Entertainment

The Best Movies About Real Artists

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Vote up the best biographical movies about painters, sculptors, and other types of visual artists.

On this list of the best artist biopics, you’ll find movies detailing the lives of painters, sculptors, visual artists, and a whole host of others spanning the centuries from the Renaissance to the present. Artists live such rich lives, full of volatile emotion and undeniable talent, making them perfect subjects for biographical films.


One of the best artist biopics of all time is
Frida, starring Salma Hayek as Frida Kahlo and Alfred Molina as her husband, the artist Diego Rivera. Hayek was nominated for an Academy Award for her performance, and she set the bar high for artist biopics. Also on this list, you will find the exceptional The Agony and the Ecstasy, starring the one and only Charlton Heston as Michelangelo during his painting of the Sistine Chapel.

Other essential artist biopics on the list include Basquiat, Pollock, and Vincent and Theo, a film about the mercurial Vincent Van Gogh and his loyal but volatile brother Theo. Vote up the best artist biopics below, and be sure to let us know what you think in the comment section. 

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  • Frida
    1
    Salma Hayek, Alfred Molina, Geoffrey Rush
    • Released: 2002
    • Directed by: Julie Taymor
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  • Basquiat
    2
    Jeffrey Wright, David Bowie, Courtney Love
    • Released: 1996
    • Directed by: Julian Schnabel
  • Big Eyes
    3
    Amy Adams, Christoph Waltz, Danny Huston
    • Released: 2014
    • Directed by: Tim Burton
  • Loving Vincent
    4
    Douglas Booth, Robert Gulaczyk, Eleanor Tomlinson
    • Released: 2017
    • Directed by: Dorota Kobiela, Hugh Welchman
  • Pollock
    5
    Ed Harris, Marcia Gay Harden, Amy Madigan
    • Released: 2000
    • Directed by: Ed Harris
  • Girl with a Pearl Earring
    6
    Colin Firth, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Wilkinson
    • Released: 2003
    • Directed by: Peter Webber
  • At Eternity's Gate
    7
    Willem Dafoe, Rupert Friend, Oscar Isaac
    • Released: 2018
    • Directed by: Julian Schnabel
  • Lust for Life
    8
    Kirk Douglas, Anthony Quinn, Everett Sloane
    • Released: 1956
    • Directed by: Vincente Minnelli
  • Goya's Ghosts
    9
    Javier Bardem, Natalie Portman, Stellan Skarsgård
    • Released: 2006
    • Directed by: Milos Forman
  • Vincent & Theo
    10
    Tim Roth, Paul Rhys, Adrian Brine
    • Released: 1990
    • Directed by: Robert Altman
  • Renoir
    11
    Michel Bouquet, Christa Théret, Vincent Rottiers
    • Released: 2012
    • Directed by: Gilles Bourdos
  • Maudie
    12
    Sally Hawkins, Ethan Hawke, Kari Matchett
    • Released: 2016
    • Directed by: Aisling Walsh
  • The Agony and the Ecstasy
    13
    Charlton Heston, Rex Harrison, Diane Cilento
    • Released: 1965
    • Directed by: Carol Reed
  • Edvard Munch
    14
    Geir Westby, Gro Fraas, Johan Halsborg
    • Released: 1975
    • Directed by: Peter Watkins
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  • Modigliani
    15
    Andy Garcia, Eva Herzigová, Peter Capaldi
    • Released: 2004
    • Directed by: Mick Davis
  • Mr. Turner
    16
    Timothy Spall, Dorothy Atkinson, Marion Bailey
    • Released: 2014
    • Directed by: Mike Leigh
  • Surviving Picasso
    17
    Anthony Hopkins, Natascha McElhone, Julianne Moore
    • Released: 1996
    • Directed by: James Ivory
  • The Danish Girl
    18
    Eddie Redmayne, Alicia Vikander, Ben Whishaw
    • Released: 2015
    • Directed by: Tom Hooper
  • Lautrec
    19
    Elsa Zylberstein, Claude Rich, Anémone
    • Released: 1998
    • Directed by: Roger Planchon
  • Factory Girl
    20
    Sienna Miller, Guy Pearce, Hayden Christensen
    • Released: 2006
    • Directed by: George Hickenlooper
  • Georgia O'Keeffe
    21
    Jeremy Irons, Joan Allen, Ed Begley
    • Released: 2009
    • Directed by: Bob Balaban
  • Van Gogh
    22
    Jacques Dutronc, Elsa Zylberstein, Bernard Le Coo
    • Released: 1991
    • Directed by: Maurice Pialat
  • Andrei Rublev
    23
    Anatoliy Solonitsyn, Ivan Lapikov, Nikolay Grinko
    • Released: 1966
    • Directed by: Andrei Tarkovsky
  • Klimt
    24
    John Malkovich, Saffron Burrows, Veronica Ferres
    • Released: 2006
    • Directed by: Raúl Ruiz
  • Séraphine
    25
    Yolande Moreau, Ulrich Tukur, Serge Larivière
    • Released: 2008
    • Directed by: Martin Provost