Film Directors The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked  

Ranker Film
1.9k votes 359 voters 59.1k views 37 items

Films like 12 Years a Slave have made movie history and garnered tons of awards for black, British film director, Steve McQueen. The spotlight is on the absolute best black directors in movie history who have made some amazing, award winning films. Who are the best black directors? Vote up the best directors below based on their bodies of work.

This list features the best black directors, including both African American directors and black film directors from other countries. These visionaries are responsible for helming some of the greatest films in movie history, and has been ranked by users to determine who is truly the best. The films of these awesome directors include Hunger, Daughters of the Dust, To Sleep With Anger, Badou Boy, and The Exile.

Some of the directors on this list include Spike Lee, Denzel Washington, F. Gary Gray, John Singleton, Tyler Perry, Kasi Lemmons, Forest Whitaker, and Sidney Poitier. Vote up the black director you think is the absolute best, or add someone who isn't already on the list.
list ordered by

1
146 66
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Malcolm X, Jungle Fever, Do The Right Thing

2
24 2
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ShawnReynolds added Get Out

3
123 55
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Antwone Fisher, The Great Debaters

4
76 26
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Poetic Justice, Shaft, 2 Fast 2 Furious

5
89 35
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12 Years a Slave, Shame, Hunger

6
35 5
Ryan Coogler is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
ShawnReynolds added Fruitvale Station, Creed

7
72 30
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Hope Floats, Strapped, Waiting to Exhale

8
65 27
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Training Day, The Replacement Killers, Olympus Has Fallen

9
53 21
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The Italian Job, Be Cool, A Man Apart

10
40 17
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The Book of Eli, Broken City, Dead Presidents

11
54 34
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Fast Forward, A Piece of the Action, Stir Crazy

12
22 8
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ShawnReynolds added Selma, Middle of Nowhere, I Will Follow

13
22 10
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In The Hive, Phantom Punch, Franternity Boys

14
28 16
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Shaft, The Learning Tree, Flavio

15
23 12
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Dead Presidents, American Pimp, The Book of Eli

16
35 24
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Identity Crisis, Bellyful, Don't Play Us Cheap

17
24 14
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Best Man Holiday, Scary Movie 5, Soul Men

18
42 31
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19
31 21
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Miles Ahead, House of Lies

20
19 13
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The Caveman's Valentine, Eve's Bayou, Talk to Me

21
22 16
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Moolaadé, Black Girl, Borom Sarret

22
26 20
Hype Williams is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Belly, Babyface: A Collection of Hit Videos, MTV 20: Jams

23
42 36
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Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion, Madea's Witness Protection, Madea's Class Reunion

24
33 28
Will Smith is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
All of Us

25
17 16
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Daughters of the Dust, The Rosa Parks Story, Subway Stories

26
6 5
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ShawnReynolds added Medicine for Melancholy, A Woman's Tale, Almost

27
12 14
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Cool Red, Gordon's War, Black Girl

28
12 14
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The Newsroom, House of Cards, Homeland

29
13 16
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PeteBoyle added The Double, Community, Submarine

30
1 3
Omowale Akintunde is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Omowale added Omowale Akintunde

31
11 16
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42 One Dream Rush, Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation, The Glass Shield

32
9 15
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Swing!, The Virgin of the Seminole, The Betrayal

33
4 11
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Hyenas, Le Franc, The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun

34
4 11
Med Hondo is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Sarraounia, West Indies, O

35
6 14
William Greaves is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take 2 1/2, Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One, From These Roots

36
4 12
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The Nine Muses, Testament, The Last Angel of History

37
4 12
Anike Bay is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
AnikeBay added Anike Bay Girls Like Us, Girls Like Us 2.0! The Hustle! The Game, Girls Like Us Menage "A" Trios(Preproduction)