Entertainment The Best Directors Never Nominated for Oscars  

Ranker Film
Originally by
5.1k votes 523 voters 8.5k views 67 items

List Rules Only film directors who have never had an Academy Award nomination FOR DIRECTING.

The life of a movie director can be quite exciting, extremely stressful, and completely unrewarding at times. Since the first Oscars were awarded at a small, private ceremony in 1929, directors in the Western world and beyond have sought validation through those heavy, gold statuettes. However, because only a handful of directors are nominated each year, some of history’s greatest film directors have never been properly acknowledged for their efforts, even though they made movies that we all know and love and deserved to be Academy Award winning movies.

What great directors have never been nominated for a Best Director Oscar? When we think about our favorite movies, we focus on the actors, the set, and the stories. Rarely do we think about people behind the scenes. This list includes some of the best directors of all time, from new favorites like Wes Anderson and Ben Affleck to long-gone classic auteurs like Charlie Chaplin and Fritz Lang - none of whom were ever nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director. Though a few of the people on this list won Oscars in other categories - such as Best Screenplay or even Best Picture - they have never received an "Oscar nod" for Best Directing.

Vote up these most underrated directors who were snubbed by the Academy and who deserve recognition for their work by this distinguished award.
list ordered by
158 56
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City Lights, Modern Times, The Great Dictator
81 23
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Moonrise Kingdom, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Rushmore
130 52
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dca1983 added The Good, the Bad and the Ugly, Once Upon a Time in the West
121 64
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Carrie, Scarface, Dressed to Kill
166 86
Tim Burton is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Directors Never Nominated for Oscars
Edward Scissorhands, Ed Wood, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
67 16
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Abdallah Nabawy added The Dark Knight, The Dark Knight Rises, Batman Begins
109 55
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Brazil, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, 12 Monkeys
89 43
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Trioxin245 added Halloween, The Thing, Escape from New York
121 69
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The Princess Bride, This Is Spinal Tap, Stand by Me
20 1
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daryushshokofo added Seven Servants, Breathful, Asudem
69 46
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The Fly, The Dead Zone, Eastern Promises
81 41
Buster Keaton is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Directors Never Nominated for Oscars
The Three Ages, Seven Chances, Go West
70 38
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Metropolis, M, The Big Heat
65 37
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Trioxin245 added The Silence of the Lambs, Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Dead
86 44
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Trioxin245 added Ferris Bueller's Day Off, The Breakfast Club, Home Alone
49 32
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Trioxin245 added Solaris, Stalker, Andrei Rublev
119 100
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Argo, Gone Baby Gone, The Town
52 36
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The Wild Bunch, Major Dundee, Straw Dogs
33 6
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Young Frankenstein, Blazing Saddles, Spaceballs
25 14
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Alex Farias added The White Ribbon, The Piano Teacher, Funny Games
23 14
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iandmph added Dancer in the Dark, Dogville, Melancholia
44 31
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Frankenstein, The Invisible Man, Show Boat
46 48
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Trioxin245 added The Usual Suspects, X-Men, X-Men: First Class
76 60
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12 Years a Slave, Hunger, Shame
47 51
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Glory, Courage Under Fire, The Last Samurai