Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Killer cars? Flying fish? Notable directors with unusual starts

The most recent batch of Academy Award contenders to come out – 12 Years a Slave, The Contender, Gravity, etc. – all come from renowned or at least established directors. Except for perhaps Neil Blomkamp and Benh Zeitlin, few directors can claim that their first films received Oscar nods. Where, then, did these acclaimed directors get their starts?

It's probably not surprising that many had inauspicious starts. The folks at mental_floss put together a surprising and entertaining list of first major works by notable film figures. Though Christopher Nolan got his start in dark, psychological thrillers early in his career, others like James Cameron and Francis Ford Coppola were slumming it with movies like Piranha II: The Spawning. If anything, this proves that you should never judge a director by their first work... unless, like Stanley Kubrick, they decide to destroy it.

For the curious, most of these films are available in Media Services. Maybe this weekend you'll want to watch an early Spielberg movie about killer trucks!

THX 1138 – HU DVD 1401
Shallow Grave – HU DVD 1910
Fear and Desire – HU DVD 2675
The Squaw Man – HU DVD 3701
Following – HU DVD 3886
The Duellists – HU DVD 5368
Dark Star – HU DVD 6517
Duel – HU DVD 7047
Dementia 13 – HU DVD 864

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