Women Filmmakers

by clairebeale13 | created - 19 Apr 2014 | updated - 21 Jan 2015 | Public

So, I started compiling a list highly rated films made by women to use as a specific watchlist (aka 'Best Films Directed/Written by Women' - here: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls058645861/) -this list is those women.

1. Megan Griffiths

Director | Lucky Them

Megan Griffiths is a writer/director working in film and television. She recently directed two episodes of the Duplass Brothers' HBO anthology series Room 104 and an episode of the Epix comedy Graves, starring Nick Nolte. Prior to this, she wrote and directed the thriller The Night Stalker, ...

2. Julia Bacha

Director | Budrus

Julia Bacha was born in 1980 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She is a director and editor, known for Budrus (2009), Encounter Point (2006) and Control Room (2004).

4. Marina Zenovich

Director | Robin Williams: Come Inside My Mind

Marina Zenovich is an American filmmaker known for her biographical documentaries. Her films include Richard Pryor: Omit the Logic and Roman Polanski: Wanted and Desired, which won two Emmy awards. Zenovich was born in Fresno, California. She is the daughter of George N. Zenovich, a former ...

5. Ingrid Veninger

Producer | Porcupine Lake

Born in Bratislava, and raised in Canada, Ingrid Veninger is a Producer with numerous award-winning credits to her name. In 1991, she produced the Gemini nominated performance-documentary 'Standards' with Jeremy Podeswa, featuring Sarah McLachlan, Holly Cole and Molly Johnson. Since then, she has ...

6. Ann Hui

Director | Nu ren si shi

Born in China in 1947, Ann Hui moved to Hong Kong when she was still in her youth. After graduating in English and Comparative Literature from Hong Kong University, she spent two years at the London Film School. Returning to Hong Kong, she worked as an assistant to director King Hu before joining ...

7. Ivy Ho

Writer | Chan mat

Ivy Ho was born as Ho Bik-Man. She is a writer and producer, known for Claustrophobia (2008), Crossing Hennessy (2010) and Comrades: Almost a Love Story (1996).

8. Susan Chan

Writer | Ngo si seoi

Susan Chan is a writer and actress, known for Who Am I? (1998), A Simple Life (2011) and Wait 'Til You're Older (2005).

9. Icíar Bollaín

Director | Flores de otro mundo

Born in Madrid, Iciar Bollain has worked as an actress in films such El Sur (1983), directed by Víctor Erice; Sublet (1991) directed by Chus Gutiérrez, Malaventura (1988) directed by Manuel Gutiérrez Aragón; El Mejor de los Tiempos (1990) and Un Paraguas para Tres (1992) directed by Felipe Vega, ...

10. Alicia Luna

Writer | Te doy mis ojos

Alicia Luna is a writer, known for Take My Eyes (2003), Pídele cuentas al rey (1999) and Mapa de recuerdos de Madrid (2014).

11. Samira Makhmalbaf

Director | Panj é asr

Samira Makhmalbaf Filmmaker

Born on February 15,1980 in Tehran. At the age of eight, she played in "The Cyclist" directed by her father, Mohsen Makhmalbaf the celebrated Iranian filmmaker.

At the age of 17, she directed her first feature titled "The Apple" and She went on to become the youngest ...

12. Kimberly Reed

Producer | Dark Money

Kimberly Reed was born as Paul McKerrow. She is a producer and director, known for Dark Money (2018), Prodigal Sons (2008) and Paul Goodman Changed My Life (2011).

13. Shirin Neshat

Director | Zanan-e bedun-e mardan

Shirin Neshat was born on March 26, 1957 in Ghazvin, Iran. She is a director and actress, known for Women Without Men (2009), Looking for Oum Kulthum (2017) and Rapture (1999).

14. Jennifer Steinman Sternin

Editor | Desert Runners

Jennifer Steinman Sternin is an award-winning filmmaker with over 20 years of experience in television and filmmaking. She is the director and producer of an upcoming feature film about legendary Latina percussionist, Sheila E., and producer of "Time for Ilhan," featuring Minnesota State ...

15. Margarethe von Trotta

Director | Die bleierne Zeit

Margarethe von Trotta was born in Berlin in 1942. In the 1960s she moved to Paris where she worked for film collectives, collaborating on scripts and co-directing short films. She also pursued an acclaimed acting career, starring in films by well known German directors such as Rainer Werner ...

17. Sandra Goldbacher

Director | The Governess

Has directed many major commercials for Absolute Vodka, The Observer, Philips, Evian, Wella, Johnny Walker and Baileys. She also directed various arts documentaries for the BBC series 'Building Sights' and two documentaries on the world of boxing for Channel Four. She wrote and directed her first ...

