Random Thoughts: What happened to these directors’ (once-promising) career?

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DirectorsChairAs a film director wannabe, I tend to follow the careers of professional filmmakers. To me,they’re more interesting than movie stars. Yes, I’m one of the few people who doesn’t really care about stars. Years ago, I met Tom Cruise in person and all I said to him was how much I enjoyed his films and didn’t even ask for his autograph or take a picture with him, even though he’s my favorite actor. But if I ever run into Spielberg, Nolan, Fincher, Tarantino or Scorsese, I’d probably be excited and try to talk to them about their films and the movie-making business.

Movie-making is a tough business to get into and that’s why it’s kind of sad when I see some promising filmmakers career never took off or just go down the toilet. Maybe because they made some bad choices by choosing to direct a certain film or just have bad agents, their career is not once what it used to be. Below are some directors whom I thought had great promise when they burst into the scene but somehow they never became a household name like Nolan or Tarantino.

1. John Singleton

Director_JohnSingletonHe first film was a success, Boyz n the Hood, he’s only in his early 20s when he made it. Not only was he a young successful director but he’s one of the few African American directors working in Hollywood at the time. Instead of jumping into doing big budget production, he decided to stick with small budget dramas for his next few films. Then he made his first big budget film in 2000, a semi-sequel/remake of Shaft.

Apparently he had ran into a lot of problems while shooting the film, he fought with his star Sam Jackson constantly on the set and didn’t agree with tone of the film with producer Scott Rudin. The movie was a mild success and many thought Singleton would keep making big action pictures. Well his next film was another low budget drama, Baby Boy, it didn’t jell with critics or audiences. He decided to jump back into another big budget action film by directing 2 Fast 2 Furious, the worst in the series in my opinion. The film turned out to be his most successful yet at the box office.

After 2 Fast 2 Furious’ success, I thought for sure Singleton would be on his way to becoming one of the A-list directors in Hollywood. Well that never happened, his next film was an action drama, Four Brothers, it’s kind of weird movie that I’m still scratching my head as to why it even got green lighted by the studio and released in the summer time. Now, the film didn’t bomb at the box office but somehow Singleton’s career went downhill fast. During this time, he was attached to direct the long in development Without Remorse, a film based on Tom Clancy’s excellent novel. Of course the film never got made and Singleton’s last film was the atrocious looking, Abduction, an action (comedy?) starring that boy from the Twilight films [Taylor Lautner]. I do hope he makes a comeback someday because I like him as director.

2. Neil Jordan

Director_NeilJordanWhen his film The Crying Game became a hit here in the States, Jordan name was everywhere in Hollywood and he took an offer to direct a big budget adaption of Anne Rice’s popular novel, Interview with a Vampire. The film was a hit at the box office but instead of directing another big budget tentpole type of film, he decided to make a more personal film, Michael Collins. It didn’t click with the critics and not many people went to see it in theater. After Michael Collins, Jordan’s career sort of mellowed out and he didn’t make another big budget film until 2007′s The Brave One, a female version of Death Wish that I thoroughly enjoyed. I didn’t see any of his films after The Brave One but I’m curious about Byzantium.

I really like Jordan’s directing style and wish he’d tackle other genre, like sci-fi or action/espionage. I don’t know if he’ll ever make a comeback and reach the status as he did with The Crying Game and Interview with the Vampire. I sure hope so because the man is very talented.

3. Curtis Hanson

Director_CurtisHansonHanson has been in the movie business for a long time but he didn’t get any recognition until he made L.A. Confidential in 1997. The movie scored big with critics, got a lot of Oscar nominations and was a hit at the box office. After the film’s success, Hanson’s name was everywhere in Hollywood and he got offer to do a lot of big films but he decided to make a small drama, Wonder Boys, as his next film. It’s a very underrated movie, I really enjoyed it but somehow it never garner the attention like L.A. Confidential.

A couple of years later he made a huge come back with 8 Mile starring the then hugely popular rapper Eminem. Now I think the film’s success was mostly because of Eminem’s popularity, not because of Hanson’s work. But the film was good and I though Hanson did a great job with the material. He then tried his hands at romantic/comedy in In Her Shoes, the film got some good reviews but it didn’t click with the audience.

