Film directors who started to direct later in their lives...by John-564-342449 | created - 05 Mar 2017 | updated - 2 months ago | Public
…and/or had their most productive time later in their lives.
Director | Bonjour Anne
Eleanor Coppola was born on May 4, 1936 in Los Angeles County, California, USA as Eleanor Jessie Neil. She is a director, known for Paris Can Wait (2016), Hearts of Darkness: A Filmmaker's Apocalypse (1991) and Apocalypse Now (1979). She has been married to Francis Ford Coppola since February 2, ...
Actor | La doublure
Karl Lagerfeld was born on September 10, 1933 in Hamburg, Germany as Karl Otto Lagerfeldt. He was a costume designer and actor, known for The Valet (2006), High Heels (1991) and The Return (2013). He died on February 19, 2019 in Neuilly-sur-Seine, Hauts-de-Seine, France.
Writer | Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma
Pier Paolo Pasolini achieved fame and notoriety long before he entered the film industry. A published poet at 19, he had already written numerous novels and essays before his first screenplay in 1954. His first film Accattone (1961) was based on his own novel and its violent depiction of the life ...
Producer | Desde allá
Lorenzo Vigas was born in Mérida, Venezuela in 1967. He graduated in Molecular Biology from the University of Tampa, Florida. In 1995 he moved to New York City to study film at NYU. In 1998 he returned to Venezuela to direct the documentary series "Expedition". From 1999 to 2001 he worked with ...
8. Dan Gilroy
Writer | Nightcrawler
Dan Gilroy was born in Santa Monica, California, the son of Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Frank D. Gilroy, and sculptor and writer Ruth Dorothy. His brother Tony Gilroy is a screenwriter and director; and his fraternal twin brother, John Gilroy, is a film editor. Through his father, he is of ...
9. Tim Miller
Director | Deadpool
Tim Miller is an American animator, film director, creative director and visual effects artist. He was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film for the work on his short animated film Gopher Broke. He made his directing debut with Deadpool. Miller is also famous for creating ...
10. Peter Greenaway
Director | The Cook, the Thief, His Wife & Her Lover
Peter Greenaway trained as a painter and began working as a film editor for the Central Office of Information in 1965. Shortly afterwards he started to make his own films. He has produced a wealth of short and feature-length films, but also paintings, novels and other books. He has held several ...
Director | Ex Libris: The New York Public Library
Born in 1930, Wiseman is a Cambridge, Massachusetts resident and member of the Massachusetts Bar Association who turned to filmmaking in 1967, after years as an instructor and/or researcher at Boston University, Brandeis University, and Harvard. In 1970 he founded Zipporah Films, Inc., which ...
12. Robert Bresson
Writer | Au hasard Balthazar
Robert Bresson trained as a painter before moving into films as a screenwriter, making a short film (atypically a comedy), Public Affairs (1934) in 1934. After spending more than a year as a German POW during World War II, he made his debut with Angels of Sin (1943) in 1943. His next film, Les ...
Director | Os Canibais
Manoel de Oliveira was born on December 11, 1908 in Oporto, Portugal as Manoel Candido Pinto de Oliveira. He was a director and writer, known for Os Canibais (1988), I'm Going Home (2001) and Gebo et l'ombre (2012). He was married to Maria Isabel Brandão de Meneses de Almeida Carvalhais. He died on...
14. Maurice Pialat
Director | Sous le soleil de Satan
Maurice Pialat was born on August 31, 1925 in Cunlhat, Puy-de-Dôme, France. He was a director and writer, known for Under the Sun of Satan (1987), À Nos Amours (1983) and Van Gogh (1991). He was married to Sylvie Pialat. He died on January 11, 2003 in Paris, France.
15. Claude Lanzmann
Director | Shoah
Claude Lanzmann was born on November 27, 1925 in Bois-Colombes, Hauts-de-Seine, France. He was a director and writer, known for Shoah (1985), Shoah: Four Sisters (2018) and Sobibór, October 14, 1943, 4 p.m. (2001). He was married to Dominique Lanzmann-Petithory, Angelika Schrobsdorff and ...
