Favorite Screenwriters

by ppaolo_84 | created - 10 Jan 2019 | updated - 14 Jan 2019 | Public

1. Billy Wilder

Writer | The Apartment

Originally planning to become a lawyer, Billy Wilder abandoned that career in favor of working as a reporter for a Viennese newspaper, using this experience to move to Berlin, where he worked for the city's largest tabloid. He broke into films as a screenwriter in 1929 and wrote scripts for many ...

The Apartment, Some Like It Hot, Sabrina, Sunset Blvd., The Lost Weekend, Double Indemnity, Ninotchka,

2. Stanley Kubrick

Director | 2001: A Space Odyssey

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 ...

Eyes Wide Shut, Full Metal Jacket, The Shining, Barry Lyndon, A Clockwork Orange, 2001: A Space Odyssey, Dr. Strangelove, Lolita, Paths of Glory

3. Woody Allen

Writer | Manhattan

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...

Midnight in Paris, Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Deconstructing Harry, Crimes and Misdemeanors, Hannah and Her Sisters, Manhattan, Interiors, Annie Hall

4. Francis Ford Coppola

Producer | Apocalypse Now

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 ...

Apocalypse Now, The Godfather: Part II, The Conversation, The Godfather, Patton

5. Pedro Almodóvar

Writer | Hable con ella

The most internationally acclaimed Spanish filmmaker since Luis Buñuel was born in a small town (Calzada de Calatrava) in the impoverished Spanish region of La Mancha. He arrived in Madrid in 1968, and survived by selling used items in the flea-market called El Rastro. Almodóvar couldn't study ...

La piel que habito, Volver, Hable con ella, Todo sobre mi madre, La flor de mi secreto, Tacones lejanos, Mujeres al borde de un ataque de "nervios", ¿Qué he hecho yo para merecer esto?

6. Paul Thomas Anderson

Director | Punch-Drunk Love

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...

The Master, There Will Be Blood, Punch-Drunk Love, Magnolia, Boogie Nights

7. Luis Buñuel

Writer | Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie

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 ...

Cet obscur objet du désir, Le charme discret de la bourgeoisie, Belle de jour, El ángel exterminador, Viridiana, Ensayo de un crimen, Los olvidados, L'âge d'or

8. Ben Hecht

Writer | Notorious

Ben Hecht, one of Hollywood's and Broadway's greatest writers, won an Oscar for best original story for Underworld (1927) at the first Academy Awards in 1929 and had a hand in the writing of many classic films. He was nominated five more times for the best writing Oscar, winning (along with writing...

Casino Royale, Cleopatra, Mutiny on the Bounty, The Man with the Golden Arm, Guys and Dolls, Strangers on a Train, Rope, Notorious, Gilda, Spellbound, His Girl Friday, Gone with the Wind, Wuthering Heights, Stagecoach, A Star Is Born, Scarface

9. Charlie Kaufman

Writer | Synecdoche, New York

Avid reader Charlie Kaufman wrote plays and made short films as a young student. He moved from Massapequa, New York to West Hartford, Connecticut in 1972 where he attended high school. As a comedic actor, he performed in school plays and, after graduation, he enrolled at Boston University but soon ...

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, Adaptation, Being John Malkovich

10. Quentin Tarantino

Writer | Reservoir Dogs

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...

Django Unchained, Inglourious Basterds, Kill Bill, From Dusk Till Dawn, Natural Born Killers, Pulp Fiction, True Romance, Reservoir Dogs

11. Charles Chaplin

Writer | The Great Dictator

Considered to be one of the most pivotal stars of the early days of Hollywood, Charlie Chaplin lived an interesting life both in his films and behind the camera. He is most recognized as an icon of the silent film era, often associated with his popular character, the Little Tramp; the man with the ...

Limelight, The Great Dictator, Modern Times, City Lights, The Gold Rush, The Kid

12. Joseph L. Mankiewicz

Writer | All About Eve

Born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, on February 11, 1909, Joseph Leo Mankiewicz first worked for the movies as a translator of intertitles, employed by Paramount in Berlin, the UFA's American distributor at the time (1928). He became a dialoguist, then a screenwriter on numerous Paramount ...

Cleopatra, Guys and Dolls, The Barefoot Contessa, All About Eve, A Letter to Three Wives

13. Oliver Stone

Producer | JFK

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 ...

