film directors The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked  

Ranker Film
1.6k votes 307 voters 55k views 36 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.

129 59
Ranker Video
Spike Lee Malcolm X, Jungle Fever, Do The Right Thing

111 48
Ranker Video
Denzel Washington Antwone Fisher, The Great Debaters

78 29
Ranker Video
Steve McQueen 12 Years a Slave, Shame, Hunger

65 24
Ranker Video
Forest Whitaker Hope Floats, Strapped, Waiting to Exhale

63 24
Ranker Video
John Singleton Poetic Justice, Shaft, 2 Fast 2 Furious

59 23
Ranker Video
Antoine Fuqua Training Day, The Replacement Killers, Olympus Has Fallen

47 15
Ranker Video
F. Gary Gray The Italian Job, Be Cool, A Man Apart

34 14
Ranker Video
Allen Hughes The Book of Eli, Broken City, Dead Presidents

20 4
Ryan Coogler is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
ShawnReynolds added Ryan Coogler Fruitvale Station, Creed

50 32
Ranker Video
Sidney Poitier Fast Forward, A Piece of the Action, Stir Crazy

16 5
Ranker Video
ShawnReynolds added Ava DuVernay Selma, Middle of Nowhere, I Will Follow

25 14
Ranker Video
Gordon Parks Shaft, The Learning Tree, Flavio

29 18
Ranker Video
Don Cheadle Miles Ahead, House of Lies

11 2
Ranker Video
ShawnReynolds added Jordan Peele Get Out

Celebrities Who Weren't Born Where You Think

31 21
Ranker Video
Melvin Van Peebles Identity Crisis, Bellyful, Don't Play Us Cheap

36 26
Ranker Video

18 10
Ranker Video
Albert Hughes Dead Presidents, American Pimp, The Book of Eli

21 13
Ranker Video
Ousmane Sembène Moolaadé, Black Girl, Borom Sarret

24 16
Hype Williams is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Hype Williams Belly, Babyface: A Collection of Hit Videos, MTV 20: Jams

16 9
Ranker Video
Robert Townsend In The Hive, Phantom Punch, Franternity Boys

33 28
Ranker Video
Tyler Perry Tyler Perry's Madea's Family Reunion, Madea's Witness Protection, Madea's Class Reunion

Movies From Black Directors Every Film Lover Should See

17 13
Ranker Video
Malcolm D. Lee Best Man Holiday, Scary Movie 5, Soul Men

25 23
Will Smith is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Will Smith All of Us

12 11
Ranker Video
Ossie Davis Cool Red, Gordon's War, Black Girl

12 13
Ranker Video
Julie Dash Daughters of the Dust, The Rosa Parks Story, Subway Stories

12 13
Ranker Video
Kasi Lemmons The Caveman's Valentine, Eve's Bayou, Talk to Me

2 2
Ranker Video
ShawnReynolds added Barry Jenkins Medicine for Melancholy, A Woman's Tale, Almost

11 12
Ranker Video
Carl Franklin The Newsroom, House of Cards, Homeland

12 14
Ranker Video
PeteBoyle added Richard Ayoade The Double, Community, Submarine

9 13
Ranker Video
Charles Burnett 42 One Dream Rush, Namibia: The Struggle for Liberation, The Glass Shield

4 8
Med Hondo is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
Med Hondo Sarraounia, West Indies, O

4 8
Ranker Video
Djibril Diop Mambéty Hyenas, Le Franc, The Little Girl Who Sold the Sun

4 8
Anike Bay is listed (or ranked) 33 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)

7 12
Ranker Video
Oscar Micheaux Swing!, The Virgin of the Seminole, The Betrayal

5 10
William Greaves is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Very Best Black Directors, Ranked
William Greaves Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take 2 1/2, Symbiopsychotaxiplasm: Take One, From These Roots

4 9
Ranker Video
John Akomfrah The Nine Muses, Testament, The Last Angel of History