His next film may have been his downfall, the romantic/drama Lucky You was supposed to be his next big hit. But after some bad test screenings, the studio kept pushing the release date back. Finally they decided to open it on the same day as Spider-man 3 and of course it got crushed. His last film, Chasing Mavericks, was another dud starring the king of romantic/comedy bombs, Gerard Butler. I’m not sure if Hanson will ever make a comeback again, the kind of films he likes to direct aren’t popular anymore at the box office, unless he tries his hands at popular genre like sci-fi, action/spy or comic book, he may never gain the attention like he used to back in the late 90s.

4. Walter Hill

Director_WalterHillHill is one of my favorite directors, here’s a man who was responsible for some of the great action films of the late 70s and early 80s. The Warriors, The Driver (if you’re a fan of Drive, you’ll like this one), The Long Riders, 48Hrs, Extreme Prejudice and Southern Comfort are some of his best work. He was on his way to becoming an A-list director but a film called Streets of Fire put a stop to that. The film was a big budget (for its time) rock ‘n roll action adventure that studio hoped would spawn many sequels. Unfortunately it tanked at the box office and Hill’s career never really recover. He continued to make action films throughout the 80s, 90s and 2000s but none of them were hits.

To be fair, some of the films he made were pretty bad, Wild Bill, Last Man Standing and Supernova were some good examples. Don’t waste your time on those films. I haven’t seen his last film, Bullet to the Head, but from what I read it’s another one of his bad films. Not many people know this but he’s one of the producers of the Alien franchise and at one point he’s going to direct Alien 3 before David Fincher was hired. I’m not sure if Hill will ever make another great film, seems to me he sort of gotten lazy and don’t care about his work anymore.

5. Mimi Leder

Director_MimiLederLeder’s been doing TV work for a while and then got a chance of lifetime by directing Dreamworks’ studio first big action film, The Peacemaker. Apparently Spielberg was so impressed with her work on the TV show E.R. that he personally offered her the gig. The film wasn’t a big hit but it got her to direct another big film, 1998′s Deep Impact, it’s one of the biggest hits of the summer. After Deep Impact‘s success, I thought for sure she’s be doing more tent pole type of films. But she decided to do a drama, Pay It Forward, it was ravaged by critics and many people hated it, especially the downer of an ending. After this film’s failure, she went back and only work on TV series.

It’s a shame that Leder never got a chance to make more action movies since she’s one of the few female directors in Hollywood and she knows how to shoot good action scenes. That climax in The Peacemaker was one of the best action sequences I’ve ever seen.

Honorable mention:

Director_MNightI didn’t want to put him on the list because it’s too obvious but M. Night Shyamalan‘s career has been on the downhill slide ever since TIME magazine put him on the cover and called him the next Steven Spielberg. Well as we all know that statement turned out to be WRONG! After I saw The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable, I thought he’s one of the great young directors at the time. I didn’t mind Signs like some people did, but then he made the atrocious The Village followed by an even more atrocious film, Lady in the Water. I skipped The Happening and The Last Airbender because they looked so bad and I already gave up on him. He’s now on my list of hack directors working in Hollywood today. His newest film, After Earth, doesn’t look too appealing to me and [surprise, surprise] it underperformed again at the box office.

Is there any hope for M. Night to make another good movie? I don’t know, he’s still relatively young and obviously Hollywood studios don’t mind footing the bills for his films. But I think he needs to work with some good writers and only handle the directing part.

TedS_post


What do you think folks? Are you a fan of any of the directors I mentioned? Feel free to comment below.

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66 thoughts on “Random Thoughts: What happened to these directors’ (once-promising) career?

    • Thanks Nick.

      I don’t know about Peter Weir though, he seems to be one of those directors who makes films only when he wants to and can find anyone to finance it, similar to Kubrick and Malick. I’m pretty sure if he decides he wants to make a big budget film again, studio executives would be willing to hire him, can’t say the same for the directors I mentioned.

      • I agree Ted, I think Weir is a director who still puts out good quality films (even with a low budget) that garner positive critical response, even if the box-office isn’t ignited. His films, including Truman Show, are always worth a look. Unlike many of the films the above directors have made.

