Whenever you watch a movie, it’s easy to forget how many people are involved in making it. You tend to pay most attention to the people on screen and forget about the work that everyone’s done behind the scenes. Although directors get more credit than most of the crew, it’s still easy to forget the part they play. Sometimes, they go under the radar so much that we fail to realize that the director is actually a famous actor. Many big screen stars have taken up position behind the camera and produced some of the best movies out there.
People may think of his comedy roles when Ben Stiller comes to mind, but the actor has talent offscreen as well as on it. Throughout his career, he’s directed seven films to varying degrees of success. His most prominent releases have been the 2001 comedy “Zoolander,” which has become something of a cult classic, and the more successful 2008 action comedy “Tropic Thunder.” The latter film amassed almost $190 million at the box office and was credited by several critics as one of the best movies released that year, if not that decade.
The Hollywood heartthrob is best known as an actor, but he’s been known to get behind the camera on occasion. His directorial debut began with the spy comedy “Confessions of a Dangerous Mind” which performed okay, albeit a little underwhelming. Although not all of his films have been great, with 2017 black comedy “Suburbicon” a particular disappointment with critics and fans, his 2005 historical drama “Good Night, and Good Luck” was a real standout. Many critics raved about the film which pulled in $56.5 million at the box office, and Clooney was subsequently nominated for an Oscar, Bafta and a Golden Globe for his directing.
For over a decade now, Ben Affleck has been wowing audiences with his directorial efforts. Although his first release, the mystery drama “Gone Baby Gone,” didn’t perform brilliantly at the box office, it did gain heaps of praise from critics. His follow-up effort crime thriller “The Town” received equally impressive reviews, landing him a spot on the National Board of Review’s top ten films of the year. Unlike his earlier film, “The Town,” was a big hit at the box office, more than quadrupling its budget of $37 million. Funnily enough, Affleck didn’t just direct this film, but also starred in it and contributed to the screenplay. A man of many talents.
One man who’s no stranger to working behind the camera is Clint Eastwood. He’s been directing films since the ‘70s after getting his start with the thriller “Play Misty For Me.” The movie was a success with both viewers and critics, pulling in over 10 times more than its budget at the box office. Since then, he’s directed over 35 films in a variety of different genres. His diversity is one of Eastwood’s greatest skills, although he still works best in the genre that brought him to attention as an actor – the western. “Unforgiven,” a film that Eastwood directed, produced and starred in back in the ‘90s, is probably his best-known work. It earned $159.2 million at the box office (compared to a budget of $14 million) and won him his first Academy Award as a director.
It takes a lot of work to become a good actor, let alone director, producer or screenwriter on top of that. These famous faces have proved they are just as capable behind the camera as they are in front of it, and we can’t help but admire them even more. Let’s hope they keep directing films for many years to come.