TOP 100 Spanish Directorsby CarlosAlvar | created - 01 Mar 2015 | updated - 02 Mar 2015 | Public
1. 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 ...
Writer | Plácido
Berlanga commenced his studies in Valencia in1928, although in 1929 his family sent him and his brother Fernando (due to a lung disease) to the Beau-soleil hospital school in Switzerland. In 1930, he returned to the San José School in Valencia where he stayed until 1931, the year in which the ...
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 ...
Writer | El último caballo
Edgar Neville was born on December 28, 1899 in Madrid, Spain as Edgar Neville Romrée (conde de Berlanga de Duero). He was a writer and director, known for El último caballo (1950), La vida en un hilo (1945) and Flamenco (1952). He was married to Ángeles Rubio Argüelles y Alessandri. He died ...
Writer | Calle Mayor
Juan Antonio Bardem was born on June 2, 1922 in Madrid, Spain as Juan Antonio Bardem Muñoz. He was a writer and director, known for Main Street (1956), La venganza (1958) and Death of a Cyclist (1955). He was married to María Aguado Barbado. He died on October 30, 2002 in Madrid.
7. Carlos Saura
Writer | Peppermint Frappé
Spanish director, writer, producer (2 films) and actor (2 films). His interest on cinema started when he was very young. His mother, who was a pianist, instilled in him the liking for music, and his brother, Antonio, who was a painter, the passion for art. When he was an teenager he started to ...
Actor | Todo sobre mi madre
Spanish actor and director of cinema and theater. Son of the actress Carola Fernán Gómez. When he was three years old he comes back to Spain from Argentina. He has written comedies, novels and poem books. He plays a wide repertoire of roles from comedy to drama.
Writer | Mi querida señorita
Jaime de Armiñán was born on March 9, 1927 in Madrid, Spain as Jaime de Armiñán Oliver. He is a writer and director, known for Mi querida señorita (1972), The Love of Captain Brando (1974) and El nido (1980). He was previously married to Elena Santonja.
10. Jaime Chávarri
Director | A un dios desconocido
Jaime Chavarri is a professional lawyer who had a lot of amateur experience with his Super 8 camera. His first professional movie was Los viajes escolares (1976), with an autobiographical touch but it was misunderstood by most critics. Later he worked with the producers 'Elías Querejeta (I)' (The ...
11. Pilar Miró
Director | El perro del hortelano
Born to a military family. Attends law studies before starting a newspaper career. In 1960 starts on TV. Joins the Socialist Party in 1976 and conducts the electoral campaign in 1982 and in the same year she is designated General Director of Cinema. Resigning in 1985, the next year she joins the ...
Writer | Faustina
José Luis Sáenz de Heredia was born on April 10, 1911 in Madrid, Spain as José Luis Sáenz de Heredia y Osio. He was a writer and director, known for Faustina (1957), Don Juan (1950) and Historias de la radio (1955). He was married to María Ascensión Casado Iturbide. He died on November 4, 1992 in ...
15. Mario Camus
Director | Young Sánchez
Camus started studying Law, but soon left his studies to enter the IIEC (now EOC) in 1956, where he got a director's diploma in 1963 with the training film El borracho (1962) and, finally, ended up as a professor. He worked with Carlos Saura in several screenplays during the early 60s (The ...
16. José Luis Garci
Writer | Canción de cuna
Born on January 20th of 1944 in Madrid, Spain, José Luis Garci is without a doubt one of the most influential film personalities in the history of film in Spain and perhaps the best known writer in the country. He has left a distinguished talent in his successful movies throughout the years: La ...
17. Julio Medem
Director | Lucía y el sexo
Julio Medem was born in San Sebastian in northern Spain. As a teenager Medem made short movies with a super-8 camera owned by his father. Some of those films are "El ciego" (1976), "El jueves pasado" (1977) and "Fideos" (1979.) Wanting to know more about the darkest corners of the human mind, Medem...
Director | The Oxford Murders
A spanish cult director, author of Day of the Beast (The Day of the Beast (1995)) and Acción mutante (1993) have their own very strong but small followings, and Dance With the Devil (Dance with the Devil (1997)) will go down in history as probably the weirdest Javier Bardem film ever made (...
20. Fernando Trueba
Writer | Belle Epoque
Trueba studied Imagen at the Facultad de Ciencias de la Información, was cinema critic for the newspaper 'El País' and for 'La Guía del Ocio' and also founded the journal "Casablanca". At the movies his first success was Opera Prima (1980) following the style of the "comedia madrileña". He had ...
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 (1996). His film ...