16. Clint Eastwood
Actor | Million Dollar Baby
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...
17. Luis Buñuel
Writer | El ángel exterminador
The father of cinematic Surrealism and one of the most original directors in the history of the film medium, Luis Buñuel was given a strict Jesuit education (which sowed the seeds of his obsession with both religion and subversive behavior), and subsequently moved to Madrid to study at the ...
18. Terrence Malick
Writer | Days of Heaven
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 ...
19. 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 ...
21. Charles Laughton
Actor | Witness for the Prosecution
Charles Laughton was born in Scarborough, Yorkshire, England, to Eliza (Conlon) and Robert Laughton, hotel keepers of Irish and English descent, respectively. He was educated at Stonyhurst (a highly esteemed Jesuit college in England) and at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (received gold medal). ...
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 ...
24. Tom Ford
Director | A Single Man
Tom Ford is an American fashion designer, film director, screenwriter and film producer. He gained fame as the creative director at Gucci and Yves Saint Laurent. In 2006, Ford launched his own "Tom Ford" label.
Ford directed the films A Single Man (2009) and Nocturnal Animals (2016), both films were...
25. 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 ...
26. Garth Davis
Director | Lion
Garth Davis is a renowned film, television and commercials director whose feature directorial debut Lion was nominated for six Academy Awards including Best Picture. For the first time in the history of the Directors Guild of America, Davis was nominated twice in the same year for Lion - for the ...
27. Abbas Kiarostami
Director | Copie conforme
Abbas Kiarostami was born in Tehran, Iran, in 1940. He graduated from university with a degree in fine arts before starting work as a graphic designer. He then joined the Center for Intellectual Development of Children and Young Adults, where he started a film section, and this started his career ...
Actor | Jurassic Park
Lord Richard Attenborough was born in Cambridge, England, the son of Mary (née Clegg), a founding member of the Marriage Guidance Council, and Frederick Levi Attenborough, a scholar and academic administrator who was a don at Emmanuel College and wrote a standard text on Anglo-Saxon law. ...
29. 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 ...
30. David Hamilton
Director | Bilitis
David Hamilton was born on April 15, 1933 in London, England. He was a director and writer, known for Bilitis (1977), Laura (1979) and A Summer in Saint Tropez (1983). He was married to Gertrude and Mona Kristensen. He died on November 25, 2016 in Paris, France.
Actor | Judgment at Nuremberg
Maximilian Schell was the most successful German-speaking actor in English-language films since Emil Jannings, the winner of the first Best Actor Academy Award. Like Jannings, Schell won the Oscar, but unlike him, he was a dedicated anti-Nazi. Indeed, with the exception of Maurice Chevalier and ...
34. 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.
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 ...
38. Elia Kazan
Director | On the Waterfront
Known for his creative stage direction, Elia Kazan was born Elias Kazantzoglou on September 7, 1909 in Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (now Istanbul, Turkey). Noted for drawing out the best dramatic performances from his actors, he directed 21 actors to Oscar nominations, resulting in nine wins. He ...
39. John Huston
Director | The Treasure of the Sierra Madre
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 was English,...
41. Donald Cammell
Director | Wild Side
British director Donald Cammell, born in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1934, came from a wealthy shipbuilding family. He began his career as a painter and by the mid-'60s was celebrated among the "Swinging London" crowd. He made his foray into the film industry when he wrote the script for The Touchables...
43. Alan J. Pakula
Producer | Sophie's Choice
Alan J. Pakula was born on April 7, 1928 in The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA as Alan Jay Pakula. He was a producer and director, known for Sophie's Choice (1982), All the President's Men (1976) and Presumed Innocent (1990). He was married to Hannah Pakula and Hope Lange. He died on November ...
45. James Schamus
Producer | Wo hu cang long
James Schamus was born on September 7, 1959 in Detroit, Michigan, USA. He is a producer and writer, known for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000), The Ice Storm (1997) and Lust, Caution (2007). He is married to Nancy Jean Kricorian. They have two children.
