List of the top directors of the 2000s. From 2000 to 2009, the best directors of all time were able to push out some of their greatest endeavors yet. Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings movies set high standards for the 21st century filmmakers, but other directors of the 2000s rose to the occasion. Look no further than the two Andersons, Paul Thomas Anderson and Wes Anderson, whose indie films turned into box office hits during the decade. Ron Howard, another actor-turned-director, impressed critics with A Beautiful Mind and Cinderella Man, while Jason Reitman hit a three-for-three with movies like Thank You For Smoking, Juno, and Up in the Air. Two female directors were also incredibly important in the 2000s, not only with Sofia Coppola's Lost in Translation, but also with Kathryn Bigelow changing the landscape forever with her 2009 Best Director Academy Award for The Hurt Locker.