Evita, Natural Born Killers, JFK, Born on the Fourth of July, Wall Street, Platoon, Scarface, Conan the Barbarian, Midnight Express

14. Paul Schrader

Writer | First Reformed

Although his name is often linked to that of the "movie brat" generation (Steven Spielberg, Martin Scorsese, Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, Brian De Palma, etc.) Paul Schrader's background couldn't have been more different than theirs. His strict Calvinist parents refused to allow him to see a...

The Last Temptation of Christ, Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters, Raging Bull, American Gigolo, Taxi Driver

15. Nora Ephron

Writer | Julie & Julia

Nora Ephron was educated at Wellesley College, Massachusetts. She was an acclaimed essayist (Crazy Salad 1975), novelist (Heartburn 1983), and had written screenplays for several popular films, all featuring strong female characters, such as anti-nuclear activist Karen Silkwood (Silkwood (1983), ...

You've Got Mail, Sleepless in Seattle, When Harry Met Sally..., Heartburn, Silkwood

16. Dalton Trumbo

Writer | Roman Holiday

Dalton Trumbo, the Oscar-winning screenwriter, arguably the most talented, most famous of the blacklisted film professionals known to history as the Hollywood 10, was born in Montrose, Colorado to Orus Trumbo and his wife, the former Maud Tillery.

Dalton Trumbo was raised at 1124 Gunnison Ave. in ...

Papillon, Johnny Got His Gun, Exodus, Spartacus, Roman Holiday

17. Aaron Sorkin

Writer | The West Wing

Aaron Sorkin grew up in Scarsdale, a suburb of New York City where he was very involved in his high school drama and theater club. After graduating from Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Theater, Sorkin intended to pursue a career in acting. It took him only a short time to ...

Steve Jobs, The Social Network, Malice, A Few Good Men

18. Lawrence Kasdan

Writer | The Big Chill

Lawrence Kasdan was born on January 14, 1949 in Miami, Florida, USA as Lawrence Edward Kasdan. He is a writer and producer, known for The Big Chill (1983), Silverado (1985) and Wyatt Earp (1994). He has been married to Meg Kasdan since November 28, 1971. They have two children.

The Bodyguard, The Big Chill, Body Heat, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

19. Michael Haneke

Writer | Caché

A true master of his craft, Michael Haneke is one of the greatest film artists working today and one who challenges his viewers each year and work goes by, with films that reflect real portions of life in realistic, disturbing and unforgettable ways. One of the most genuine filmmakers of the world ...

Amour, Funny Games, La pianiste

20. Ethan Coen

Producer | The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Ethan Coen was born on September 21, 1957 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA as Ethan Jesse Coen. He is a producer and writer, known for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), A Serious Man (2009) and Inside Llewyn Davis (2013). He has been married to Tricia Cooke since October 2, 1990. They have two ...

Hail, Caesar!, Burn After Reading, No Country for Old Men, The Man Who Wasn't There, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, The Big Lebowski, Fargo, Barton Fink, Raising Arizona

21. Joel Coen

Producer | The Ballad of Buster Scruggs

Joel Coen was born on November 29, 1954 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA as Joel Daniel Coen. He is a producer and writer, known for The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), Fargo (1996) and A Serious Man (2009). He has been married to Frances McDormand since April 1, 1984. They have one child.

22. Robert Towne

Writer | Chinatown

Writer, director, producer, actor. Born in Los Angeles, California, USA, and raised in the seaport town of San Pedro. Got his start acting and writing for legendary exploitation director/producer Roger Corman. Came into his own during the 1970s when he was regarded as one of the finest ...

Mission: Impossible, The Firm, Shampoo, Chinatown, The Last Detail, Bonnie and Clyde

23. Ernest Lehman

Writer | North by Northwest

One of the most critically and commercially successful screenwriters in Hollywood history, Lehman grew up on Long Island, graduated from NY's City College. One of his first jobs was as a copywriter for a Broadway publicist. This experience would later be reflected in his novel and screenplay, "...

Hello, Dolly!, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Sound of Music, West Side Story, North by Northwest, Sweet Smell of Success, The King and I, Sabrina

24. Akira Kurosawa

Writer | Ran

After training as a painter (he storyboards his films as full-scale paintings), Kurosawa entered the film industry in 1936 as an assistant director, eventually making his directorial debut with Sanshiro Sugata (1943). Within a few years, Kurosawa had achieved sufficient stature to allow him greater...