    • Thanks Joseph, it’s sad to see M. Night’s career gone down the toilet so fast. I don’t know if he’ll ever recover, so many movie fans are bashing him now.

  1. Great read! Love seeing Streets of Fire mentioned. I’ve seen that a couple of times and in a way it’s so bad it’s good. Corny to its core!!! LOL

    • Thanks Keith, yeah I really enjoyed Streets of Fire too, kind of feel bad for Walter Hill because I don’t think he never recovered the film’s failure.

  2. Hi, Ted and company:

    Great listing and thumbnails!

    A few of these (M. Night, Chris Hanson and Neil Jordan) made their marks very early and have rested on their cultish laurels ever since. And in film, especially for directors; you are only as good as your last film. Hence, their sitting idle. Or generating far below previous levels.

    While unsung masters like Walter Hill established their beach head long ago and keep on plugging. Personally, I’d like to see him directing and John Milius writing for the next film in the ‘RED’ franchise. I think it would be awesome!

    • Hey Jack, great point about Hill working with John Milius, man that would be awesome if both of them teams up and do an epic action/adventure!

  3. Walter Hill is a guy I like though I’ve heard mixed reviews towards “Bullet to the Head” though some say it’s a step in the right direction. Neil Jordan is a hit-miss director these days though if he’s getting good material, you know it will be good. I’ve never heard of Mimi Leder’s name and now I know why. “Deep Impact” was OK but man, I hated “Pay It Forward”. She should stick to doing TV.

    John Singleton is a director with promise but blew it as well and directing Taylor Lautner in an action movie (who the fuck came up with that idea?) Curtis Hanson is a filmmaker I like though I don’t think “Chasing Mavericks” was entire his fault since he only directed some of the film leaving Michael Apted to finish it.

    There is one name of a filmmaker who had it and then lost it. Michael Cimino which is probably the biggest name. Had a great debut with “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot” and then won an Oscar for “The Deer Hunter”. Then bankrupted a studio with “Heaven’s Gate” and made a couple of more failures in the 80s and two more in the 90s and hasn’t made a feature film since 1996 and recently shot a short segment for an anthology film in 2007.

    • Hey Nin, thanks for stopping by.

      Good trivia about Michael Apted finishing up directing Chasing Mavericks, I didn’t know that. But I was never interested in seeing the film anyway, ha ha.

      I thought of including Cimino on the list but I think he pretty much put an end to his own career by being such egomaniac, he was sort of like JJ Abrams of his time, many studio folks loved him at the time and if he’d put in ego in check, he might still be working today. I really enjoyed Thunderbolt and Lightfoot and since Eastwood was the star, he was able to keep Cimino under his leash. To be honest with you I always felt The Deer Hunter was a bit overrated, good but not great. To me Cimino’s best film was Year of the Dragon, yes the miscasting of Mickey Rourke was too obvious but I thought John Lone was excellent as the big gangster wannabe.

      You should stop by again soon, I wrote a piece about Cimino’s Heaven’s Gate, hope you’ll enjoy reading it. :)

    • Hi, Ninvoid:

      Excellent catch with Cimino!

      The studios proved their lack of savvy and intelligence when they gave Cimino carte blanche to drive it and them into near bankruptcy with a sadly mediocre film.

      And yes, Ted. Mickey Rourke was completely miscast for ‘Year of the Dragon’. One of those films where Rourke was still trying to find and define himself.

    • Kinka didn’t make the list because he only made one movie and it failed. The point of this article was about directors who have successes in the past, commercially, critically or both. But their careers seemed to have gone down hill in recent years.

    • Ahah, you tell him, Chris!! I hear ya, but I so loved Unbreakable that maybe, just maybe, he might be able to get his mojo back one day :D

    • Ha ha yeah, M. Night is no longer getting a pass for making crappy films anymore. But I do think he can still make good films again, he just need to find good script and stop writing.

  4. M. Night doesn’t deserve any more chances. I’m to the point where I don’t think he was ever a good director in the first place. I think he got a lot of help while making The Sixth Sense, and when he was given all the power after the success of that movie, he blew it. Time and Time again. You know you’re a bad director when even the studio doesn’t want to advertise with your name on the product. (Another Earth) I think if John Singleton strayed away from more racial stereotypes, he’d get more credit.