Actress | Evita
The remarkable, hyper-ambitious Material Girl who never stops reinventing herself, Madonna is a seven-time Grammy Award-winner who has sold over three hundred million records and CDs to adoring fans worldwide. Her film career, however, is another story. Her performances have consistently drawn ...
49. Wally Pfister
Cinematographer | Inception
Wally Pfister is an American cinematographer and film director, who is best known for his work with Christopher Nolan. He is also known for his work on director F. Gary Gray's The Italian Job (2003) and Bennett Miller's Moneyball (2011).
He made his directorial debut with the film Transcendence (...
53. Josef Hader
Actor | Der Knochenmann
Josef Hader was born on February 14, 1962 in Waldhausen, Austria. After attending grammar school in Melk (Lower Austria) he started studying Germany and History in 1981, but actually he focused on his talent as a comedian. In 1982 he wrote his first cabaret play called "Fort Geschritten". For his ...
54. Edgar Reitz
Director | Die andere Heimat - Chronik einer Sehnsucht
Studied theatre science, German philology, art history, and publicism in Munich. Published some poems and short stories during early 1950s, co-edited the literature magazine "Spuren". In 1952, he took acting lessons, co-founded a student theatre which became established as the university's studio ...
56. Ralitza Petrova
Director | Bezbog
Born in Bulgaria, Ralitza lives and works between Bulgaria, England, and France. In early life she studied Fine Art, and later Fiction Directing at the UK's National Film and Television School. Her films have won acclaim at Cannes, Berlin, and Locarno film festivals. In 2007 she was awarded the ...
Director | Bir Zamanlar Anadolu'da
Nuri Bilge Ceylan was born in Istanbul on January 26th, 1959. In 1976, he began studying chemical engineering at Istanbul Technical University, in a context of strong student unrest, boycotts and political polarization. In 1978, he switched courses to Electrical Engineering at Bogazici University. ...
59. Warren Beatty
Actor | Heaven Can Wait
Since starring in his first film, Splendor in the Grass (1961), Warren Beatty has been said to have demonstrated a greater longevity in movies than any actor of his generation. Few people have taken so many responsibilities for all phases of the production of films as producer, director, writer, ...
60. Bob Fosse
Director | Cabaret
Bob Fosse was born on June 23, 1927 in Chicago, Illinois, USA as Robert Louis Fosse. He is known for his work on Cabaret (1972), Lenny (1974) and All That Jazz (1979). He was married to Gwen Verdon, Joan McCracken and Mary Ann Niles. He died on September 23, 1987 in Washington, District of Columbia...
61. John Schlesinger
Director | Midnight Cowboy
Oscar-winning director John Schlesinger, who was born in London, on February 16, 1926, was the eldest child in a solidly middle-class Jewish family. Berbard Schlesinger, his father, was a pediatrician, and his mother, Winifred, was a musician. He served in the Army in the Far East during World War ...
62. Jon Stewart
Writer | The Daily Show
Jon Stewart was born Jonathan Stuart Leibowitz in New York City, New York, to Marian (Laskin), a teacher, and Donald Leibowitz, a physics professor. His family is Ashkenazi Jewish (from Austria, Ukraine, Poland, and Belarus). Stewart moved to Lawrenceville, New Jersey during his childhood. He ...
63. Elizabeth Banks
Actress | The Hunger Games
Elizabeth Banks was born Elizabeth Mitchell in Pittsfield, a small city in the Berkshires in western Massachusetts near the New York border, on February 10, 1974. She is the daughter of Ann (Wallace), who worked in a bank, and Mark P. Mitchell, a factory worker. Elizabeth describes herself as ...
65. Justin Kurzel
Director | Snowtown
Known for his bold career growth, Australian director Justin Kurzel, who, after the striking debut feature The Snowtown Murders (2011), which conquered hearts of people on many festivals, has chosen a Shakespearean adaptation (Macbeth (2015)) starring famous international film actors Michael ...