Yume, Ran, Yôjinbô, Kakushi-toride no san-akunin, Shichinin no samurai, Rashômon

25. Tennessee Williams

Writer | A Streetcar Named Desire

Tennessee Williams met long-term partner Frank Merlo in the summer of 1948 (Merlo died of lung cancer in the fall of 1963). Though separated briefly in 1961 and again in 1962, the two were partners for 15 years. Merlo acted as his personal manager/secretary.

Williams spent much of his most prolific ...

Suddenly, Last Summer, Baby Doll, The Rose Tattoo, A Streetcar Named Desire

26. Paddy Chayefsky

Writer | Network

Author, producer and composer who earned a Bachelor of Science degree from CCNY, then a Purple Heart during World War II while serving in the US Army. Joining ASCAP in 1955, his chief musical collaborators included George Bassman and Harry Warren. His popular-song compositions include "Marty" and "...

Altered States, Network, The Hospital, Marty

27. Buck Henry

Writer | The Graduate

Prolific, multi-talented comedy writer, story editor, actor and director. His father was an Air Force general (Paul Steinberg Zuckerman) turned stockbroker and his mother was silent screen star Ruth Taylor, formerly a member of Mack Sennett's bathing beauties. Buck Henry's first fling with comedy ...

To Die For, What's Up, Doc?, Catch-22, The Graduate

28. James L. Brooks

Writer | Broadcast News

James L. Brooks was born on May 9, 1940 in Brooklyn, New York, USA as James Lawrence Brooks. He is a writer and producer, known for Broadcast News (1987), As Good as It Gets (1997) and Terms of Endearment (1983). He was previously married to Holly Holmberg Brooks and Marianne Catherine Morrissey.

As good as it gets, Broadcast News, Terms of Endearment,

29. Joan Harrison

Writer | Rebecca

In 1933, she was hired to be a secretary by Alfred Hitchcock. She soon graduated to reading books and scripts, writing synopses and contributing to scripts. In 1939, she accompanied Hitchcock to Hollywood, working as his assistant and as a writer. In 1941, she was hired as a scriptwriter by MGM. In...

Saboteur, Suspicion, Rebecca

30. Ruth Prawer Jhabvala

Writer | Howards End

Ruth Prawer Jhabvala was born on May 7, 1927 in Cologne, North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany as Ruth Prawer. She was a writer, known for Howards End (1992), A Room with a View (1985) and The Remains of the Day (1993). She was married to Cyrus Jhabvala. She died on April 3, 2013 in Manhattan, New York ...

Remains of the day, Howards End, A Room with a View,

31. Dorothy Parker

Writer | A Star Is Born

Dorothy Rothschild was born on August 22, 1893 into a family of comfortable financial means. Raised by her father and Stepmother after her mother's death, she was given an excellent education for the times. Highly intelligent, she pursued a career after her formal education and proved herself to be...

Saboteur, The Little Foxes, A Star Is Born

32. David Mamet

Writer | House of Games

David Mamet was born on November 30, 1947 in Chicago, Illinois, USA as David Alan Mamet. He is a writer and producer, known for House of Games (1987), State and Main (2000) and Wag the Dog (1997). He has been married to Rebecca Pidgeon since September 22, 1991. They have two children. He was ...

Hannibal, Wag the Dog, Glengarry Glen Ross, The Untouchables, The Verdict

33. Eric Roth

Writer | Forrest Gump

Eric Roth was born on March 22, 1945 in New York City, New York, USA. He is a producer and writer, known for Forrest Gump (1994), The Insider (1999) and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008). He has been married to Debra Greenfield since 1987. They have five children.

A Star Is Born, Munich, The Insider, Forrest Gump,

34. Tony Kushner

Writer | Lincoln

Tony Kushner's play "Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes" earned him the Pulitzer Prize, among many other awards. His other acclaimed plays include "Slavs", "Homebody/Kabul" and "Caroline, or Change". He has collaborated with children's author and illustrator Maurice Sendak on ...

35. Mike Leigh

Director | Secrets & Lies

Mike Leigh was born on February 20, 1943 in Salford, Greater Manchester, England. He is a director and writer, known for Secrets & Lies (1996), Happy-Go-Lucky (2008) and Another Year (2010). He was previously married to Alison Steadman.