18. Sloane U'Ren

Production_designer | Dimensions

Married to Antony Neely.

19. Tatiana Huezo

Director | Tempestad

Tatiana Huezo is a cinematographer and director, known for Tempestad (2016), El lugar más pequeño (2011) and Ausencias (2015).

20. Maya Gallus

Producer | Girl Inside

Maya Gallus is a director, writer and producer, known for Derby Crazy Love (2014); The Mystery of Mazo De La Roche (2012); Dish- Women, Waitressing & the Art of Service (2010); Girl Inside (2007); Punch Like A Girl (2008); Erotica: A Journey Into Female Sexuality (1997); Elizabeth Smart: On The ...

21. Heddy Honigmann

Director | Forever

Heddy Honigmann was born on October 1, 1951 in Lima, Peru. She is a director and writer, known for Forever (2006), Het ondergronds orkest (1998) and Metal and Melancholy (1994). She was previously married to Frans van de Staak.

22. Ami Canaan Mann

Director | Jackie & Ryan

Ami Canaan Mann is a director and writer, known for Jackie & Ryan (2014), Morning (2001) and Texas Killing Fields (2011).

23. Naomi Kawase

Director | An

Naomi Kawase was born on May 30, 1969 in Nara, Japan. She is a director and writer, known for Sweet Bean (2015), Suzaku (1997) and Still the Water (2014). She was previously married to Takenori Sentô.

24. Katja von Garnier

Director | Bandits

Katja von Garnier was born on December 15, 1966 in Wiesbaden, Hesse, Germany. She is a director and writer, known for Bandits (1997), Iron Jawed Angels (2004) and Ostwind (2013). She is married to Markus Goller. They have one child.

25. Lily Mariye

Director | The Terror

Lily Mariye is best known for her role as Nurse Lily Jarvik on ER (1994) for its entire 15 season run. An award-winning actress/dancer/singer, she was discovered by agent Joan Scott in the LA stage production of Elizabeth Swados musical, Runaways. She is now a TV and film director, directing "NCIS:...

26. Nina Paley

Director | Sita Sings the Blues

Nina Paley was born on May 3, 1968 in Champaign, Illinois, USA. She is a director and writer, known for Sita Sings the Blues (2008), Seder-Masochism (2018) and The Prophet (2014). She was previously married to Liam.

27. Marjane Satrapi

Director | Persepolis

Marjane Satrapi was born on November 22, 1969 in Rasht, Iran. She is a director and actress, known for Persepolis (2007), The Voices (2014) and Chicken with Plums (2011). She is married to Mattias Ripa. She was previously married to Reza.

28. Freida Lee Mock

Producer | Return with Honor

Freida Lee Mock is a producer and director, known for Return with Honor (1998), Anita (2013) and Maya Lin: A Strong Clear Vision (1994). She is married to Terry Sanders.

29. Isabel Coixet

Director | The Secret Life of Words

Isabel Coixet was born on April 9, 1960 in Sant Adrià de Besòs, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain as Isabel Coixet Castillo. She is a director and writer, known for The Secret Life of Words (2005), My Life Without Me (2003) and Cosas que nunca te dije (1996).

30. Liz Garbus

Producer | The Farm: Angola, USA

Liz Garbus was born as Elizabeth Freya Garbus. She is a producer and director, known for The Farm: Angola, USA (1998), What Happened, Miss Simone? (2015) and Girlhood (2003).

31. Susan Saladoff

Director | Hot Coffee

Susan Saladoff is a director and producer, known for Hot Coffee (2011), Democracy Now! (2001) and The Colbert Report (2005).

32. Laura Colella

Director | Breakfast with Curtis

Laura Colella is a director and actress, known for Breakfast with Curtis (2012), Tax Day (1998) and Stay Until Tomorrow (2004).

33. Gauri Shinde

Director | English Vinglish

Gauri Shinde is a director and writer, known for English Vinglish (2012), Dear Zindagi (2016) and Oh Man! (2001).

34. Vittoria Colonna

Director | Sandboy

Vittoria Colonna is a writer, director and producer. Growing up between Ireland and Italy, Vittoria was influenced to study fine art painting in Rome's L'Accademia di Belle Arti. Having trained as an Opera singer in Tuscany, she then continued in the performing arts, finishing her studies at the ...

