OSCAR HISTORY: Best Director

It is a well known truth of the film industry that movies are a director's medium They are the men and women whose vision steers the entire film, the individuals who block the shots, visualize the entire story, and shape the style that will make the film truly unique. The Academy's Best Directors were the ones who put their solid stamp and style on their films, contributing something memorable and meaningful to the history of cinema.


2019: Bong Joon Ho for PARASITE     (View Acceptance Speech)
2018: Alfonso Cuarón for ROMA     (View Acceptance Speech)
2017: Guillermo Del Toro for THE SHAPE OF WATER     (View Acceptance Speech)
2016: Damien Chazelle for LA LA LAND     (View Acceptance Speech)
2015: Alejandro G. Iñárritu for THE REVENANT     (View Acceptance Speech)
2014: Alejandro G. Iñárritu for BIRDMAN OR (THE UNEXPECTED VIRTUE OF IGNORANCE)     (View Acceptance Speech)
2013: Alfonso Cuarón for GRAVITY     (View Acceptance Speech)
2012: Ang Lee for LIFE OF PI     (View Acceptance Speech)
2011: Michel Hazanavicius for THE ARTIST     (View Acceptance Speech)
2010: Tom Hooper for THE KING'S SPEECH     (View Acceptance Speech)
2009: Kathryn Bigelow for THE HURT LOCKER     (View Acceptance Speech)
2008: Danny Boyle for SLUMDOG MILLIONAIRE     (View Acceptance Speech)
2007: Joel Coen & Ethan Coen for NO COUNTRY FOR OLD MEN     (View Acceptance Speech)
2006: Martin Scorsese for THE DEPARTED     (View Acceptance Speech)
2005: Ang Lee for BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN     (View Acceptance Speech)
2004: Clint Eastwood for MILLION DOLLAR BABY     (View Acceptance Speech)
2003: Peter Jackson for THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING     (View Acceptance Speech)
2002: Roman Polanski for THE PIANIST     (View Film Analysis)
2001: Ron Howard for A BEAUTIFUL MIND     (View Acceptance Speech)
2000: Steven Soderbergh for TRAFFIC     (View Acceptance Speech)
1999: Sam Mendes for AMERICAN BEAUTY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1998: Steven Spielberg for SAVING PRIVATE RYAN     (View Acceptance Speech)
1997: James Cameron for TITANIC     (View Acceptance Speech)
1996: Anthony Minghella for THE ENGLISH PATIENT     (View Acceptance Speech)
1995: Mel Gibson for BRAVEHEART     (View Acceptance Speech)
1994: Robert Zemeckis for FORREST GUMP     (View Acceptance Speech)
1993: Steven Spielberg for SCHINDLER'S LIST     (View Acceptance Speech)
1992: Clint Eastwood for UNFORGIVEN     (View Acceptance Speech)
1991: Jonathan Demme for THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS     (View Acceptance Speech)
1990: Kevin Costner for DANCES WITH WOLVES     (View Acceptance Speech)
1989: Oliver Stone for BORN ON THE FOURTH OF JULY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1988: Barry Levinson for RAIN MAN     (View Acceptance Speech)
1987: Bernardo Bertolucci for THE LAST EMPEROR     (View Acceptance Speech)
1986: Oliver Stone for PLATOON     (View Acceptance Speech)
1985: Sydney Pollack for OUT OF AFRICA     (View Acceptance Speech)
1984: Milos Forman for AMADEUS     (View Acceptance Speech)
1983: James L. Brooks for TERMS OF ENDEARMENT     (View Acceptance Speech)
1982: Richard Attenborough for GANDHI     (View Acceptance Speech)
1981: Warren Beatty in REDS     (View Acceptance Speech)
1980: Robert Redford for ORDINARY PEOPLE     (View Acceptance Speech)
1979: Robert Benton for KRAMER VS. KRAMER     (View Acceptance Speech)
1978: Michael Cimino for THE DEER HUNTER     (View Acceptance Speech)