36. Bo Goldman

Writer | One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

There are but a few select screenwriters who are spoken of with the kind of reverence usually reserved for film Directors - Robert Towne, Alvin Sargent and Bo Goldman. Goldman is a screenwriter's screenwriter, and one of the most honored in motion picture history. The recipient of two Academy ...

37. John Hughes

Writer | Planes, Trains & Automobiles

John Hughes was born on February 18, 1950 in Lansing, Michigan, USA as John Wilden Hughes Jr. He was a writer, known for Planes, Trains & Automobiles (1987), The Breakfast Club (1985) and Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986). He was married to Nancy Hughes. He died on August 6, 2009 in Manhattan, ...

38. Steven Zaillian

Writer | Searching for Bobby Fischer

Steven Zaillian was born on January 30, 1953 in Fresno, California, USA as Steven Ernest Bernard Zaillian. He is a writer and producer, known for Searching for Bobby Fischer (1993), Schindler's List (1993) and A Civil Action (1998).

39. Spike Lee

Director | Do the Right Thing

Spike Lee was born Shelton Jackson Lee on March 20, 1957, in Atlanta, Georgia. At a very young age, he moved from pre-civil rights Georgia, to Brooklyn, New York. Lee came from artistic, education-grounded background; his father was a jazz musician, and his mother, a schoolteacher. He attended ...

40. James Cameron

Writer | Avatar

James Francis Cameron was born on August 16, 1954 in Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada. He moved to the United States in 1971. The son of an engineer, he majored in physics at California State University before switching to English, and eventually dropping out. He then drove a truck to support his ...

41. Callie Khouri

Writer | Thelma & Louise

Raised in Texas and Kentucky by her doctor father and mother. Went to Purdue University to study landscape architecture but switched to drama. Moved to Nashville after college to be with her family before heading to Los Angeles in 1982 to study at the Strasburg Institute. Worked for a commercials ...

42. Don Roos

Writer | The Opposite of Sex

Don Roos was born on April 14, 1955 in New York, USA. He is a writer and director, known for The Opposite of Sex (1997), Happy Endings (2005) and Web Therapy (2008). He has been married to Dan Bucatinsky since 2008. They have two children.

43. Mel Brooks

Actor | Spaceballs

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 ...

44. Orson Welles

Actor | Citizen Kane

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 six) he traveled the world with his father. He was orphaned at 15 after his father's death and became the ward of Dr. ...

45. Elaine May

Actress | Small Time Crooks

Elaine May was born on April 21, 1932 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA as Elaine Iva Berlin. She is an actress and writer, known for Small Time Crooks (2000), A New Leaf (1971) and Primary Colors (1998). She was previously married to David L. Rubinfine, Sheldon Harnick and Marvin May.

46. Frank Pierson

Writer | Dog Day Afternoon

Frank Pierson was born on May 12, 1925 in Chappaqua, New York, USA as Frank Romer Pierson. He was a producer and writer, known for Dog Day Afternoon (1975), Presumed Innocent (1990) and Cool Hand Luke (1967). He was married to Helene Szamet, Dori Pierson and Polly Stokes. He died on July 22, 2012 ...

Dog day afternoon

47. Robert Benton

Writer | Kramer vs. Kramer

Robert Benton was born on September 29, 1932 in Waxahachie, Texas, USA as Robert Douglas Benton. He is a writer and director, known for Kramer vs. Kramer (1979), Bonnie and Clyde (1967) and Superman (1978).

48. 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 at the Farm (2013), Heartbeats (2010) and I Killed My Mother (2009).

49. 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,...

50. Robert Zemeckis

Writer | Back to the Future

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 (1984), 1941 (1979)) and special effect ...

Back to the Future saga

51. Norman Wexler

Writer | Serpico

Norman Wexler was born in New Bedford Mass and attended Harvard University. In addition to his acclaim as the writer of Saturday Night Fever, he also suffered from manic depression, and in 1972 was arrested by the FBI for saying he was planning to shoot then-president Nixon.

52. Waldo Salt

Writer | Midnight Cowboy

Waldo Salt was one of the many people blacklisted in Hollywood during the Red Scare, but unlike others, Salt recovered triumphantly. He wrote his first scripts in the late 1930s (MGM contract writer, 1936-42) and also served as a civilian consultant to the Office of War Information from 1942- 1945 ...

