Most directors, even the great ones, tend to stick to a handful of genres. They play to their strengths and keep to the kinds of stories they’re interested in. It’s understandable. However, some of the best movies are the ones made by a filmmaker stepping outside their comfort zone.
With this in mind, Redditors recently got together on r/movies, the largest film subreddit, to discuss which genres they would like to see their favorite filmmakers take on. They came up with a few intriguing director/genre combinations. Some of them are even plausible.
10 Christopher Nolan — Bond Film
One Redditor said they wished Christopher Nolan would direct an espionage film, which makes total sense. His movies already come close to that genre, with their secret agents, advanced technology, and slick action. Plus, his knack for complex storytelling would elevate a Bond film above being simply a series of action sequences. In fact, Nolan revealed recently that he spoke to the Bond producers about potentially directing a 007 film, though things never moved beyond that.
“I have always wished Christopher Nolan would direct a Bond film. He has the style, spy/espionage theme and story that would be great for the Bond world,” said user j0ker76. “It would have been cool to see how he could have added to the world, especially how he tries to ground his movies in reality.”
9 Guillermo del Toro — Medieval Movie
No one blends emotional depth and visually striking horror better than Guillermo del Toro. His films feature some of the most memorable creature designs in decades alongside immersive, fantastical world-building. Thus far, he has mostly explored contemporary settings, with a few films set in the early 20th century and Pacific Rim set in the near future, so it would be fascinating to see him take on a story set in the Middle Ages.
He would probably excel at telling a full-on fantasy story, though a mostly realistic medieval story with a few fantasy elements is more likely. “Would be epic. I finally watched Pan’s Labyrinth, and I could def see him bringing that era to life,” said the user j0ker76.
8 Denis Villeneuve — Horror
Denis Villeneuve is currently at the forefront of sci-fi cinema, with a string of terrific projects that combine thoughtful themes with slick visuals. Blade Runner 2049 was a worthy follow-up to the original, Arrival is one of the smartest films the genre has seen in years, and the first Dune is a true epic with a unique aesthetic.
His movies can be scary — Enemy is the best example — but if he were to truly unleash his talents on the horror genre, the results could be brilliant. “He has such amazing visual movies. Prisoners and Enemy are kinda barking down that [horror] path already…but imagine if he fully committed to the genre,” said Redditor Dash_Jones.
7 Martin Scorsese — Sci-Fi
Martin Scorsese is most famous for his gritty, realistic movies like Goodfellas, Raging Bull, and Mean Streets. However, he has also hinted at surrealism with projects like The King of Comedy, so it could be intriguing to see what a Scorsese sci-fi movie would look like. At the very least, it would be something new for the veteran director and certainly a step outside his comfort zone.
His interest in believable characters would work well in a fantastical setting, helping to keep the story grounded despite an unbelievable premise. “I wonder what kind of sci-fi movie Martin Scorsese would make,” said user Intelligent-Age2786. “Something like maybe Strange Days. Like a sort of cyberpunk sci-fi movie.”
6 Edgar Wright — ‘Fast and Furious’
One Redditor said that Edgar Wright should make a Fast and Furious movie that is not totally outside the realm of possibility. Wright has already made a fast-paced, car-based action movie in Baby Driver. Plus, his talent for humor, action, and highly choreographed and stylized sequences would work well in the Fast and Furious universe.
Some Edgar Wright creativity may be just what the franchise needs, as its most recent entries have become increasingly cheesy and seem to stray from the fundamentals that made the first films so enjoyable. “Now that would be a fun movie,” said Redditor j0ker76.
5 Wes Anderson — Horror
A Wes Anderson horror film would be fascinating because it would be so paradoxical – at least on the surface. Anderson is famous for his sunny, quirky films like The Royal Tenenbaums, Moonrise Kingdom, and The Grand Budapest Hotel, with pastel color palettes, symmetrical compositions, and whimsical set design.
At first glance, it may seem that Anderson’s aesthetic would never work for horror. However, Ari Aster proved with Midsommar that a film can be bright and sunlit and still terrifying. “Imagine the colors, sets, and characters being uncomfortable instead of funny/interesting,” said user Tauntaunmcfly.
4 Quentin Tarantino — Sci-Fi
User /lezboyd hopes that we’ll one day get a “space sci-fi adventure” directed by Quentin Tarantino. Tarantino movies are characterized by non-linear storytelling, an eclectic mix of genres, and stylized violence. This recipe has succeeded across various settings, from the present day to World War II to the Old West. Not to mention, his movies tend to have elements that are slightly fantastical, so it would not be such a huge jump into sci-fi proper.
Tarantino has expressed his affection for many sci-fi movies, particularly Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan. Years ago, QT even approached Paramount with the idea of directing a Star Trek movie. However, the project has not come to fruition yet.
3 Alfonso Cuarón — Superhero Movie
u/Minifig81 wants to see Alfonso Cuarón helm a superhero film. “Not a DC one or a Marvel one in particular, just a superhero movie,” they said. This fits; Cuarón has already made two great sci-fi movies (Children of Men and Gravity) and a fantasy film (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban). He’s proven himself adept at these kinds of stories.
Most of all, though, Cuarón is best at telling stories about complex, believable characters. The best examples are Y tu mamá también and Roma. A superhero movie with this kind of deep characterization could be a masterpiece.
2 Rob Zombie — Terminator Movie
“I want to see Rob Zombie make a Terminator movie and go back to the dark slasher vibes of the original,” said Redditor estine1979. user BusinessPurge joked that it could be called “House of T-1000 Corpses.” Rob Zombie rose to fame as a member of the rock band White Zombie before pivoting to directing in the early 2000s. He made horror movies like The Devil’s Rejects and 2007’s Halloween, as well as last year’s comedy-horror The Munsters.
His work is defined by explicit violence and gore, great use of music, and occasionally controversial content. His dark influence might be exactly what’s needed to reinvigorate the Terminator franchise, which has lost some of its potency in recent years.
1 Robert Eggers — Action
u/Tauntaunmclfy would love to see “Robert Eggers doing a The Raid style action movie.” Eggers proved he can direct action set pieces well with his violent, gorgeous epic The Northman, so he should be able to handle a more action-focused movie set in the present day.
Again though, as with a director like Villeneuve, Eggers values substance as much as style, which is why an Eggers action movie would be so appealing. It wouldn’t just be schlock or terrific fight scenes held together by a flimsy plot. He would bring nuanced characters and a thoughtful story to the genre. His next project is Nosferatu, set for release later this year, but it remains to be seen what he’ll do next.
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