66. Oz Perkins
Writer | February
Oz Perkins was born on February 2, 1974 in New York City, New York, USA as Osgood Robert Perkins. He is an actor and writer, known for The Blackcoat's Daughter (2015), I Am the Pretty Thing That Lives in the House (2016) and Legally Blonde (2001). He was previously married to Sidney.
67. Barry Levinson
Director | Rain Man
Barry Levinson was born in Baltimore, Maryland, to Violet (Krichinsky) and Irvin Levinson, who worked in furniture and appliance. He is of Russian Jewish descent. Levinson graduated from high school in 1960, attended college at American University in Washington, DC. He did well, but decided he ...
68. Jim Sheridan
Producer | In America
Jim Sheridan is a master story-teller, and an acclaimed film director of few films, but good films nevertheless.
Born in Dublin, Ireland, in 1949, Sheridan moved to America in 1982, meeting a man who invited him to run the Irish Arts Center. He found a place to live in Hell's Kitchen, New York City,...
69. Joel Edgerton
Actor | The Gift
Joel Edgerton was born on June 23, 1974 in Blacktown, New South Wales, Australia, to Marianne (van Dort) and Michael Edgerton, who is a solicitor and property developer. His brother is filmmaker Nash Edgerton. His mother is a Dutch immigrant. Joel went to Hills Grammar School in the Western Suburbs...
70. Denise Di Novi
Producer | Heathers
…with 61. See: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/how-batman-returns-producer-transitioned-directors-chair-989446
71. Jordan Peele
Writer | Get Out
Jordan Haworth Peele attended Sarah Lawrence College as a member of the class of 2001. His mother is white and his father is black. Jordan is married to comedian Chelsea Peretti, with whom he has a son.
He is known for co-writing and starring in the comedy Keanu (2016), opposite his close friend ...
Assistant_director | Rush Hour 3
Charlotte Roustang was born in Paris. After attending various theater classes and acting as a child and teenager, she went on to study business and management and specialized in Information and Communications Technology. Despite a promising debut by founding an internet start-up and as a senior ...
Director | Zimna wojna
A literature and philosophy graduate, with extensive post-graduate work at Oxford on German literature, Polish-born Pawel Pawlikowski started as a documentary filmmaker in British television.
His second feature, Last Resort (2000), earned him international critical acclaim at numerous festivals, ...
76. Vanessa Redgrave
Actress | Atonement
On January 30, 1937, renowned theatre actor Michael Redgrave was performing in a production of Hamlet in London. During the curtain call, the show's lead, Laurence Olivier, announced to the audience: "tonight a great actress was born". This was in reference to his co-star's newborn daughter, ...
…with 80 years: "Sea Sorrow" (2017)
77. Lav Diaz
Writer | Ang panahon ng halimaw
Lav Diaz was born on December 30, 1958 in Datu Paglas, Maguindanao, Mindanao, Philippines as Lavrente Indico Diaz. He is a writer and director, known for Season of the Devil (2018), The Woman Who Left (2016) and From What Is Before (2014).
…first feature with 40 years.
Director | Strangers in a Promised Land
J. Michael Hagopian was born on October 20, 1913 in Kharpert, Ottoman Empire as Hagop Mikael Hagopian. He was a director and producer, known for Strangers in a Promised Land (1984), Germany and the Secret Genocide (2003) and The Forgotten Genocide (1975). He was married to Antoinette Hobden. He ...
79. Laurie Simmons
Actress | Tiny Furniture
Laurie Simmons was born in Long Island, New York. She received a B.F.A. from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia in 1971 and later moved to New York where she lives.
Since the mid 1970s, Simmons has staged scenes for her camera with dolls, ventriloquist dummies, objects on ...
Photographer. Mother of Lena Dunham. First feature with 67 years.
80. Éric Rohmer
Director | Conte d'automne
Admirers have always had difficulty explaining Éric Rohmer's "Je ne sais quoi." Part of the challenge stems from the fact that, despite his place in French Nouvelle Vague (i.e., New Wave), his work is unlike that of his colleagues. While this may be due to the auteur's unwillingness to conform, ...