53. Melissa Mathison

Writer | E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial

Melissa Mathison was born on June 3, 1950 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Melissa Marie Mathison. She was a writer and producer, known for E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982), The BFG (2016) and Twilight Zone: The Movie (1983). She was married to Harrison Ford. She died on November 4, 2015 in Los ...

54. 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 ...

55. Harold Ramis

Writer | Ghostbusters

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" ...

56. Herman J. Mankiewicz

Writer | Citizen Kane

Herman J. Mankiewicz, now known primarily as the man who co-wrote Citizen Kane (1941) with Hollywood's greatest wunderkind, Orson Welles, was one of the highest-paid screenwriters in Hollywood and the head of Paramount's screen-writing department in the late 1920s and early '30s. He reached the ...

57. Alvin Sargent

Writer | Spider-Man 2

Alvin Sargent was born on April 12, 1927 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA as Alvin Supowitz. He is known for his work on Spider-Man 2 (2004), Ordinary People (1980) and Paper Moon (1973). He was married to Laura Ziskin and Joan Camden. He died on May 9, 2019 in Seattle, Washington, USA.

58. Julius J. Epstein

Writer | Casablanca

Julius J. Epstein was born on August 22, 1909 in New York City, New York, USA. He was a writer and producer, known for Casablanca (1942), Reuben, Reuben (1983) and Pete 'n' Tillie (1972). He was married to Ann Margot Laszlo and Frances Sage. He died on December 30, 2000 in Los Angeles, California, ...

59. David Lynch

Writer | Twin Peaks

Born in precisely the kind of small-town American setting so familiar from his films, David Lynch spent his childhood being shunted from one state to another as his research scientist father kept getting relocated. He attended various art schools, married Peggy Lynch and then fathered future ...

60. Wes Anderson

Writer | Fantastic Mr. Fox

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 ...

61. 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 ...

62. Jane Campion

Writer | The Piano

Jane Campion was born in Wellington, New Zealand, and now lives in Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. Having graduated with a BA in Anthropology from Victoria University of Wellington in 1975, and a BA, with a painting major, at Sydney College of the Arts in 1979, she began filmmaking in the early...

63. Leigh Brackett

Writer | Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

Leigh Douglass Brackett was born in 1915 in Los Angeles. She was the author of numerous short stories and books regarding science fiction and has been referred to as the Queen of Space Opera. Hollywood director Howard Hawks was so impressed by one of her novels that he had his secretary call in "...

64. John Cassavetes

Actor | Love Streams

John Cassavetes was a Greek-American actor, film director, and screenwriter. He is considered a pioneer of American independent film, as he often financed his own films.

Cassavetes was born in New York City in 1929 to Nicholas John Cassavetes and his wife, Katherine Demetre (1906-1983). Nicholas was...

65. Roman Polanski

Actor | Chinatown

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 ...

66. Robert Altman

Director | Gosford Park

Robert Altman was born on February 20th, 1925 in Kansas City, Missouri, to B.C. (an insurance salesman) and Helen Altman. He entered St. Peters Catholic school at the age six, and spent a short time at a Catholic high school. From there, he went to Rockhurst High School. It was then that he started...

67. David Webb Peoples

Writer | Unforgiven

David Webb Peoples was born on February 9, 1940 in Middletown, Connecticut, USA. He is a writer and editor, known for Unforgiven (1992), Blade Runner (1982) and Twelve Monkeys (1995). He is married to Janet Peoples.

Gone with the Wind

69. Kenneth Lonergan

Writer | Manchester by the Sea

Kenneth Lonergan is a playwright, screenwriter and director. His film, You Can Count on Me (2000), which he wrote and directed, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Screenplay, won the Sundance 2000 Grand Jury Prize and the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award, the NY Film Critics Circle, LA Film ...

70. Alan Ball

Producer | American Beauty

Alan Ball was born on May 13, 1957 in Atlanta, Georgia, USA as Alan E. Ball. He is a producer and writer, known for American Beauty (1999), Six Feet Under (2001) and True Blood (2008).

