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The Best Comedy Directors in Film History

Updated March 24, 2021 12.8k votes 1.6k voters 83.3k views120 items

List RulesVote up the directors you think make the funniest comedies.

These titans of comedy are the best comedy directors to ever make side-splitting movies. This list includes film directors that specialize in hilarious slapstick, comedy-dramas, directing their own work, or those who just know how to capture perfect comedic timing. Of all of these gems, who are the top comedy directors in the entire world of film?

This list includes frequent Hollywood collaborators like the Farrelly Brothers (known for Dumb & Dumber and There's Something About Mary, among others) and David Zucker, Jim Abrahams, and Jerry Zucker, responsible for Airplane!, one of the funniest movies of all time. This list of the funniest directors spans the history of the big screen, starting with Charlie Chaplin, who made his first silent movie in 1921.

Vote up the directors with the most successful comedies under their belts or who just make you laugh the most! Then check back in to see if your favorite comedy directors topped the list! You might also enjoy this list of rom-com directors.

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    Mel Brooks

    New York City, New York

    The Producers (1968)
    Blazing Saddles (1974)
    Young Frankenstein (1974)
    Silent Movie (1976)
    History of the World, Pt. 1 (1981)
    Spaceballs (1987)
    Robin Hood: Men in Tights (1993)

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    Harold Ramis

    Chicago, Illinois

    Caddyshack (1980)
    National Lampoon's Vacation (1983)
    Groundhog Day (1993)
    Multiplicity (1996)
    Analyze This (1999)
    Year One (2009)

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    Charlie Chaplin

    Walworth, United Kingdom

    The Tramp (1915)
    The Kid (1921)
    City Lights (1931)
    Modern Times (1936)
    The Great Dictator (1940)

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    88

    John Hughes

    Lansing, Michigan

    Sixteen Candles (1984)
    The Breakfast Club (1985)
    Weird Science (1985)
    Ferris Bueller's Day Off (1986)
    Planes, Trains and Automobiles (1987)
    She's Having a Baby (1988)
    Uncle Buck (1989)
    Curly Sue (1991)

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    Terry Jones

    Colwyn Bay, United Kingdom

    Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)
    Monty Python's Life of Brian (1979)
    Monty Python's The Meaning of Life (1983)
     

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    Coen Brothers

    Minneapolis, MN

    The Ladykillers (2004)
    Burn After Reading (2008)
    A Serious Man (2009)
    Hail, Caesar! (2016)

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    Rob Reiner

    New York City, New York

    This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
    The Princess Bride (1987)
    When Harry Met Sally... (1989)
    Rumor Has It... (2005)
    The Bucket List (2007)

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    Billy Wilder

    Sucha Beskidzka, Poland

    Sabrina (1954)
    The Seven Year Itch (1955)
    Some Like It Hot (1959)
    One, Two, Three (1961)
    Kiss Me, Stupid (1964)

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    John Landis

    Chicago, Illinois

    The Kentucky Fried Movie (1977)
    Animal House (1978)
    The Blues Brothers (1980)
    An American Werewolf in London (1981)
    Trading Places (1983)
    Spies Like Us (1985)
    ¡Three Amigos! (1986)

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    Edgar Wright

    England, Poole

    Shaun of the Dead (2004)
    Hot Fuzz (2007)
    Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
    The World's End (2013)

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    David Zucker

    Milwaukee, Wisconsin

    Airplane! (1980)
    Top Secret! (1984)
    The Naked Gun: From the Files of Police Squad! (1988)
    The Naked Gun 2½: The Smell of Fear (1991)
    BASEketball (1998)
    My Boss's Daughter (2003)
     

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    Terry Gilliam

    Minneapolis, Minnesota

    Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

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    Buster Keaton

    Piqua, Kansas

    Our Hospitality (1923)
    The Three Ages (1923)
    The Navigator (1924)
    Sherlock Jr. (1924)
    Seven Chances (1925)
    Go West (1925)
    Battling Butler (1926)
    The General (1927)
    Steamboat Bill Jr. (1928)