23. Bigas Luna
Writer | Jamón Jamón
Bigas Luna was born on March 19, 1946 in Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain as Josep Joan Bigas Luna. He was a writer and director, known for Jamón, Jamón (1992), Caniche (1979) and The Chambermaid on the Titanic (1997). He was married to Celia Orós. He died on April 6, 2013 in La...
Director | Todos somos necesarios
José Antonio Nieves Conde was born on December 22, 1915 in Segovia, Castilla y León, Spain. He was a director and writer, known for Todos somos necesarios (1956), Surcos (1951) and El diablo también llora (1965). He was married to María Luisa Mascuñán. He died on September 14, 2006 in Madrid...
27. 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 Things I Never Told You (1996).
31. José Luis Borau
Writer | Leo
Born in Zaragoza (Spain). 1949. He began to study law in Zaragoza. 1952. He began to publish articles about cinema in the newspaper "El Heraldo de Aragon". April 1954-January 1956. Critic of cinema in the same newspaper. 1957. Enters the spanish Instituto de Investigaciones y Experiencias ...
32. Florián Rey
Writer | La aldea maldita
Spanish director Florian Rey began his career in the film industry in the 1920s as an actor, but he soon switched careers and directed his first film in 1924. His 1927 film Sister San Sulpicio (1927) starred Spanish actress Imperio Argentina, whom he later married. His best-known film is The Cursed...
36. 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, ...
Director | 091 Policía al habla
José María Forqué was born on March 8, 1923 in Zaragoza, Spain as José María Forqué Galindo. He was a director and writer, known for 091 Policía al habla (1960), Whom God Forgives (1957) and Violent Fate (1960). He was married to Carmen Vázquez Vigo. He died on March 17, 1995 in Madrid, ...
42. Vicente Aranda
Director | Amantes
Vicente Aranda was born on November 9, 1926 in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain as Vicente Aranda Ezquerra. He was a director and writer, known for Lovers: A True Story (1991), El Lute: Run for Your Life (1987) and The Maidens' Conspiracy (2006). He was married to Teresa Font. He died on May 26, 2015 in...
Writer | Nueve cartas a Berta
Martín Patino studied philosophy and arts but also attended the School of Cinema. He debuted at the movies with "Nueve cartas a Berta" (1967), one of the most important films of the New Spanish Cinema (nuevo cine español). The film "Canciones para después de una Guerra" (1971) which reconstructs ...
44. Juan de Orduña
Director | Un drama nuevo
Of aristocratic origin, while attending college, and theatergoers will soon begin to combine classroom with on stage performances. Adding to the Society of Emilio Thuiller, debuting on camera in 1924 with "The House of Troy, and forming his own company shortly thereafter. Although Juan de Orduña is...
45. Jaime Camino
Writer | Las largas vacaciones del 36
Jaime Camino was born on June 11, 1936 in Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain as Jaime Camino Vega de la Iglesia. He was a writer and director, known for The Long Holidays of 1936 (1976), The Children of Russia (2001) and The Old Memory (1978). He died on December 4, 2015 in Barcelona.
Writer | Alatriste
Born in Madrid, Spain, in 1950, his childhood was marked by the republicanism of his family opposed to dictator Francisco Franco, winner of the Spanish civil war. He spent his childhood in schools run by republican teachers where he received a liberal education. In the seventies he got a degree in ...
49. Achero Mañas
Director | El Bola
Born in 1966, Achero Mañas first followed in the steps of his mother, actress Paloma Lorena (who played in two of his films), but he soon turned from thespian to film director. He made three shorts before meeting with success - both public and critical - with El Bola (2000), the sensitive portrait ...
Director | Los tarantos
Francisco Rovira Beleta was born on September 25, 1912 in Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. He was a director and writer, known for Los tarantos (1963), Los atracadores (1962) and Hay un camino a la derecha (1953). He died on June 23, 1999 in Barcelona.
Director | Airbag
Juanma Bajo Ulloa was born in Vitoria, a small town in northern Spain where he has set most of his movies.
From his childhood he has been in contact with the audiovisual business. His family owns a popular magazine in Vitoria specialized in photography.
At 14 he started making short movies in super-8...
55. Iván Zulueta
Director | Arrebato
Iván Zulueta was born on September 29, 1943 in Donostia-San Sebastián, Guipúzcoa, País Vasco, Spain as Juan Ricardo Miguel Zulueta Vergarajauregui. He was a director and writer, known for Rapture (1979), Un, dos, tres... al escondite inglés (1970) and Delirios de amor (1989). He died on ...