American Beauty

71. Lars von Trier

Writer | Dancer in the Dark

Probably the most ambitious and visually distinctive filmmaker to emerge from Denmark since Carl Theodor Dreyer over 60 years earlier, Lars von Trier studied film at the Danish Film School and attracted international attention with his very first feature, The Element of Crime (1984). A highly ...

72. Diablo Cody

Writer | Juno

Diablo Cody is originally from Chicago, Illinois, and moved to Minnesota to live with her Internet boyfriend, Jonny who later became her husband. While there, she decided on a whim to take up stripping as a hobby of sorts.

She was working at an ad agency and got a promotion. The job wore her ragged ...

73. David Zucker

Writer | Airplane!

David Zucker was born on October 16, 1947 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA. He is a writer and producer, known for Airplane! (1980), Scary Movie 4 (2006) and Top Secret! (1984). He was previously married to Danielle Zucker.

and Jerry Zucker and Jim Abrahams

74. Lucrecia Martel

Director | La mujer sin cabeza

Born in 1966 in Salta in the North of Argentina,Lucrecia Martel settled down in Buenos Aires where she attended the ENERC (National Film School). She started by directing a few shorts among which Dead King (1995), which garnered several awards in the international film festival circuit. From 1995 to...

75. William Peter Blatty

Writer | The Exorcist

William Peter Blatty was born on January 7, 1928 in New York City, New York, USA. He was a writer, known for The Exorcist (1973), The Ninth Configuration (1980) and The Exorcist III (1990). He was married to Julie Alicia Witbrodt, Linda Blatty, Elizabeth Gilman and Mary Margaret Rigard. He died on ...

The exorcist

76. Christopher Hampton

Writer | Dangerous Liaisons

Christopher Hampton was born on January 26, 1946 in Faial, Açores, Portugal as Christopher James Hampton. He is a writer, known for Dangerous Liaisons (1988), Atonement (2007) and The Quiet American (2002). He has been married to Laura de Holesch since 1971. They have two children.

77. David Hare

Writer | The Hours

David Hare is an English playwright, screenwriter and theatre and film director. Best known for his stage work, Hare has also enjoyed great success with films, receiving two Academy Award nominations for Best Adapted Screenplay for writing The Hours in 2002, based on the novel written by Michael ...

78. Peter Shaffer

Writer | Amadeus

Educated St Paul's School & Trinity College, Cambridge. Worked in Aquisitions Dept. of New York Public Library and for music publisher Boosey & Hawkes before finding fame as playwright.

79. Hayao Miyazaki

Director | Sen to Chihiro no kamikakushi

Hayao Miyazaki is one of Japan's greatest animation directors. The entertaining plots, compelling characters, and breathtaking animation in his films have earned him international renown from critics as well as public recognition within Japan. The Walt Disney Company's commitment to introduce the ...

80. Preston Sturges

Writer | The Great McGinty

Preston Sturges' own life is as unlikely as some of the plots of his best work. He was born into a wealthy family. As a boy he helped out on stage productions for his mother's friend, Isadora Duncan (the scarf that strangled her was made by his mother's company, Maison Desti). He served in the U.S....

The lady Eve

81. Jonathan Nolan

Writer | The Prestige

Attended Loyola Academy in Wilmette, Illinois, graduating in 1994.

Graduated from Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. in 1999. Majored in English.

Shortly after graduating from Georgetown University, Jonathan Nolan served as a production assistant on Memento (2000).

Wrote the short story, "...

82. 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 ...

83. Rainer Werner Fassbinder

Writer | Faustrecht der Freiheit

Above all, Rainer Werner Fassbinder was a rebel whose life and art was marked by gross contradiction. Openly homosexual, he married twice; one of his wives acted in his films and the other served as his editor. Accused variously by detractors of being anticommunist, male chauvinist, antiSemitic and...

84. David Cronenberg

Director | The Fly

David Cronenberg, also known as the King of Venereal Horror or the Baron of Blood, was born in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in 1943. His father, Milton Cronenberg, was a journalist and editor, and his mother, Esther (Sumberg), was a piano player. After showing an inclination for literature at an early...

85. Robert Harling

Writer | The Evening Star

Robert Harling was born in 1951. He is a writer and producer, known for The Evening Star (1996), Steel Magnolias (1989) and The First Wives Club (1996).

86. P.J. Hogan

Writer | Muriel's Wedding

P.J. Hogan was born on November 30, 1962 in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia as Paul John Hogan. He is a writer and director, known for Muriel's Wedding (1994), The Dressmaker (2015) and Peter Pan (2003). He is married to Jocelyn Moorhouse.

