Behind the Director’s Console: 10 Fresh Movies Made by Actors

The profession of an actor has always been considered dependent – will the directors offer the role, will they approve it after the audition? But not all Hollywood stars are ready to sit in the waiting room, and if finances and abilities allow, they themselves make films at their own discretion. The main role, as a rule, is given to themselves, or to those who they want to see on the set. And the output sometimes turns out to be interesting films, treated kindly by the audience and film critics.

Midnight Sky (2020)

The fantastic thriller was directed by George Clooney, who played one of the main roles in the film with a post-apocalyptic plot . The Hollywood handsome man took the project seriously, so some scenes were filmed in the real conditions of Iceland, where a blizzard was raging. No more than a minute was allocated for one take, since the actors had to warm their faces with a hairdryer – in the cold with a temperature of -40 °, the eyelashes instantly froze.

What do you think, is it worth filming a sequel, and what should be in it?

Original title:  
The Midnight Sky

Genre:  
Fiction, fantasy, thriller, drama

Actors:  
George Clooney, Felicity Jones, David Oyelowo …

Country:  
USA

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 5.7, IMDb – 5.6

Age restrictions:  
12+


Beats (2020)

The beautiful and ageless Halle Berry demonstrated in the sports drama not only directorial talent, but also excellent physical shape. Initially, Nick Cassavetes was supposed to work on the film, and Blake Lively claimed the lead role. When the actress refused to participate, Holly decided to play an MMA fighter and started looking for a director. After several interviews, Berry had to take the project into his own hands, so the film became the debut work of the star.

Original title:
Bruised

Genre:
Drama, sports

Actors:
Shamir Anderson, Halle Berry, Shila Atim …

Country:
UK, USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.0, IMDb – 6.2

Age restrictions:
18+


Education (2019)

The comedy-drama from Olivia Wilde was warmly received by critics , although the film received an R rating due to indecent language and scenes. The director was not upset, because the girls in the frame were able to freely communicate and joke like ordinary teenagers . Olivia put forward the condition that the performers of the main roles should live together for some time before filming. This helped the young actresses to get closer and look like real friends on the screen.

Original title:  
Booksmart

Genre:  
Comedy

Actors:  
Caitlin Deaver, Beanie Feldstein, Jessica Williams…

Country:  
USA

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 6.5, IMDb – 7.2

Age Limits
16+


A Quiet Place (dulogy, 2018 and 2020)

The star of the series “The Office” actor and director John Krasinski was incredibly happy when his wife Emily Blunt agreed to take part in the filming of the horror film. The married couple looked harmoniously on the screen, understanding each other perfectly. For the role of the deaf daughter, John chose the young actress Millicent Simmonds, who lost her hearing in infancy due to an overdose of a medication.

Original title:  
A Quiet Place

Genre:  
Horror, fantasy, drama

Actors:  
Emily Blunt, John Krasinski, Milly Simmonds…

Country:  
USA

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 6.7, IMDb – 7.5

Age restrictions:  
16+


Drug Courier (2018)

The crime drama , directed by Clint Eastwood , is based on a real- life case in which the oldest drug smuggler was arrested in 2011 . 90-year-old Leo Sharp went through World War II , and in old age, due to financial difficulties, was forced to turn into a slippery slope. To get atmospheric and believable footage for this kind of road movie about a veteran drug runner, the film crew filmed Eastwood driving a car for 3 days.

Original title:  
The Mule

Genre:
Thriller, drama, crime

Actors:  
Clint Eastwood, Bradley Cooper, Laurence Fishburne, Michael Peña…

Country:  
USA, Canada

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 7.2, IMDb – 7.0

Age restrictions:  
18+


For Conscience (2016)

To direct the story of Desmond Doss, the brilliant Mel Gibson returned to the director’s chair after a 10-year break associated with a scandalous arrest. The actor was detained by the police for drunk driving and speeding. Gibson’s return turned out to be enchanting, as viewers and critics were not left indifferent to the exciting military drama about a conscious draftsman. At the Venice Film Festival, the audience began to applaud as the credits rolled on the screen, and the applause continued for 10 minutes.

Original title:  
Hacksaw Ridge

Genre:  
Drama, military

Actors:  
Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Teresa Palmer…

Country:  
Australia, USA

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 8.0, IMDb – 8.1

Age restrictions:  
16+


A Tale of Love and Darkness (2015)

The directorial debut of Natalie Portman is connected with the homeland of the Hollywood star – the script was based on the biographical book of the Israeli journalist and writer Amos Oz. The actress went to create a drama for 7 years and was pleased with the result. The producers insisted that the cinematic version of the film be broadcast in English, but the Hollywood diva refused. The film was shot in Hebrew, the original language.

Original title:
A Tale of Love and Darkness

Genre:
Drama, melodrama, detective

Actors:
Natalie Portman, Gilad Kahana, Amir Tesler …

Country:
Israel, USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 6.6, IMDb – 6.0

Age restrictions:
12+


Unbroken (2014)

Angelina Jolie found the story of an American athlete who was captured by the Japanese interesting, so she began to work on a military drama without a doubt. The Hollywood star was unable to attend the premiere of her own brainchild, because at that time she had chickenpox. Real runner Louis Zamperini died six months before the film was released, but managed to watch a rough version, which was kindly provided by Jolie.

Original title:
Unbroken

Genre:
Biography, military, drama

Actors:
Jack O’Connell, Donal Gleason, Miyavi …

Country:
USA

Rating:
Myreleasedate – 7.4, IMDb – 7.2

Age restrictions:
18+


Passion of Don Juan (2013)

Joseph Gordon-Levitt directed a hilarious comedy about the adventures of a womanizer, and wrote the female role specifically for Scarlett Johansson. The actor was happy when the celebrity agreed to the offer to participate in the filming. Initially, Joseph wanted to make the film about the protagonist’s porn addiction more frank, but subsequently some scenes had to be cut due to the NC-17 rating received.

Original title:  
Don Jon

Genre:  
Drama, romance, comedy

Actors:  
Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Scarlett Johansson, Julianne Moore …

Country:  
USA

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 6.1, IMDb – 6.5

Age restrictions:  
16+


Operation Argo (2012)

The film was the third directorial experience of actor Ben Affleck, who played the main role in the film. The script is based on a book based on declassified US intelligence documents . The plot is far from authentic, but Affleck deliberately allowed a distortion of the facts. With a realistic presentation of events, the political thriller would have been a failure at the American box office. On the other hand, the director was able to perfectly convey the atmosphere of the 70s thanks to shooting on Kodak 5263 film. Subsequently, the frames were cut in half and stretched to 200% for the appearance of a characteristic “grain”.

Original title:  
Argo

Genre:  
Thriller, drama

Actors:  
Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin…

Country:  
USA, UK

Rating:  
Myreleasedate – 7.5, IMDb – 7.7

Age restrictions:  
16+


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Jared Lambert/ author of the article

I’ve been writing about movies, TV shows and anime for over 3 years, and you may have seen my reviews on Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic.

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