1977: Woody Allen for ANNIE HALL     (View Interview)
1976: John G. Avildsen for ROCKY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1975: Milos Forman for ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST     (View Acceptance Speech)
1974: Francis Ford Coppola for THE GODFATHER PART II     (View Acceptance Speech)
1973: George Roy Hill for THE STING     (View Acceptance Speech)
1972: Bob Fosse for CABARET     (View Acceptance Speech)
1971: William Friedkin for THE FRENCH CONNECTION     (View Acceptance Speech)
1970: Franklin J. Schaffner for PATTON     (View Acceptance Speech)
1969: John Schlesinger for MIDNIGHT COWBOY     (View Oscar Moment)
1968: Carol Reed for OLIVER!     (View Acceptance Speech)
1967: Mike Nichols for THE GRADUATE     (View Acceptance Speech)
1966: Fred Zinnemann for A MAN FOR ALL SEASONS     (View Acceptance Speech)
1965: Robert Wise for THE SOUND OF MUSIC     (View Oscar Moment)
1964: George Cukor for MY FAIR LADY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1963: Tony Richardson for TOM JONES     (View Oscar Moment)
1962: David Lean for LAWRENCE OF ARABIA     (View Acceptance Speech)
1961: Jerome Robbins and Robert Wise for WEST SIDE STORY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1960: Billy Wilder for THE APARTMENT     (View Acceptance Speech)
1959: William Wyler for BEN-HUR     (View Acceptance Speech)
1958: Vincente Minnelli for GIGI     (View Acceptance Speech)
1957: David Lean for THE BRIDGE ON THE RIVER KWAI     (View Acceptance Speech)
1956: George Stevens for GIANT     (View Acceptance Speech)
1955: Delbert Mann for MARTY     (View Oscar Moment)
1954: Elia Kazan for ON THE WATERFRONT     (View Acceptance Speech)
1953: Fred Zinnemann for FROM HERE TO ETERNITY     (View Acceptance Speech)
1952: John Ford for THE QUIET MAN     (View Oscar Moment)
1951: George Stevens for A PLACE IN THE SUN     (View Acceptance Speech)
1950: Joseph L. Mankiewicz for ALL ABOUT EVE     (View Acceptance Speech)
1949: Joseph L. Mankiewicz for A LETTER TO THREE WIVES     (View Acceptance Speech)
1948: John Huston for THE TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE     (View Acceptance Speech)
1947: Elia Kazan for GENTLEMAN'S AGREEMENT     (View Film Trailer)
1946: William Wyler for THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES     (View Film Trailer)
1945: Billy Wilder for THE LOST WEEKEND     (View Film Trailer)
1944: Leo McCarey for GOING MY WAY     (View Film Trailer)
1943: Michael Curtiz for CASABLANCA     (View Film Clip)
1942: William Wyler for MRS. MINIVER     (View Film Trailer)
1941: John Ford for HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY     (View Film Trailer)
1940: John Ford for THE GRAPES OF WRATH     (View Film Trailer)
1939: Victor Fleming for GONE WITH THE WIND     (View Film Clip)
1938: Frank Capra for YOU CAN'T TAKE IT WITH YOU     (View Film Trailer)
1937: Leo McCarey for THE AWFUL TRUTH     (View Film Clip)
1936: Frank Capra for MR. DEEDS GOES TO TOWN     (View Film Trailer)
1935: John Ford for THE INFORMER     (View Film Trailer)
1934: Frank Capra for IT HAPPENED ONE NIGHT     (View Film Trailer)
1932 / 33: Frank Lloyd for CAVALCADE    
1931 / 32: Frank Borzage for BAD GIRL    
1930 / 31: Norman Taurog for SKIPPY    
1929 / 30: Lewis Milestone for ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT    
1928 / 29: Frank Lloyd for THE DIVINE LADY    
1927 / 28: COMEDY = Lewis Milestone for TWO ARABIAN KNIGHTS, DRAMA = Frank Borzage for 7TH HEAVEN and a special directorial award to Charles Chaplin, for his efforts on THE CIRCUS