87. Federico Fellini

Writer | Amarcord

The women who both attracted and frightened him and an Italy dominated in his youth by Mussolini and Pope Pius XII - inspired the dreams that Fellini started recording in notebooks in the 1960s. Life and dreams were raw material for his films. His native Rimini and characters like Saraghina (the ...

88. John Waters

Writer | Pecker

Growing up in Baltimore in the 1950s, John Waters was not like other children; he was obsessed by violence and gore, both real and on the screen. With his weird counter-culture friends as his cast, he began making silent 8mm and 16mm films in the mid-'60s; he screened these in rented Baltimore ...

89. Umberto Contarello

Writer | La grande bellezza

Umberto Contarello was born on July 13, 1958 in Padua, Veneto, Italy. He is a writer and actor, known for The Great Beauty (2013), This Must Be the Place (2011) and Me and You (2012).

90. W.D. Richter

Writer | Invasion of the Body Snatchers

W.D. Richter was born on December 7, 1945 in New Britain, Connecticut, USA as Walter Duch Richter. He is a writer and producer, known for Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978), Stealth (2005) and Big Trouble in Little China (1986).

91. Jay Cocks

Writer | Silence

Jay Cocks was born on December 1, 1944 in New York City, New York, USA as John Curran Cocks Jr. He is a writer, known for Silence (2016), Strange Days (1995) and Gangs of New York (2002). He was previously married to Verna Bloom.

92. Gary Goldman

Writer | Total Recall

Gary Goldman was born on September 17, 1953 as Gary Leon Goldman. He is a writer and producer, known for Total Recall (1990), Next (2007) and Total Recall (2012). He has been married to Judith Wyle since December 19, 1982. They have two children.

93. Krzysztof Kieslowski

Writer | Trois couleurs: Bleu

Krzysztof Kieslowski graduated from Lódz Film School in 1969, and became a documentary, TV and feature film director and scriptwriter. Before making his first film for TV, Przejscie podziemne (1974) (The Underground Passage), he made a number of short documentaries. His next TV title, Personnel (...

94. Caroline Thompson

Writer | Edward Scissorhands

Caroline Thompson was born on April 23, 1956 in Washington, District of Columbia, USA. She is a writer and producer, known for Edward Scissorhands (1990), The Addams Family (1991) and Corpse Bride (2005). She is married to Steve Nicolaides. She was previously married to Henry Bromell.

95. Noah Baumbach

Writer | Marriage Story

Born in Brooklyn in 1969 Noah Baumbach is the son of two film critics, Georgia Brown and Jonathan Baumbach (also a writer). His studies at Vassar College were the subject of his first film (made as he was 26 years old), Kicking and Screaming (1995). His second major picture, made ten years later, ...

96. John Patrick Shanley

Writer | Moonstruck

John Patrick Shanley was born on October 3, 1950 in The Bronx, New York City, New York, USA. He is a writer, known for Moonstruck (1987), Doubt (2008) and Congo (1995).

97. David O. Russell

Writer | American Hustle

David Owen Russell is an American film writer, director, and producer, known for a cinema of intense, tragi-comedic characters whose love of life can surpass dark circumstances faced in very specific worlds. His films address such themes as mental illness as stigma or hope; invention of self and ...

98. Kenneth Lonergan

Writer | Manchester by the Sea

Kenneth Lonergan is a playwright, screenwriter and director. His film, You Can Count on Me (2000), which he wrote and directed, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Screenplay, won the Sundance 2000 Grand Jury Prize and the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award, the NY Film Critics Circle, LA Film ...

99. Paul Haggis

Writer | Crash

Paul Haggis established himself over twenty years with an extensive career in television, before his big break into features arrived when he became the first screenwriter to garner two Best Film Academy Awards back-to-back for his scripts: "Million Dollar Baby" (2004) directed by Clint Eastwood, ...

100. John Logan

Writer | Skyfall

John Logan was a playwright in Chicago for ten years before writing, on spec, his first screenplay, "Any Given Sunday." He won the 2010 Tony, Drama Desk, Drama League and Outer Critics Circle awards for his play RED, which premiered at the Donmar Warehouse in London and the Golden Theatre on ...



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