    • I don’t agree with you that M. Night’s a bad director, he just wrote crappy scripts. As much as I hated The Village, I thought the film was well shot and looked great, he even got good performances from his actors even though the script was ridiculous. Same with Signs. But then started making Lady in the Water and everything went south for him.

      As for Singleton, I don’t know how many films he can make about life in the hood. Just like Spike Lee, he tried to jump into more mainstream films but it just didn’t work out well for him.

  5. Nice article. I guess some people just don’t find the right projects, others have a brief flare of talent which end up fading unfortunately (i.e. George Lucas).

    • Good point about Lucas, ha ha. The man can come up with great ideas but he’s not that good of a director, The Star Wars prequels were good examples.

  6. Does Mary Harron count?I’ve felt like her career should have took of after American Psycho,although i think i read somewhere she didn’t like the scripts she got offered after that film so perhaps she doesn’t want to be a big director. Still, i would like her to become more of a household name.

    • No, I wouldn’t put Harron on this list, as I mentioned above, the criteria for this article was that the director must’ve done something successful in the past, box office or critical hits or both. I don’t think Harron ever got that kind of recognition.

  7. It’s a given that M Night was gonna show up on a list like this – an entire thesis could be written on what has gone so horribly wrong for him. Night needs to simply stop. Stop directing, stop writing, and stop being involved with film at all. He’s used his One Big Idea (SIxth Sense) and while I thought he stuck luck on Unbreakable and Signs (not a bad film, if I do say so), everything after that has been the same one-trick pony trotted out time and again. Last Airbender was atrocious, and After Earth feels to me a lot like a Battlefield Earth style debacle – I have no plans to ever see it, save maybe as a curiosity one rainy afternoon.

    Personally, I always thought Mimi Leder got the short end of the stick – I thought Deep Impact was solid (and better emotionally than Armageddon) while The Peacemaker was a nice jumping-off point, with terrific Clooney and so-so Kidman. I actually didn’t mind Pay It Forward (I think it’s one of Helen Hunt’s better roles) but can understand how most might not – that said, I think she should be given another chance to go the blockbuster route again (unless she doesn’t want the job, of course) – because we need more women making films these days. Katherine Bigelow is proof of that.

    I haven’t seen Bullet To The Head yet (it’s on my current to-see pile) but Walter Hill should probably just stick to producing or get out of it altoegther. I haven’t seen a film of his l really liked yet. John Singleton has just been the victim of terrible choices and scripts – 2 Fast 2 Furious was a diabolical mess, Abduction was teen-lite crapola, and Shaft had too many plot points for a single crime-caper film to work. If it wasn’t for Sam Jackson and Christian Bale in that movie, it woulda been a complete turd. I think Singleton has a great blockbuster film in him, but I think (a lot like Spike Lee) he should stick to the powerhouse dramatic work he made his name with.

    • We’re pretty much in agreement here Rodney, although I still believe that M. Night can still make a good movie again but with the failure of “After Earth”, he might get demoted to doing TV movies or shows. I think he should take a long break, I’m saying 5 to 10 years and try to make a comeback or something, fans are clearly not going to see his films anymore.

      I was excited to see Hill’s Bullet to the Head but after several negative reviews, I’m not too thrill about it now. I think the last good movie he made was Extreme Prejudice (1987), a great modern day western, check it out if you haven’t seen it yet.

    • Yeah I don’t care much for Richard Kelly’s work, after the semi success of Donnie Darko, it didn’t make any money in theater but of course it has a cult following; he hasn’t done anything good since. I wasted hours of my life I couldn’t get back by watching his last two flicks, Southland Tales and The Box, two awful movies.

      • I actually liked Southland Tales although The Box was not good at all. Richard Matheson’s brilliant short story “Button, Button” just wasn’t mean’t to be stretched into a full length feature. Also let’s not forget Kelly wrote the screenplay for Domino directed by Tony Scott.

        • I only saw it once and I don’t know if I want to sit through it again, but there were some films where I hate at first but then I end up enjoying it the second time around. I might give Southland Tales another try.