35. Anne Aghion

Director | My Neighbor, My Killer

As a filmmaker, Anne Aghion has been drawn to places as far-ranging as rural Rwanda, the ice fields of Antarctica and the slums of Managua. She has been praised by critics both as a director of unique and poetic vision, and a documentarian who conveys a strong sense of the people and places she ...

36. Kim Cummings

Director | In Montauk

Kim Cummings was born in Detroit, Michigan and moved to Clearwater, Florida when she was six-years-old, where she lived until attending college at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Her father, Robert Cummings (not the actor), was a Systems Analyst and her mother, Marie Cummings is an artist. ...

37. Amy Berg

Producer | Deliver Us from Evil

Amy Berg was born in Los Angeles, California, USA. She is a producer and director, known for Deliver Us from Evil (2006), West of Memphis (2012) and Janis: Little Girl Blue (2015).

38. Sandra Nettelbeck

Writer | Bella Martha

Sandra Nettelbeck was born on April 4, 1966 in Hamburg, Germany. She is a writer and director, known for Mostly Martha (2001), Last Love (2013) and No Reservations (2007).

39. Lina Wertmüller

Writer | Pasqualino Settebellezze

Lina Wertmüller was born on August 14, 1928 in Rome, Lazio, Italy as Arcangela Felice Assunta Wertmüller von Elgg Spañol von Braueich. She is a writer and director, known for Seven Beauties (1975), The Basilisks (1963) and Swept Away (1974). She was previously married to Enrico Job.

40. Juanita Wilson

Director | As If I Am Not There

Juanita Wilson is a director and producer, known for As If I Am Not There (2010), Tomato Red (2017) and The Door (2008). She has been married to James Flynn since 1998.

41. Holly Dale

Director | Mary Kills People

Holly Dale is one of Canada's premiere film and television directors who has been making award-winning television and cinema for the past twenty-five years. She exhibits great versatility in her craft directing Television Pilots, Series, and Movies of the Week, as well as numerous Commercials, ...

42. Zana Briski

Director | Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids

Zana Briski was born on October 25, 1966 in London, England. She is a director and writer, known for Born Into Brothels: Calcutta's Red Light Kids (2004), The 77th Annual Academy Awards (2005) and Charlie Rose (1991).

43. Valérie Donzelli

Actress | La guerre est déclarée

Valérie Donzelli was born on March 2, 1973 in Épinal, Vosges, France. She is an actress and writer, known for Declaration of War (2011), The Queen of Hearts (2009) and Hand in Hand (2012).

44. Su Friedrich

Director | Hide and Seek

Su Friedrich is a director and editor, known for Hide and Seek (1996), Sink or Swim (1990) and Gut Renovation (2012).

45. Laurie Collyer

Director | Sherrybaby

Laurie Collyer was born in 1967 in Mountainside, New Jersey, USA. She is a director and writer, known for Sherrybaby (2006), Nuyorican Dream (2000) and Sunlight Jr. (2013).

46. Barbara Kopple

Director | American Dream

Barbara Kopple was born on July 30, 1946 in New York City, New York, USA. She is a director and producer, known for American Dream (1990), Harlan County U.S.A. (1976) and Shut Up & Sing (2006).

47. Joan Micklin Silver

Director | Between the Lines

As a successful director working both inside and outside the Hollywood studio system, Joan Micklin Silver has been a true lamplighter. Garnering a steady stream of awards and box office successes, she has proved herself time and again as one of the most important woman directors to come out of the ...

48. Annemarie Jacir

Writer | Milh Hadha al-Bahr

Annemarie Jacir was born on January 17, 1974 in Bethlehem, Palestine. She is a writer and producer, known for Salt of This Sea (2008), When I Saw You (2012) and Like Twenty Impossibles (2003).

49. Randa Haines

Producer | Antwone Fisher

Randa Haines was born on February 20, 1945 in Los Angeles, California, USA. She is a director and producer, known for Antwone Fisher (2002), Children of a Lesser God (1986) and Something About Amelia (1984).

50. Marleen Gorris

Director | Antonia

Marleen Gorris was born on December 9, 1948 in Roermond, Limburg, Netherlands. She is a director and writer, known for Antonia's Line (1995), Gebroken spiegels (1984) and A Question of Silence (1982).

51. Courtney Hunt

Director | Frozen River

Courtney Hunt was born in 1964 in Memphis, Tennessee, USA. She is a director and writer, known for Frozen River (2008), The Whole Truth (2016) and Fear the Walking Dead (2015).

52. Shola Lynch

Producer | Free Angela and All Political Prisoners

Shola Lynch was born as Shola Ayn Lynch. She is an actress and producer, known for Free Angela and All Political Prisoners (2012), Chisholm '72: Unbought & Unbossed (2004) and Sesame Street (1969). She has been married to Vincent Morgan since September 1, 2006.