60. Jorge Grau
Writer | Noche de verano
Jorge Grau was born on October 27, 1930 in Barcelona, Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain as Jorge Grau Solá. He was a writer and director, known for Noche de verano (1963), The Rash One (1964) and Let Sleeping Corpses Lie (1974). He died on December 26, 2018 in Madrid, Madrid, Spain.
65. Santiago Segura
Born in Madrid, Santiago Segura started his career by making his first short movie at the age of fourteen. After studying Arts in Madrid, he finally decided to become a filmmaker. His first short film Relatos de la medianoche (1989) was made with a budget of only 7.000 pts. (about 60 dollars).
67. Manuel Huerga
Director | Salvador (Puig Antich)
Manuel Huerga was born on October 20, 1957 in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain. He is a director and editor, known for Salvador (Puig Antich) (2006), Antarctica (1995) and Cerimònia d'inauguració jocs olímpics Barcelona '92 (1992).
70. Jesús Franco
Writer | Der Teufel kam aus Akasava
He was only six years old when he started composing music under the protection of his brother Enrique. After the Spanish Civil War he was able to continue his studies at the Real Conservatorio de Madrid, where he finished piano and harmony. Being a Bachelor of Law and an easy-read novel writer (...
72. Manuel Summers
Writer | Del rosa al amarillo
Manuel Summers was born on March 26, 1935 in Seville, Seville, Andalucía, Spain as Manuel Summers Rivero. He was a writer and director, known for From Pink to Yellow (1963), The Girl in Mourning (1964) and Broken Toys (1966). He was married to Consuelo Rodriguez Marquez. He died on June 12, 1993 in...
Writer | Los novios búlgaros
Spanish movies director. He studied cinema in Paris at the IDHEC. He began working in cinema in 1966, though he became famous in the years of the spanish transition to the democracy with provoking films. Drugs, delinquence, terrorism and generational problems are the common subjects in his films.
74. Antonio Mercero
Director | Planta 4ª
Spanish director, author of great success TV series and several award-winning films. His father, a staff chief in a local tyre factory, was shot by the anarchists in the Spanish Civil War when he was only 6 months old. His mother wanted him to study Law, and that's what he did. He starting studying...
76. Benito Zambrano
Director | Solas
Born in the South of Spain, Benito Zambrano first studied drama for three years with a view to becoming a theater director. He then worked for the Spanish television as a photographer and a camera operator. After a while, he felt the urge to turn to movie-making. This was the early 1990s and, as ...
82. Antonio Román
Writer | Los últimos de Filipinas
During the 1940s, Antonio Román was Spain's most celebrated filmmaker and went on to become one of the managers of the Cooperativa Cinematográfica Castilla. Originally planning to be a pharmacist, he instead turned to film criticism, writing for some of Spain's most distinguished journals. By 1934,...
Writer | Estambul 65
Antonio Isasi-Isasmendi was born on March 22, 1927 in Madrid, Spain as José Antonio Isasi-Isasmendi Lasa. He was a writer and director, known for That Man in Istanbul (1965), They Came to Rob Las Vegas (1968) and Summertime Killer (1972). He died on September 27, 2017 in Ibiza, Balearic Islands, ...
89. Antonio Drove
Writer | ¿Qué se puede hacer con una chica?
Antonio Drove was born on November 1, 1942 in Madrid, Spain as Antonio Drove Fernández-Shaw. He was a writer and director, known for ¿Qué se puede hacer con una chica? (1970), Tocata y fuga de Lolita (1974) and The Truth on the Savolta Affair (1980). He died on September 24, 2005 in ...
Director | La primera noche de mi vida
Miguel Albaladejo was born on August 20, 1966 in Pilar de la Horadada, Alicante, Comunidad Valenciana, Spain as Luis Miguel Albadalejo. He is an assistant director and director, known for The First Night of My Life (1998), Ten Days Without Love (2001) and Bear Cub (2004).
93. Vicente Escrivá
Writer | Dulcinea
Vicente Escrivá was born on June 1, 1913 in Valencia, Comunidad Valenciana, Spain as Vicente Escrivá Soriano. He was a writer and director, known for Girl from La Mancha (1962), El hombre de la isla (1960) and Manos a la obra (1997). He was married to Teresa Almirón. He died on April 18, 1999 in ...
94. Julio Coll
Writer | Distrito quinto
Julio Coll was born on April 7, 1919 in Campodrón, Girona, Catalonia, Spain as Julio Coll i Claramunt. He was a writer and director, known for Distrito quinto (1958), Afternoon of the Bulls (1956) and Ensayo general para la muerte (1963). He died on January 17, 1993 in Madrid, Spain.