          • Well you’re not in the minority. It was roundly panned at Cannes.It was just kind of a beautiful mess that overreached and didn’t quite get there.. I really dug the soundtrack with Moby scoring. The Pixies, Jane’s Addiction and who could forget “Teen Horniness is Not A Crime”. LOL. I thought Kelly’s idea to write 3 graphic novels as a prequel leading up to the film was kinda interesting. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Southland_Tales:_The_Prequel_Saga

    • Yup, after he was on the cover of TIME magazine, he thought of himself as some sort of special director and couldn’t do no wrong.

  8. Ted, John Singleton is one of the best examples for this question. I think at some point he decided to focus on his work as a producer and just direct some action movies to have some fun. I haven’t seen Four Brothers, so that might be an exception, however. I still can’t believe he directed Abduction from what I saw in the trailers. I feel like Baby Boy was an interesting film that got overlooked, but that was basically it in terms of exciting choices.

    • Yeah, that’s what I assume happened to Singleton. Four Brothers wasn’t bad but I still don’t know why it even got made into a big budget film, the story felt like a made for TV movie.

  9. John McTiernan comes to mind. His remake of The Thomas Crown Affair in ’99 was quite good only to be followed up by the awful remake of Rollerball. One of the best action directors out there but with his well documented trouble with the law I wonder if we’ll see the likes of him again.

    How about Luc Besson. He’s been doing a lot of writing and producing lately but La Femme Nikita, Leon: The Professional and The Fifth Element were all the way back in the ’90′s. Oddly enough he has a mob themed comedy, set in France, called The Family due out soon. It stars De Niro, Pfeiffer and Tommy Lee Jones

    Ted, if you thought Singleton’s Boyz in the Hood was dope back in the day check out Fruitvale Station. Michael B Jordan from HBO’s The Wire and Chronicle makes a star making turn in the film.

    • Good point about McTiernan Dave, I still want my money back from his awful Rollerball remake, god that was awful!

      Yeah Besson could belong on this list too, he seemed to just want to write and produce cheap/crappy action films.

      I’ve heard good things about Fruitvale Station, the writer and director lived here in MN for a while so the local media here did a story on him a few months back since his new film got national attention.

      • I read recently that John McTiernan isn’t doing very well in jail, which is sad. But who knows? After his 12 month sentence is up, it might be a life experience he can put to good use in his directing career.

  10. Great post! I think Hanson and Jordan could make a comeback, but it looks harder for the other directors you mentioned. Though, I’d love to see M. Night Shyamalan make another critically acclaimed film. It’s been a while, after all. ;)

    • Thanks Josh, yeah I think M. Night might be able to salvage his career and reputation again since he’s still young. But he needs to take a break from Hollywood and disappear for a while so people would forget about him. Then hopefully he’ll come out with something good, make a small thriller or drama or something different and with no twist ending. Just a good solid storytelling.

  11. I had forgotten how popular a couple of people on this list were, Walter Hill and Curtis Hanson. Hanson in particular had a huge part in defining neo-noir…maybe he should have continued in that genre.

    re: M. Night…I remember at the time of THE VILLAGE it came out that there was a young-adult novel, from I think the 1970s, that was almost exactly like it, plot twists and all. The girl on the cover was dressed like the girls in the movie. That couldn’t have helped his cause. I agree, it was a great-looking and well-shot picture.

    • Yeah, for a while Hill and Hanson were quite respected in the industry but after many flops, they’re not getting good job offers anymore.

      You know I think i remember M. Night was getting a lot of flag from people when The Village came out, some said he copied some novel and it must’ve been the book you’re referring to.

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  13. Some great thoughts here, Ted. You know, I am curious about Byzantium as well and it still isn’t playing in my area. I had forgotten about John Singleton as well. Sometimes directors seem to let the critics get the best of them it seems. I dunno. I think Leder could’ve done more. Hopefully she does.

    I often wonder about F. Gary Gray. I mean, I loved The Negotiator and The Italian Job. Law Abiding Citizen and Man Apart weren’t terrible. But where has he been lately?

    Great article. Loved reading it.