53. Céline Sciamma

Writer | Tomboy

Céline Sciamma was born on November 12, 1980 in Pontoise, Val-d'Oise, France. She is a writer and director, known for Tomboy (2011), Water Lilies (2007) and Girlhood (2014).

54. Anne Buford

Director | Elevate

Anne Buford is a director and producer, known for Elevate (2011) and How We Covered It (2013).

55. Natalia Almada

Director | Todo lo demás

Natalia Almada is a director and editor, known for Everything Else (2016), The General (2009) and Al otro lado (2005).

56. Marie Kreutzer

Director | Die Vaterlosen

Marie Kreutzer was born in 1977 in Graz, Styria, Austria. She is a director and writer, known for The Fatherless (2011), Gruber geht (2015) and The Ground Beneath My Feet (2019).

57. Kathryn Bigelow

Director | The Hurt Locker

A very talented painter, Kathryn spent two years at the San Francisco Art Institute. At 20, she won a scholarship to the Whitney Museum's Independent Study Program. She was given a studio in a former Offtrack Betting building, literally in an old bank vault, where she made art and waited to be ...

58. Sofia Coppola

Actress | The Godfather Part III

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 ...

59. Lynne Ramsay

Director | You Were Never Really Here

Lynne Ramsay was born on December 5, 1969 in Glasgow, Strathclyde, Scotland. She is a director and writer, known for You Were Never Really Here (2017), We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011) and Morvern Callar (2002). She was previously married to Rory Stewart Kinnear.

60. Jennifer Venditti

Director | Billy the Kid

Director Jennifer Venditti makes her directorial debut with "Billy The Kid". Venditti started her New York City based casting agency JV8INC in 1998. Traveling all over the world, street scouting real people for advertising, fashion, and film she discovers an inspired repertoire of diverse talent ...

61. Floria Sigismondi

Director | The Runaways

Floria Sigismondi is a photographer and director. Apart from her art exhibitions she is best known for directing music videos. Her trademark dilating, jittery camerawork, noticeable as early as her video for Marilyn Manson's "The Beautiful People", has been replicated by a great number of directors...

62. Daisy Asquith

Director | Queerama

Daisy Asquith is a director and producer, known for Queerama (2017), After the Dance (2015) and Cutting Edge (1990).

63. Fina Torres

Writer | Oriana

FINA TORRES is currently a director/producer who brings experience from all areas of filmmaking to the role. After studying design, photography and journalism in Venezuela, Torres moved to Paris, where she earned a Bachelor's degree in cinematography from the Institute de Hautes Etudes ...

64. Jill Morley

Director | Fight Like a Girl

Jill Morley is a director and writer, known for Fight Like a Girl (2013), Eye Poppin' (2008) and Stripped (2001). She is married to Gary Lai.

68. Kristi Jacobson

Producer | Solitary

Kristi Jacobson is a producer and director, known for Solitary (2016), A Place at the Table (2012) and Toots (2006).

69. Lori Silverbush

Director | On the Outs

Lori Silverbush is a director and producer, known for On the Outs (2004), A Place at the Table (2012) and Mental Hygiene (2001). She has been married to Tom Colicchio since September 15, 2001. They have two children.

70. Dawn Porter

Producer | Trapped

Dawn Porter is a producer and director, known for Trapped (2016), Gideon's Army (2013) and Untitled John Lewis Documentary.

71. Anna Mastro

Director | Walter

Anna Mastro is a director and producer, known for Walter (2015), The Bold Type (2017) and UnREAL (2015).

72. Nahid Persson

Director | My Stolen Revolution

Nahid Persson was born on May 24, 1960 in Shiraz, Iran as Nahid Sarvestani. She is a director and writer, known for My Stolen Revolution (2013), Prostitution: Behind the Veil (2004) and Fyra fruar och en man (2007). She has been married to Thorbjörn Persson since 1987. They have three children.

73. China Moo-Young

Director | Harlots

She has an English mother and Chinese Jamaican father.

74. Molly Green

Casting_department | Thor

Molly Green was born on September 19, 1985 in New Orleans, Louisiana, USA. She is known for her work on Thor (2011), Forev (2013) and Station 19 (2018).

77. Maggie Carey

Director | The To Do List

Maggie Carey was born in 1975 in Boise, Idaho, USA. She is a director and writer, known for The To Do List (2013), Silicon Valley (2014) and The Last Man on Earth (2015). She was previously married to Bill Hader.

