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List of Famous Theatre Directors

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Updated June 14, 2019 72.7k views 1,413 items

List of famous theatre directors, with photos, bios, and other information when available. Who are the top theatre directors in the world? This includes the most prominent theatre directors, living and dead, both in America and abroad. This list of notable theatre directors is ordered by their level of prominence, and can be sorted for various bits of information, such as where these historic theatre directors were born and what their nationality is. The people on this list are from different countries, but what they all have in common is that they're all renowned theatre directors.

Tyler Perry and Cate Blanchett are a great starting point for your to rank your favorites on this list. Featuring popular Broadway directors, stage directors, foreign theater directors, and more, this list has it all.  

From reputable, prominent, and well known theatre directors to the lesser known theatre directors of today, these are some of the best professionals in the theatre director field. If you want to answer the questions, "Who are the most famous theatre directors ever?" and "What are the names of famous theatre directors?" then you're in the right place. 
Cate Blanchett is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Catherine Elise Blanchett (; born 14 May 1969) is an Australian-American actress and theatre director. She is the recipient of various accolades, including two Academy Awards, three Golden Globe ...more

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Tyler Perry is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Tyler Perry (born Emmitt Perry Jr.; September 13, 1969) is an American actor, playwright, filmmaker, and comedian. In 2011, Forbes listed him as the highest paid man in entertainment, earning ...more

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Al Pacino is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Alfredo James Pacino (born April 25, 1940), known professionally as Al Pacino, is an American actor and filmmaker who has had a career spanning more than five decades. He has received numerous ...more

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Kevin Spacey is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Kevin Spacey Fowler (born July 26, 1959) is an American actor, producer, and singer. Spacey began his career as a stage actor during the 1980s, obtaining supporting roles in film and television. ...more

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Julie Andrews is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Dame Julie Andrews, (born 1 October 1935) is an English actress, singer and author. Andrews, a child actress and singer, appeared in the West End in 1948 and made her Broadway debut in The Boy ...more

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Kathleen Turner is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Mary Kathleen Turner (born June 19, 1954), better known as Kathleen Turner, is an American film and stage actress and director. Known for her distinctive husky voice, Turner has won two Golden ...more

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Alan Rickman is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Alan Sidney Patrick Rickman (21 February 1946 – 14 January 2016) was an English actor and director. Rickman trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and became a member of the ...more

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David Schwimmer is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
David Lawrence Schwimmer (born November 2, 1966) is an American actor, director, activist, and producer. Schwimmer began his acting career performing in school plays at Beverly Hills High ...more

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Orson Welles is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
George Orson Welles (May 6, 1915 – October 10, 1985) was an American actor, director, writer and producer who is remembered for his innovative work in radio, theatre and film. He is considered ...more

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Judi Dench is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Dame Judith Olivia Dench (born 9 December 1934) is an English actress. Dench made her professional debut in 1957 with the Old Vic Company. Over the following few years, she performed in several ...more

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Ethan Hawke is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Ethan Green Hawke (born November 6, 1970) is an American actor, writer, and director. He has been nominated for four Academy Awards and a Tony Award. Hawke has directed three feature films, ...more

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Philip Seymour Hoffman ... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Philip Seymour Hoffman (July 23, 1967 – February 2, 2014) was an American actor, director, and producer. Best known for his distinctive supporting and character roles–typically lowlifes, ...more

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Derek Jacobi is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Sir Derek George Jacobi (; born 22 October 1938) is an English actor and stage director. A "forceful, commanding stage presence", Jacobi has enjoyed a successful stage career, ...more

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Stanley Tucci is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Stanley Tucci (born November 11, 1960) is an American actor, writer, producer, and film director. Involved in acting from a young age, he made his film debut in 1985's Prizzi's Honor, and played ...more

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David Copperfield is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
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Phylicia Rashād is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Phylicia Rashād ( fih-LI-shə rə-SHAHD) (née Ayers-Allen; June 19, 1948) is an American actress, singer and stage director. She is known for her role as Clair Huxtable on the NBC sitcom ...more

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William H. Macy is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
William Hall Macy Jr. (born March 13, 1950) is an American actor and director. His film career has been built on appearances in small, independent films, though he has also appeared in summer ...more

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George C. Scott is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
George Campbell Scott (October 18, 1927 – September 22, 1999) was an American stage and film actor, director and producer. He was best known for his stage work, as well as his portrayal of ...more

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Charles Laughton is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Charles Laughton (1 July 1899 – 15 December 1962) was an English stage and film actor. Laughton was trained in London at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and first appeared professionally on ...more

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Gary Sinise is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Gary Alan Sinise (born March 17, 1955) is an American actor, director, musician, and philanthropist. He is known for his comedic and dramatic roles in his career. Among other awards, he has won ...more

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Burgess Meredith is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Oliver Burgess Meredith (November 16, 1907 – September 9, 1997) was an American actor, director, producer, and writer. Active for more than six decades, Meredith has been called "a ...more

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Elia Kazan is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
Elia Kazan
Elia Kazan (; born Elias Kazantzoglou (Greek: Ηλίας Καζαντζόγλου); September 7, 1909 – September 28, 2003) was a Greek-American director, producer, writer and actor, described by The New York ...more

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José Ferrer is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
José Vicente Ferrer de Otero y Cintrón (January 8, 1912 – January 26, 1992), known as José Ferrer, was a Puerto Rican actor and theatre and film director. He was the first ...more

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Charles Nelson Reilly is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
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Federico García L... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list List of Famous Theatre Directors
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