A man-eating shark. A friendly alien. An adventurous archeologist. A ragtag WWII platoon. A heroic German businessman in the Holocaust. The eclectic career of director Steven Spielberg has virtually defined what a blockbuster could be in the past four decades, but he’s also been able to craft more personal films as well.
His 30th directorial achievement, the upcoming Pentagon Papers drama “The Post,” recently won the National Board of Review prizes for Best Picture, Best Actor (Tom Hanks), and Best Actress (Meryl Streep). In recognition of this new movie, we are ranking Spielberg’s entire filmography from worst to best in a new photo gallery above of his 29 prior theatrical features (therefore, not including the TV movie “Duel”).
Spielberg’s reputation as a master entertainer came with the release of “Jaws,” his 1975 shark attack thriller. Made when he was just 29 years old, the film set box office records and made the summer safe for blockbusters again. Such following films as “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” (1977), “Raiders of the Lost Ark” (1981), and “E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial” (1982) cemented Spielberg’s ability to create spectacular amusements that brought in the big bucks.
He later moved into serious filmmaking with “The Color Purple” (1985), which paved the way for his 1993 Holocaust drama “Schindler’s List” (1993). That film swept the Academy Awards, bringing Spielberg Oscars for Best Director and Best Picture. He added another trophy to his shelf for helming the World War II epic “Saving Private Ryan” (1998).
Additionally, Spielberg competed at the Oscars for directing “Close Encounters,” “Raiders,” “E.T.,” “Munich” (2005), and “Lincoln,” while “Jaws,” “Raiders,” “E.T.,” “The Color Purple,” “Private Ryan,” “Munich,” War Horse,” “Lincoln,” and “Bridge of Spies” (2015) all contended for Best Picture. Should he win Best Director for “The Post,” he’ll join Frank Capra and William Wyler as the only three-time victors in the category (John Ford holds the record with four).
Be sure to make your Oscar nomination predictions so that Hollywood studio executives and top name stars can see how their films are faring in our Academy Awards odds. Don’t be afraid to jump in now since you can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on January 23. And join in the fierce debate over the 2018 Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our film forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.