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    Ivan Reitman

    Komárno, Slovakia

    Meatballs (1979)
    Stripes (1981)
    Ghostbusters (1984)
    Twins (1988)
    Ghostbusters II (1989)
    Kindergarten Cop (1990)
    Dave (1993)
    Junior (1994)
    Fathers' Day (1997)
    No Strings Attached (2011)

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    Robert Zemeckis

    Chicago, Illinois

    Back to the Future (1985)
    Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988)
    Back to the Future Part II (1989)
    Back to the Future Part III (1990)
    Death Becomes Her (1992)
    Forrest Gump (1994)

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    Blake Edwards

    Tulsa, Oklahoma

    Breakfast at Tiffany's (1961)
    The Pink Panther (1963)
    The Great Race (1965)
    The Return of the Pink Panther (1975)
    The Pink Panther Strikes Again (1976)
    Revenge of the Pink Panther (1978)
    10 (1979)
    S.O.B. (1981)
    Victor Victoria (1982)
    Trail of the Pink Panther (1982)
    Curse of the Pink Panther (1983)
    That's Life! (1986)
    Son of the Pink Panther (1993)

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    Woody Allen

    New York City, New York

    What's Up, Tiger Lily? (1966)
    Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Sex* (*But Were Afraid to Ask) (1972)
    Annie Hall (1977)
    Manhattan (1979)
    A Midsummer Night's Sex Comedy (1982)
    The Purple Rose of Cairo (1985)
    Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989)
    Husbands and Wives (1992)
    Manhattan Murder Mystery (1993)
    Bullets Over Broadway (1994)
    Mighty Aphrodite (1995)
    Everyone Says I Love You (1996)
    The Curse of the Jade Scorpion (2001)
    Match Point (2005)
    Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008)
    Midnight in Paris (2011)
    To Rome with Love (2012)
    Blue Jasmine (2013)
    Café Society (2016)

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    Frank Oz

    Hereford, England

    The Muppets Take Manhattan (1984)
    Little Shop of Horrors (1986)
    Dirty Rotten Scoundrels (1988)
    What About Bob? (1991)
    Housesitter (1992)
    In & Out (1997)
    Bowfinger (1999)
    The Stepford Wives (2004)
    Death at a Funeral (2007)

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    Mike Judge

    Guayaquil, Ecuador

    Office Space (1999)
    Idiocracy (2006)
    Extract (2009)
     

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    Wes Anderson

    Houston, Texas

    Bottle Rocket (1996)
    Rushmore (1998)
    The Royal Tenenbaums (2001)
    The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou (2004)
    The Darjeeling Limited (2007)
    Fantastic Mr. Fox (2009)
    Moonrise Kingdom (2012)
    The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
    Isle of Dogs (2018)

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    Judd Apatow

    Flushing, New York City

    The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005)
    Knocked Up (2007)
    Funny People (2009)
    This Is 40 (2012)
    Trainwreck (2015)

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    Kevin Smith

    Red Bank, New Jersey

    Clerks (1994)
    Mallrats (1995)
    Chasing Amy (1997)
    Dogma (1999)
    Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001)
    Clerks II (2006)
    Zack and Miri Make a Porno (2008)

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    Penelope Spheeris

    New Orleans, Louisiana

    Wayne's World (1992)
    The Beverly Hillbillies (1993)
    The Little Rascals (1994)
    Black Sheep (1996)
    Senseless (1998)
     

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    Adam McKay

    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

    Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy (2004)
    Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby (2006)
    Step Brothers (2008)
    The Other Guys (2010)
    Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues (2013)

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  • 25

    Dumb and Dumber (1994)
    Kingpin (1996)
    There's Something About Mary (1998)
    Me, Myself & Irene (2000)
    Shallow Hal (2001)
    Stuck on You (2003)
    Fever Pitch (2005)
    The Heartbreak Kid (2007)
    Hall Pass (2011)
    The Three Stooges (2012)
    Dumb and Dumber To (2014)