Plectro Picks: Best Filmmakers (Writers and Directors)

For more visit: http://plectropicksfilm.wordpress.com/writers-and-directors/ Last update: 30/03/2014 We’re not there yet. We’re virgins. We’re still courting our collective perfection. Meanwhile we’re producing more and more realistic and meaningful works. Films touch our hearts and minds via sound and vision and soon, surely, with taste and our very fingertips. While they are still just an analogy of the reality we dream, often they replace much worse fantasies we may conjure. In Plato’s Republic the artists would not be allowed entry. Until we get there, the artists paint the Republic we await. I work on this list since about when I was born. Films have inspired me profoundly and have been an important part of my upbringing. The world changes very fast and we find new ways of telling stories, but the stories are the same, so the better the medium, the better we convey education through story-telling. -Eron Falbo
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1.
Orson Welles
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 nine) he traveled the world with his father. When his father died (he was fifteen) he became the ward of Chicago's Dr. Maurice Bernstein...
“ (Writer/Director – Citizen Kane – 1941) ” - Eron Falbo
 
2.
Tennessee Williams
Tom L. Williams, also known as Tennessee Williams, moved to St. Louis, MO at the age of 7, with his family, including his mother and sister, Rose. He lived there for the next 20 years in a number of middle-class and upper middle class apartment complexes and one rented home. He went to the Field School as a child...
“ (Writer – A Streetcar Named Desire – 1951) ” - Eron Falbo
 
3.
Elia Kazan
Elia Kazan was a Greek-American director, producer, writer and actor. Noted for drawing out the best dramatic performances from his actors, he directed 21 actors to Oscar nominations, resulting in nine wins. He directed a string of successful films, including A Streetcar Named Desire, On the Waterfront, and East of Eden...
“ (Writer/Director – On the Waterfront – 1954) ” - Eron Falbo
 
4.
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)...
“ (Writer/Director – Vertigo – 1958) ” - Eron Falbo
 
5.
David Lean
An important British filmmaker, David Lean was born in Croydon in 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 a job at Gaumont British Studios in 1927...
“ (Writer/Director – Lawrence of Arabia – 1962) ” - Eron Falbo
 
6.
Sergio Leone
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 Italy (usually making Biblical and Roman epics...
“ (Writer/Director – The Good, The Bad and the Ugly – 1966) ” - Eron Falbo
 
7.
Stanley Kubrick
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...
“ (Writer/Director – 2001: A Space Odyssey – 1968) ” - Eron Falbo
 
8.
George Roy Hill
Director, The Sting
Combative director George Roy Hill never hit it off with the critics, despite the fact that two of his films -- Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and The Sting -- had remained among the top ten box office hits by 1976. His work was frequently derided as 'impersonal' or lacking in stylistic trademarks, Andrew Sarris famously referring to it as 'idiosyncratic odious oiliness'...
“ (Director – Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid – 1969) ” - Eron Falbo
 
9.
Franklin J. Schaffner
Franklin J. Schaffner was one of the most innovative creative minds in the early days of American network television, utilizing a moving camera in the days when most television directors kept the camera static. His eye for visuals was developed in the dozens of live television programs he directed on prestigious shows such as Studio One in Hollywood and Playhouse 90...
“ (Director – Papillon – 1973) ” - Eron Falbo
 
10.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – The Godfather: Part II – 1974) ” - Eron Falbo
 
11.
Terry Gilliam
Terry Gilliam was born in Minnesota near Medicine Lake. When he was 12 his family moved to Los Angeles where he became a fan of Mad magazine. In his early 20's he was often stopped by the police who often suspected him of being a drug addict and Gilliam had to explain that he worked in advertising....
“ (Writer/Director – Monty Python and the Holy Grail – 1975) ” - Eron Falbo
 
12.
John Huston
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 included English...
“ (Writer/Director – The Man Who Would Be King – 1975) ” - Eron Falbo
 
13.
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 his politics were somewhat left-leaning and he often treated socially relevant themes in his films...
“ (Director – Network – 1976) ” - Eron Falbo
 
14.
Mel Brooks
Mel Brooks was born Melvin Kaminsky on June 28, 1926 in Brooklyn, New York. He served in WWII, and afterwards got a job playing the drums at nightclubs in the Catskills. Brooks eventually started a comedy act and also worked in radio and as Master Entertainer at Grossinger's Resort before going to television...
“ (Writer/Director – History of the World: Part I – 1981) ” - Eron Falbo
 
15.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – Amadeus – 1984) ” - Eron Falbo
 
16.
Woody Allen
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...
“ (Writer/Director/Actor – Hannah and Her Sisters – 1986) ” - Eron Falbo
 
17.
“ (Writer/Director – Ferris Bueller’s Day Off – 1986) ” - Eron Falbo
 
18.
Oliver Stone
Director, Platoon
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 born in New York City...
“ (Writer/Director – Platoon – 1986) ” - Eron Falbo
 
