Entertainment

The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever 

HoserUSC
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14.4k votes 1.4k voters 19.6k views 77 items

In the movie business there are great actors and great directors; when two of these tremendously talented people come together to make a film, the result is often a classic. When a great actor/director team continues to pair up and make films, the result is a legend. To add to this list, click Info View.

From Scorcese & De Niro to Burton & Depp, there's no denying that certain actor/director teams have a unsaid spark between them (the director able to coax the best performance from the actor and he in turn being able to translate a director's vision into that stellar performance). Point is: there are some truly great director/actor combos out there.

Let's get something straight: this is not a list of all the best directors of all time or the best actors and actresses ever, this is a list of the all-time best actor/director collaborations. These are movie directors who work with the same actors over and over again because of the tremendous results they get. Now bear in mind, there are times when even the top actor/director duos slip up and make a less-than-epic film (*cough*The Terminal*cough*), but on the whole, these creative teams are behind many of the best movies of all time.

If your favorite director/actor team didn't make the list, feel free to add them and let others vote on their effectiveness at delivering great performances together. And before you ask, yes, Steven Spielberg/Harrison Ford and all the other actors/directors who are linked by sequels were intentional omissions. That's not a choice to work together, it's a contract. Now go forth and make your choices for the top actor and director collaborators.
list ordered by
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26
Christopher Nolan / Mich... is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Christopher Nolan / Michael Caine
Batman Begins, The Dark Knight Rises, The Dark Knight, The Prestige
27
John Carpenter / Kurt Ru... is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
John Carpenter / Kurt Russell
The Thing, Big Trouble in Little China, Escape From New York, Escape From L.A
28
Akira Kurosawa / Toshiro... is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Akira Kurosawa / Toshiro Mifune
Seven Samurai, Rashomon, Yojimbo, Throne of Blood, High and Low, The Hidden Fortress
29
Sam Raimi / Bruce Campbe... is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Sam Raimi / Bruce Campbell
Evil Dead, Oz the Great and Powerful, The Evil Dead, Spider-Man, Evil Dead II, Army of Darkness
30
David Fincher / Brad Pit... is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
David Fincher / Brad Pitt
Fight Club, Se7en, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
31
Woody Allen / Diane Keat... is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Woody Allen / Diane Keaton
Annie Hall, Manhattan, Manhattan Murder Mystery, Radio Days, Love and Death, Sleeper, Interiors
32
Brian De Palma / Al Paci... is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
doremifasola added Brian De Palma / Al Pacino
Carlito's Way, Scarface
33
Elia Kazan / Marlon Bran... is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Elia Kazan / Marlon Brando
A Streetcar Named Desire, On the Waterfront, Viva Zapata!
34
Ingmar Bergman / Max Von... is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Ingmar Bergman / Max Von Sydow
The Seventh Seal, Wild Strawberries, The Virgin Spring, Through a Glass Darkly, Winter Light
35
Steven Spielberg / Richa... is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Steven Spielberg / Richard Dreyfuss
Jaws, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Always
36
John Hughes / Molly Ring... is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
John Hughes / Molly Ringwald
The Breakfast club, Sixteen Candles, Pretty In Pink
37
Federico Fellini / Marce... is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Federico Fellini / Marcello Mastroianni
La Dolce Vita, 8 1/2, Ginger and Fred, Fellini's Roma, We All Loved Each Other So Much
38
Brian De Palma / Robert ... is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
doremifasola added Brian De Palma / Robert De Niro
The Untouchables, Greetings, The Wedding Party, Hi Mom
39
Ingmar Bergman / Liv Ull... is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
bsanguin added Ingmar Bergman / Liv Ullmann
Persona, Autumn Sonata, Cries and Whispers, Scenes from a Marriage, Hour of the Wolf
40
The Coen Brothers / John... is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
The Coen Brothers / John Turturro
The Big Lebowski, O Brother, Where Art Thou?, Miller's Crossing, Barton Fink
41
Quentin Tarantino / Chri... is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Quentin Tarantino / Christoph Waltz
Django Unchained, Inglorious Basterds
42
The Coen Brothers / Jeff... is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
The Coen Brothers / Jeff Bridges
The Big Lebowski, True Grit
43
Ridley Scott / Russell C... is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Ridley Scott / Russell Crowe
Gladiator, American Gangster, Body of Lies, A Good Year, Robin Hood
44
The Coen Brothers/Steve ... is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Tom Islava added The Coen Brothers/Steve Buscemi

Miller's Crossing, The Hudsucker Proxy, Barton Fink, Fargo, The Big Lebowski, and Paris, je t'aime'

45
Francois Truffaut / Jean... is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
William Roberts added Francois Truffaut / Jean Pierre Léaud
The 400 Blows, Stolen Kisses, Bed and Board, Two English Girls, Day for Night, Love on the Run, 
46
Pedro Almodóvar /... is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
iandmph added Pedro Almodóvar / Rossy De Palma
47
George Cukor / Katherine... is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
George Cukor / Katherine Hepburn
A Bill of Divorcement, Little Women, Sylvia Scarlett, Holiday, The Philadelphia Story, Keeper of the Flame, Adam’s Rib, and Pat and Mike
48
James Cameron / Bill Pax... is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
James Cameron / Bill Paxton
Titanic, The Terminator, Aliens, True Lies
49
John McTiernan / Bruce W... is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
RonBuck added John McTiernan / Bruce Willis
Die Hard, The Last Boy Scout, Die Hard: With Avengence
50
Woody Allen / Woody Alle... is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Actor / Director Teams Ever
Woody Allen / Woody Allen
Bananas, Annie Hall, Hannah and Her Sisters, Manhattan, Take the Money and Run