    • Thanks T., I think Singleton can still make a comeback, just as long as he stop making cheesy action flick starring some teen actor. He needs to find a good script or write one himself and work with an independent studio since he seems to hate working with big studios. It’s been a while for Leder so I assume she’s comfortable just doing TV work.

      Great mention about F. Gary Gray, Yeah I really enjoyed those two films you mentioned and I even liked his cheesy action flick, Surviving the Game starring Ice T. Also, I loved Friday, used to watch it many times back in school and college. He hasn’t been doing much work lately.

  14. Good list. I still hold out hope for some of these directors though. As for M. Night Shyamalan, I think his biggest crimes are not against directing, but acting!

    • Ha ha yeah, M. Night shouldn’t stop appearing in his own films, he can’t act at all. Tarantino should do the same too, he can’t act either, his appearance in Django Unchained was one of the worse cameo by a director since well M. Night appeared in all of his films.

      • Oops! Meant to say: “M. Night SHOULD stop…” not shouldn’t, the man can’t act at all. It’s funny that most good directors can’t act but somehow able to direct their actors, lol.

  15. I loved FOUR BROTHERS. Maybe more than others. That’s when Singleton came into my cross hairs. But given his track record with films, I wouldn’t say that he’s prolific enough to be missed.

    INTERVIEW WITH A VAMPIRE I think set the bar, for modern day interpretation of Vampire flicks. The TWILIGHT fiasco always had me educating people on the brutality of Lestat and the reluctant vampire archetype of Louis. A shame that we haven’t seen more of him since. So I’m super fucking excited for BYZANTIUM!

    Hansen’s not too recognizable to me. But I am eagerly awaiting CHASING MAVERICKS. I find Butler does better movies when they’re not comedies… and especially when they’re underrated movies that come out of nowhere, such as MACHINE GUN PREACHER.

    I don’t recognize Hill too much either, but another of his recents is on my list too. I would like to see what he did with BULLET TO THE HEAD.

    Good list Ruth. I’d like to include some directors that I’m always on the look out for such as: Wayne Kramer (THE COOLER), Terry George (HOTEL RWANDA) Duncan Jones (MOON, THE SOURCE CODE) Troy Duffy (THE BOONDOCK SAINTS) although we all know why his film career bombed.

      • I’ll refrain from reading it until I watch the movie myself. Otherwise it’ll dilute my perceptions of the movie. He’s a good actor. Needs to stop doing rom-coms and all out action movies. He sucks at those too.

          • I think stuff that is contrary to what his ‘image’ is, works best. I haven’t seen CHASING MAVERICKS, but I was surprised a guy like him did MACHINE GUN PREACHER.

            More dramatic roles like that would be awesome. He should take some notes of the careers of Michael Fassbender, and Aaron Eckhart. Similarly good looking mainstream guys who have as many ‘small’ movies to their credit along with the big budget pictures.

            • Ah I see, good point there Shah. I thought his performance in MGP was solid, and if you’ve seen Rocknrolla, he’s obviously perfect in action comedies too. He’s a natural comic, especially when paired with awesome Brits like Idris Elba and Tom Hardy. He was also good in Coriolanus with Ralph Fiennes.

              Yep, he definitely needs to learn from Fassbender and even his buddy Bradley Cooper (their pics at Wimbledon went viral a couple of wks ago), both of them have moved on being typecast despite their good looks. I give Butler props for always trying something new though.

              • I forgot about ROCKNROLLA. You’re right. He’s a funny, charming dude… with horrible choice in movies.

                He’s gotta do an author backed role or something. CORIOLANUS should’ve been good, but that Shakespeare stuff goes over my head.

                • Yep, I always say he needs to fire his manager/agent, but unfortunately it’s his BFF Alan (yeah I knew a lot about GB as I used to be a huge fan of his for at least 5 years!).

                  Yep, he REALLY needs to pick good roles, I mean seriously, now that he’s got his own production company, I can’t believe the kind of s*#% he still signs on to!

                  Ahah yeah, that Shakespeare stuff is hard to discern but I thought it was surprisingly engaging.

                  • Yes. You know WAY too much. :| You have an IMDB Pro account don’t you!? :P

                    Here’s hoping he does better stuff and doesn’t just fade into film history.