First feature with 42 years.
84. Claire Denis
Director | High Life
Feature debut with 42 years.
85. Mike Figgis
Director | Leaving Las Vegas
Mike Figgis was born on February 28, 1948 in Carlisle, Cumberland, England as Michael Figgis. He is a director and writer, known for Leaving Las Vegas (1995), Stormy Monday (1988) and Timecode (2000).
Feature debut with 40 years.
86. Márta Mészáros
Director | Örökbefogadás
Márta Mészáros was born on September 19, 1931 in Budapest, Hungary. She is a director and writer, known for Adoption (1975), Diary for My Children (1984) and The Last Report on Anna (2009). She was previously married to Miklós Jancsó and Laszlo Karda.
Feature debut with 37 years.
87. Phyllida Lloyd
Director | Mamma Mia!
Feature debut with 51 years.
88. Hal Ashby
Editor | In the Heat of the Night
Hal Ashby was born the fourth and youngest child in a Mormon household, in Ogden, Utah, to Eileen Ireta (Hetzler) and James Thomas Ashby, on September 2, 1929. His father was a dairy farmer. After a rough childhood that included the divorce of his parents, his father's suicide, his dropping out of ...
Feature debut with 40/41 years.
89. David Seltzer
Writer | Shining Through
David Seltzer was born on February 12, 1940 in Highland Park, Illinois, USA. He is a writer and producer, known for Shining Through (1992), The Omen (1976) and Dragonfly (2002). He has been married to Carrie Hauman since January 17, 2010. He was previously married to Eugenia Zukerman.
92. Bennett Miller
Director | Foxcatcher
Bennett Miller is an American film director, best known for Capote (2005), Moneyball (2011), and Foxcatcher (2014). He began his film career directing the 1998 documentary The Cruise.
In 2006 Miller directed the Bob Dylan music video "When the Deal Goes Down" starring Scarlett Johansson.
Miller has ...
93. Jacques Audiard
Writer | De rouille et d'os
Born in Paris, France, in 1952. Jacques Audiard's family has always been involved in movie business. His father, Michel, was a popular screenwriter and director and his uncle a producer. But in his teens he refused that world and wanted to be a teacher. He studied literature and philosophy at the ...
95. Ang Lee
Director | Wo hu cang long
Born in 1954 in Pingtung, Taiwan, Ang Lee has become one of today's greatest contemporary filmmakers. Ang graduated from the National Taiwan College of Arts in 1975 and then came to the U.S. to receive a B.F.A. Degree in Theatre/Theater Direction at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, ...
Writer | Blowup
Michelangelo Antonioni was born in 1912 into a middle-class family and grew up in bourgeois surroundings of the Italian province. In Bologna he studied economics and commerce while he painted and also wrote criticism for a local newspaper. In 1939 he went to Rome and worked for the journal "Cinema"...
97. Fabián Bielinsky
Writer | Nueve reinas
He graduated from ENERC (Escuela Nacional de Experimentación y Realización Cinematográfica), the most prestigious film school in Argentina, including Lucrecia Martel among its alumni and Anahí Berneri among its lecturers. He worked in several films as Assistant Director or co-writer, until his ...
Director | Párpados azules
Born in Veracruz, Mexico, in 1969, he is a graduate from the Center for Studies in Communication Sciences and later from the University Center for Cinematographic Studies (CUEC) of the National Autonomous University of Mexico. In 2007, his first feature, Blue Eyelids, is nominated to the Caméra ...
99. Robin Swicord
Writer | The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Robin Swicord was born in 1952 in Columbia, South Carolina, USA. She is a writer, known for The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008), Memoirs of a Geisha (2005) and Little Women (1994). She has been married to Nicholas Kazan since 1984. They have two children.
100. Jeanne Moreau
Actress | Jules et Jim
When people gave Louis Malle credit for making a star of Jeanne Moreau in Elevator to the Gallows (1958) immediately followed by The Lovers (1958), he would point out that Moreau by that time had already been "recognized as the prime stage actress of her generation." She had made it to the Comédie ...