19.
“ (Writer – Empire of the Sun – 1987) ” - Eron Falbo
 
20.
“ (Writer/Director – Cinema Paradiso – 1988) ” - Eron Falbo
 
21.
“ (Writer/Director – Dead Poets Society – 1989) ” - Eron Falbo
 
22.
Frank Oz
Frank Richard Oznowicz was born in Hereford, England to puppeteers Frances and Isidore Oznowicz. His family moved to Montana in 1951, eventually settling in Oakland, California. As a teenager, he worked as an apprentice puppeteer at Children's Fairyland amusement park. He is one of the primary puppeteers...
“ (Director – What About Bob? – 1991) ” - Eron Falbo
 
23.
Harold Ramis
Born on November 21, 1944 in Chicago, Illinois, Harold Allen Ramis got his start in comedy as Playboy magazine's joke editor and reviewer. In 1969, he joined Chicago's Second City's Improvisational Theatre Troupe before moving to New York to help write and perform in "The National Lampoon Show" with other Second City graduates including John Belushi...
“ (Writer/Director – Groundhog Day – 1993) ” - Eron Falbo
 
24.
“ (Director – Maverick – 1994) ” - Eron Falbo
 
25.
Jim Jarmusch
Jarmusch came to New York City from Akron, Ohio to study at Columbia and NYU's film school. He would also study film at the Cinematheque Francaise in Paris. He worked as an assistant on Lightning Over Water, a film by Nicholas Ray and Wim Wenders, before making his first film, _Permanent Vacation (1982)_...
“ (Writer/Director – Dead Man – 1995) ” - Eron Falbo
 
26.
Robert Rodriguez
Producer, Grindhouse
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, none were as captivated as the 12-year-old Rodriguez...
“ (Writer/Director – Desperado – 1995) ” - Eron Falbo
 
27.
Baz Luhrmann
Baz's parents did Ballroom competitions, thus growing up around the very subject matter of his first three films.
“ (Writer/Director – Romeo + Juliet – 1996) ” - Eron Falbo
 
28.
Alejandro Amenábar
Writer, The Others
Is the son of a Spanish mother and a Chilean father. His family moved back to Spain when he was 1 year old, and he grew up and studied in Madrid. He wrote, produced and directed his first short film La cabeza at the age of 19, and he was 23 when he directed his feature debut Thesis. His film Open Your Eyes was a huge success in Spain and was distributed worldwide...
“ (Writer/Director/Composer – Open Your Eyes – 1997) ” - Eron Falbo
 
29.
Hal Hartley
Director, Trust
Hal Hartley is an American filmmaker, writer, director, producer, and composer who has made twelve feature films since 1988. Popularly associated with the American independent filmmaking scene of the early nineties, he went on to write and direct such films as No Such Thing (2001) for United Artists and Fay Grim (2006) for HD Net Films...
“ (Writer/Director – Henry Fool – 1997) ” - Eron Falbo
 
30.
Mike Myers
Michael John Myers was born in 1963 in Scarborough, Ontario, to Alice E. (Hind), an officer supervisor, and Eric Myers, an insurance agent. His parents were both English, and had served in the Royal Air Force and British Army, respectively. Myers' television career really started in 1988, when he joined Saturday Night Live...
“ (Writer/Actor – Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery – 1997) ” - Eron Falbo
 
31.
“ (Writer/Director – Good Will Hunting – 1997) ” - Eron Falbo
 
32.
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)...
“ (Director – Contact – 1997) ” - Eron Falbo
 
33.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – Pi – 1998) ” - Eron Falbo
 
34.
Alfonso Cuarón
Writer, Gravity
Alfonso Cuarón Orozco was born on November 28th in Mexico City, Mexico. From an early age, he yearned to be either a film director or an astronaut. However, he did not want to enter the army, so he settled for directing. He didn't receive his first camera until his twelfth birthday, and then immediately started to film everything he saw...
“ (Writer/Director – Great Expectations – 1998) ” - Eron Falbo
 
35.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – Fight Club – 1999) ” - Eron Falbo
 
36.
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, she attended Emerson College in Boston, but dropped out...
“ (Writers/Directors – The Matrix – 1999) ” - Eron Falbo
 
37.
Richard Linklater
Director, Before Sunset
Self-taught writer-director Richard Stuart Linklater was born in Houston, Texas, to Diane Margaret (Krieger), who taught at a university, and Charles W. Linklater III. Richard was among the first and most successful talents to emerge during the American independent film renaissance of the 1990s. Typically setting each of his movies during one 24-hour period...
“ (Writer/Director – Waking Life – 2001) ” - Eron Falbo
 
38.
“ (Writer/Director – Conspiracy – 2001) ” - Eron Falbo
 
39.
Steven Spielberg
Undoubtedly one of the most influential film personalities in the history of film, Steven Spielberg is perhaps Hollywood's best known director and one of the wealthiest filmmakers in the world. Spielberg has countless big-grossing, critically acclaimed credits to his name, as producer, director and writer...
“ (Writer/Director – A. I. Artificial Intelligence – 2001) ” - Eron Falbo
 