                    • Ahah no, you don’t need the Pro account to know that :D He’s the only A list actor I’ve met but I’ve gone sour now as he picked such terrible projects. Yeah, he better turn things around FAST!

    • Wow, if you loved Four Brothers, then you should check out his earlier work, such as Boys N the Hood, Rosewood and even the not so great Shaft reboot/remake. I disagree though that he’s not prolific, he made 9 feature films and three of them were box office hits. But after his last movie, Abduction, it’s going to be hard for him to get a descent gig again. He needs to make a smaller film again, maybe with a independent studio this time. He’s still pretty young so I think he can still make a comeback.

      You should check out some of Hanson’s earlier work, especially LA Confidential and Wonder Boys.

      Well hate to repeat myself again but you should look up Hill’s resume on IMDB and check out some of his earlier work, especially Extreme Prejudice, 48 Hrs., The Long Riders, The Driver and Streets of Fire. Great action films of the late 70s and early 80s. He hasn’t done anything good for a long time though, so I don’t have high hopes for Bullet to the Head.

      Kramer I think can still churn out some good flicks down the road, he’s done mostly small pictures so there’s no risk of him ruining his career. Same with Terry George, he seems to want to stick with smaller projects and doesn’t want to work on big budget films, he turned down a chance to direct American Gangster a few years back.

      Duncan Jones is on the rise, he’s one of my favorite young directors today. Let’s hope he can deliver a good film out of World of Warcraft. I think the less I say about Troy Duffy the better, the man has no talent, just a Quentin Tarantino wannabe.

      • I have seen BOYS N THE HOOD, and love that movie too. I didn’t realize it was the same Director until Ruth’s post. Personally, I don’t think he’s that awesome, despite his success. To me, a prolific Director is someone who’s delivered consistently across a variety of work. And I rarely measure box office success as ‘success’ in filmmaking.

        I must admit, I did IMDB both Hill & Hansen during this post. That’s how I realized I wasn’t too familiar with their work. I might check out some of the films you recommended. Can’t hurt.

        I didn’t mention those other Directors because I was disappointed in their careers, but more so that we haven’t gotten anything recent from them in a while. As much as I understand that sometimes genius comes with exclusivity and not churning out movies every 2 years, these guys are so good that I’m hungry for more from them. Hence the complaints.

        I just wonder what Duffy could’ve done IF he didn’t fuck himself over. Would’ve been interesting to see his growth as a Director. Oh well…

        • I agree that he’s never been a consistent director but then we can say that to most of the directors working in Hollywood today. Well maybe not Nolan since he hasn’t done a bad movie yet.

          Yeah, check out some of their earlier work, hopefully you’ll enjoy some of them.

          I don’t know if Duffy would ever become a household name, he’s too full of himself and in my opinion, not that talented. Did you ever see a documentary about Troy Duffy’s quick rise and very fast fall in the movie business? It’s called Overnight, it’s very good and you can see how big of a dick Duffy is and I’m thankful that he never became a big time director, he’s a big douche! Do check out Overnight if you’ve never seen it: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0390336/?ref_=sr_4

          • Hey Ted. I actually did see Overnight. And you’re absolutely right. He’s such a dick. I personally enjoyed the first movie, the second revealed his hack-ness.

            I just feel that a guy with no formal film training off of the street did a pretty good job with BOONDOCK SAINTS… Makes me wonder how a few years in the Industry might have tempered his douchey-ness and maybe honed his skills more. But we’ll never know.

            • Sadly Hollywood is not known for tempering anyone’s douchey-ness. Just ask the “king of the world” James Cameron. LOL. Personally the only thing I took away from The Boondock Saints is Dafoe’s performance. The movie just felt like Tarantino lite and not in a good way.. IMHO Skip Wood’s underrated Thursday was the best of the Tarantino lite bunch.

              • Well said Dave, if you’re already douche, you’re going to be a bigger douche if you became famous. In Duffy’s mind, he’s better than most people in Hollywood and quite delusional. I don’t feel bad at all about what happened to him, he truly deserved it. And I totally agree with you about Boondock Saints, he tried too hard to copy QT’s films.

                I’ve never seen Thursday, might have to check it out.

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