80. Alana Cash

Director | Tom's Wife

Distant relative of Johnny Cash.

81. Ditsi Carolino

Director | Mula pabrika hanggang Fukuoka

Ditsi Carolino is a director and producer, known for Made in the Philippines... To Fukuoka with Love (1999), Bunso: The Youngest (2005) and Children Only Once (1996).

83. Alina Marazzi

Director | Tutto parla di te

Alina Marazzi was born on November 5, 1964 in Milan, Lombardy, Italy. She is a director and writer, known for All About You (2012), We Want Roses Too (2007) and Can't Remember Friday (1987).

84. Clio Barnard

Director | The Selfish Giant

Clio Barnard is a director and writer, known for The Selfish Giant (2013), Dark River (2017) and The Arbor (2010).

85. Jessie Deeter

Producer | A Revolution in Four Seasons

Jessie most-recently produced the feature documentary The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley, with Academy Award-winning director Alex Gibney for HBO that premiered at the 2019 Sundance film festival. Jessie also produced Do You Trust This Computer?, a feature documentary about artificial ...

86. Sara St. Onge

Director | You Me Her

Sara St. Onge is a writer and director who was born in Canada, but spent her formative years in Seattle, Washington. She graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2000 with a degree in photography, but never attended film school. Her films have screened at major festivals such as Sundance...

87. Jennifer Lee

Writer | Frozen

Jennifer Lee was born on October 22, 1971 in Barrington. Rhode Island, USA as Jennifer Michelle Rebecchi. She is a writer and producer, known for Frozen (2013), Wreck-It Ralph (2012) and Zootopia (2016).

88. Sasha Isaac-Young

Director | Foster Stories

Sasha Isaac-Young is a director and actress, known for Foster Stories (2005), The Shadows (2007) and Little Valerie (2005).

89. Joan Tewkesbury

Writer | Nashville

Joan Tewkesbury began her career at age ten as a dancer in The Unfinished Dance. A few years later she appeared as an Ostrich, an Indian and Mary Martin's flying understudy in Jerome Robbin's Peter Pan. She attended University of Southern California, became a choreographer, a theatre director, a ...

90. Kalyanee Mam

Cinematographer | A River Changes Course

Kalyanee Mam is a cinematographer and producer, known for A River Changes Course (2013), Lost World (2018) and Inside Job (2010).

92. Jenn Page

Director | Playing with Beethoven

Jenn Page is an accomplished feature and series director who was selected by Take The Lead as one of the "50 Women who Can Change The World in Media & Entertainment." She's filmed projects for/with internationally known brands and artists including Blackmagic Design, Panic at the Disco, Weezer, ...

93. Lucy Walker

Director | The Crash Reel

Lucy Walker was born in London, England. She is a director and producer, known for The Crash Reel (2013), Waste Land (2010) and Blindsight (2006).

94. Margaret Brown

Director | The Order of Myths

Margaret Brown is a director and producer, known for The Order of Myths (2008), The Great Invisible (2014) and 99 Threadwaxing (1998).

95. Whoopi Goldberg

Actress | Ghost

Whoopi Goldberg was born Caryn Elaine Johnson in the Chelsea section of Manhattan on November 13, 1955. Her mother, Emma (Harris), was a teacher and a nurse, and her father, Robert James Johnson, Jr., was a clergyman. Whoopi's recent ancestors were from Georgia, Florida, and Virginia. She worked in...

96. Linda Bloodworth-Thomason

Writer | Designing Women

Linda Bloodworth-Thomason was born on April 15, 1947 in Poplar Bluff, Missouri, USA as Linda Joyce Bloodworth. She is a writer and producer, known for Designing Women (1986), Bridegroom (2013) and Evening Shade (1990). She has been married to Harry Thomason since July 23, 1983.

97. Mo Ogrodnik

Writer | Deep Powder

Professor of Undergraduate Film and Television at New York University

98. Steph Green

Director | The Americans

Steph Green is an Oscar nominated film and TV director. Selected as one of Creativity Magazine's Top Directors to Watch and Filmmaker Magazine's 25 New Faces of Independent Film, Steph has worked extensively in Ireland. Steph has been honored at Cannes Lions and Young Guns advertising festivals, as...

100. Annaleena Piel Linnå

Director | Bye-Bye Butty

Annaleena Piel Linnå is a filmmaker and multi-disciplinary artist living in London. She studied film at London College of Printing, following that with an MA in feminist politics and philosophy at Birkbeck College. Her fiction debut "The Undertaker" (2005) garnered many awards from the ...



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