in Hollywood.
1. Memento
2. The Dark Knight ” - adipietro14
Peter Jackson
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, which he made with his friends...
“ Maybe not as technically good as some others but i doubt any director could of done a better job on the Lord of the Ring movies. Plus when you get Jackson you get his very talented scribe wife, Fran Walsh. His eye for detail is unmatched and his movies are never lacking in excellent editing or breath taking cinematography.
1. Lord of the Rings: Return of the King
2.Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring ” - adipietro14
Robert Zemeckis
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, 1941) and special effect vehicles (Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Back to the Future)...
“ When you hire Zemeckis you receive an oscar winning visionary who can also write and is amazing with special effects. His movies transcend time and are loved by all audiences. His animated work was enjoyable but I can't wait for his return back to feature films.
1. Forest Gump
2. Who Framed Roger Rabbit ” - adipietro14
Milos Forman
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 Buchenwald and his mother died in Auschwitz...
“ Very few directors can make a movie like One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest that makes you laugh hysterically for the first hour and a half then by the end you are speechless. Milos did though. His actors always perform excellent and his very straightforward way of directing makes the movie easy and enjoyable to watch.
1. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
2. The People vs. Larry Flynt ” - adipietro14
Roman Polanski
Director, The Pianist
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 before World War II began...
“ 1. The Pianist
2. Chinatown ” - adipietro14
Clint Eastwood
Perhaps the icon of macho movie stars, and a living legend, Clint Eastwood has become a standard in international cinema. Born May 31, 1930 in San Francisco, the elder of two children in a middle-class family, Eastwood stayed in high school until the comparatively late age of nineteen and worked menial jobs over a period of several years before enrolling at Los Angeles City College...
“ 1. Million Dollar Baby
2. Unforgiven ” - adipietro14
Darren Aronofsky
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 several film awards after completing his senior thesis film...
“ 1. Black Swan
2. Requiem for a Dream ” - adipietro14
Ridley Scott
Producer, Blade Runner
Ridley Scott is an English film director and producer. Following his commercial breakthrough with the science-fiction horror film Alien (1979), his best known works are the noir science fiction film Blade Runner (1982), crime drama Thelma & Louise (1991), historical drama and Best Picture Oscar winner Gladiator (2000)...
“ 1. Alien
2. American Gangster ” - adipietro14
Paul Thomas Anderson
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 8 mm films, Anderson cut his teeth shooting films on video and editing them from V.C.R. to V.C.R...
“ 1. Magnolia
2. Boogie Nights ” - adipietro14
Billy Wilder
The second of two sons, his father ran a chain of railway station cafes. As a youth he was obsessed with everything American. encouraged by his mother he enrolled as a law student at the University of Vienna but quit after 3 months to be a writer on a magazine which although poorly paid it gave him a great amount of experience interviewing such as Richard Strauss and Sigmund Freud...
Terrence Malick
Terrence Malick was born in Ottawa, Illinois. His family subsequently lived in Oklahoma and he went to school in Austin, Texas. He did his undergraduate work at Harvard, graduating summa cum laude with a degree in philosophy in 1965. A member of the Phi Beta Kappa honor society, he attended Magdalen College...
Guillermo del Toro
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) and worked on making his own short films...