40.
James Toback
Writer, Tyson
James Toback, highly respected as a screenwriter and the director of nine films, was born on November 23, 1944 in New York City to a successful garment manufacturer. A 1966 graduate of Harvard College, Toback later taught creative writing at City College of New York in the early 1970s. He suffered from a gambling compulsion that still plagues him...
“ (Writer/Director – Harvard Man – 2001) ” - Eron Falbo
 
41.
Bob Gale
Bob Gale is an Oscar-nominated screenwriter-producer-director, best known as co-creator, co-writer and co-producer of Back to the Future and its sequels. Gale was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, and graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. in Cinema from the University of Southern California in 1973...
“ (Writer/Director – Interstate 60 – 2002) ” - Eron Falbo
 
42.
“ (Writer/Director – Hero – 2002) ” - Eron Falbo
 
43.
M. Night Shyamalan
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 obstetrician and gynecologist...
“ (Writer/Director – The Village – 2004) ” - Eron Falbo
 
44.
George Lucas
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 Downey High School and was very much interested in drag racing. He planned to become a professional race-car driver...
“ (Writer/Director – Star Wars: Episode III – The Revenge of the Sith – 2005) ” - Eron Falbo
 
45.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – There Will Be Blood – 2007) ” - Eron Falbo
 
46.
“ (Writer/Director – No Country for Old Men – 2007) ” - Eron Falbo
 
47.
Paul Greengrass
Paul Greengrass started his filmmaking career with a super 8 camera he found in his art room in secondary school. Those short movies were animation horror films he made using old dolls, artist dummies, and the general art room clutter. After studying in Cambridge University he got into Granada Television...
“ (Director – The Bourne Ultimatum – 2007) ” - Eron Falbo
 
48.
Todd Haynes
Director, I'm Not There.
Todd Haynes was always interested in art, and made amateur movies and painted while he was still a child. He attended Brown university and majored in art and semiotics. After he graduated he moved to New York City and made the controversial short film Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story. The movie uses dolls instead of actors to tell the the story of the late Karen Carpenter...
“ (Writer/Director – I’m Not There – 2007) ” - Eron Falbo
 
49.
“ (Director – Slumdog Millionaire – 2008) ” - Eron Falbo
 
50.
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...
“ (Director/Composer – Gran Torino – 2008) ” - Eron Falbo
 
51.
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 of mostly Irish descent...
“ (Writer/Director/Actor – Apocalypto – 2008) ” - Eron Falbo
 
52.
Wes Anderson
Wesley Wales Anderson was born in Houston, Texas. His mother, Texas Ann (Burroughs), is an archaeologist turned real estate agent, and his father, Melver Leonard Anderson, worked in advertising and PR. He has two brothers, Eric and Mel. Anderson's parents divorced when he was a young child, an event that he described as the most crucial event of his brothers and his growing up...
“ (Writer/Director – Fantastic Mr. Fox – 2009) ” - Eron Falbo
 
53.
Ron Howard
Academy Award-winning filmmaker Ron Howard is one of this generation's most popular directors. From the critically acclaimed dramas A Beautiful Mind and Apollo 13 to the hit comedies Parenthood and Splash, he has created some of Hollywood's most memorable films. Howard directed and produced "Cinderella Man" starring Oscar winner Russell Crowe...
“ (Director – Angels & Demons – 2009) ” - Eron Falbo
 
54.
Guy Ritchie
Director, Snatch
Guy Ritchie was born in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, UK on September 10, 1968. After watching Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid 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 unwatchable. At 15 years old, he dropped out of school and in 1995...
“ (Writer/Director – Sherlock Holmes – 2009) ” - Eron Falbo
 
55.
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...
“ (Writer/Director/Actor – Inglorious Basterds – 2009) ” - Eron Falbo
 
56.
Christopher Nolan
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. At 7 years old...
“ (Writer/Director – Inception – 2010) ” - Eron Falbo
 
57.
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...
“ (Writer/Director – Shutter Island – 2010) ” - Eron Falbo
 
58.
“ (Director – Star Trek: Into Darkness – 2013) ” - Eron Falbo
 
59.
Spike Jonze
Producer, Her
Spike Jonze made up one-third (along with Andy Jenkins and Mark Lewman) of the triumvirate of genius minds behind Dirt Magazine, the brother publication of the much lamented ground-breaking Sassy Magazine. These three uncommon characters were all editors for Grand Royal Magazine as well, under...
“ (Writer/Director - Her - 2013) ” - Eron Falbo
 
60.
“ (Writer – The Counselor – 2013) ” - Eron Falbo
 
61.
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)...
“ (Director – The Counselor – 2013) ” - Eron Falbo