Famous Italian Directors

Find out more about the greatest Italian Directors, including Federico Fellini, Sergio Leone, Tinto Brass, Paolo Sorrentino and Frank Capra.

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Vote for Your Favourite Italian Directors

 1 Federico Fellini

Federico Fellini.
3
Famous As: Film Director and Scriptwriter
Birthdate: January 20, 1920
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Rimini, Kingdom of Italy
Died: October 31, 1993

Italian film director and screenwriter, Federico Fellini, is regarded as one of the greatest and most influential filmmakers of all time. He was nominated for the Academy Awards 12 times and won four in the category of Best Foreign Language Film. His distinctive style of film-making has inspired generations of directors in both Italy and Hollywood.

 2 Rocco Siffredi

Rocco Siffredi.
4
Famous As: Adult Film Star
Birthdate: May 4, 1964
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ortona, Italy

Rocco Siffredi is an Italian pornographic filmmaker and pornographic actor. Nicknamed the Italian Stallion, Siffredi has appeared in over 1,300 pornographic films. One of the most decorated pornographic actors of all time, Rocco Siffredi has won 72 awards, including 39 AVN Awards, 13 XRCO Awards, seven XBIZ Awards, and six Ninfa Awards.

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 3 Sergio Leone

Sergio Leone.
5
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: January 3, 1929
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: April 30, 1989

 4 Frank Capra

Frank Capra.
3
Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: May 18, 1897
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Bisacquino, Sicily, Italy
Died: September 3, 1991
Frank Capra was a filmmaker and writer responsible for making several American award-winning films of the 1930s and 1940s. After being born into a poor Italian family, Capra went on to become one of Hollywood's most influential directors of the 1930s; his rags-to-riches story continues to inspire many, with historians labeling him the American Dream personified.

 5 Terence Hill

Terence Hill.
3
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: March 29, 1939
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Venice, Italy

 6 Franco Zeffirelli

Franco Zeffirelli.
3
Famous As: Film Director, Producer
Birthdate: February 12, 1923
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Florence, Italy
Died: June 15, 2019

Franco Zeffirelli went from being a budding architect to a director after watching Laurence Olivier’s Henry V. Starting as a costume/set designer, he gradually deviated to making Shakespearean adaptations, earning an Academy Award nomination with Romeo and Juliet. The openly gay filmmaker was later accused of sexual assaulting two actors.

 7 Pier Paolo Pasolini

Pier Paolo Pasolini.
3
Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: March 5, 1922
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Bologna, Kingdom of Italy
Died: November 2, 1975

Noted film director and actor Pier Paolo Pasolini had already gained fame as a poet and author before stepping into the entertainment industry. The openly gay filmmaker was known for his usage of non-professional actors and themes of sexuality. His brutal murder remains to be a controversial topic.

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 8 Francesca Gregorini

Francesca Gregorini.
5
Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: August 7, 1968
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Daughter of Bond girl Barbara Bach, Francesca Gregorini is also an Italian countess through her father. She grew up in Italy, England, and the U.S. The talented filmmaker is known for her dark and surreal characters and her critically acclaimed films such as The Truth About Emanuel.

 9 Edoardo Ponti

Edoardo Ponti
3
Famous As: Director
Birthdate: January 6, 1973
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland

Writer-director Edoardo Ponti, best known for his 2020 production, The Life Ahead, debuted on screen as a child actor, appearing with his mother, Sophia Loren, as her on-screen son in the moviie Aurora. Beginning his career as a writer-director much later, he won multiple awards and nominations with his first feature film Between Strangers.

 10 Bernardo Bertolucci

Bernardo Bertolucci
3
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: March 16, 1941
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Parma, Italy
Died: November 26, 2018

 11 Vittorio De Sica

Vittorio De Sica
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter, Stage actor, Film actor
Birthdate: July 7, 1901
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sora, Lazio
Died: November 13, 1974

 12 Tinto Brass

Tinto Brass
3
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter, Film producer, Film editor, Actor
Birthdate: March 26, 1933
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Milan

 13 Dario Argento

Dario Argento
3
Famous As: Film director, Film producer, Screenwriter, Composer
Birthdate: September 7, 1940
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rome

 14 Roberto Rossellini

Roberto Rossellini
3
Famous As: Film director, Actor, Film producer, Playwright, Screenwriter, Racecar driver
Birthdate: May 8, 1906
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Rome
Died: June 3, 1977

 15 James Darren

James Darren
5
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: June 8, 1936
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

James Darren is an American actor, singer, and television director. He is well-known for his singing abilities; Darren's version of Goodbye Cruel World peaked at number three on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1961. He has also released several albums like This One's from the Heart and Because of You.

 16 Luca Guadagnino

Luca Guadagnino.
3
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: April 12, 1971
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Palermo, Sicily, Italy

Luca Guadagnino is an Italian filmmaker best known for producing and directing the 2017 coming-of-age film Call Me by Your Name, which earned him an Academy Award nomination for Best Picture. Also known for his contribution to the fashion industry, Guadagnino is credited with creating Frenesy, a production company that produces fashion films.

 17 Paolo Sorrentino

Paolo Sorrentino
3
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: May 31, 1970
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Naples, Italy

 18 Michelangelo Antonioni

Michelangelo Antonioni.
5
Famous As: Film Director, Screenwriter, Editor
Birthdate: September 29, 1912
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ferrara, Italy
Died: July 30, 2007

Michelangelo Antonioni was an Italian screenwriter, film director, editor, short story author, and painter. Renowned for making films with striking visual composition and elusive plots, Antonioni's work has influenced art cinema of the subsequent generation. Over the course of his career, Antonioni won many prestigious awards, including an honorary Academy Award, Palme d'Or, the Golden Bear, and the Golden Lion.

 19 Franco Amurri

Franco Amurri.
5
Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: September 12, 1958
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rome

Son of TV writer Antonio Amurri, Italian director Franco Amurri is best known for films such as Da grande and Monkey Trouble. He has previously also served in the Italian Army. He met actor Susan Sarandon on the sets of Tempest and later had a 4-year relationship with her.

 20 Luchino Visconti

Luchino Visconti
2
Famous As: Theatre director, Film director, Screenwriter, Writer
Birthdate: November 2, 1906
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Milan
Died: March 17, 1976

 21 Giancarlo Giannini

Giancarlo Giannini
3
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: August 1, 1942
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: La Spezia, Italy

 22 Stefano Sollima

Stefano Sollima
2
Famous As: Director
Birthdate: May 4, 1966
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

 23 Lucio Fulci

Lucio Fulci
2
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: June 17, 1927
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: March 13, 1996

 24 Giuseppe Tornatore

Giuseppe Tornatore
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter, Film producer, Film editor
Birthdate: May 27, 1956
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bagheria

 25 Gian Maria Volontè

Gian Maria Volontè.
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: April 9, 1933
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Milan, Italy
Died: December 6, 1994

Gian Maria Volontè was an Italian actor whose versatility made him famous all over Europe. Volonté was honored with a Silver Ribbon in 1968. At the 1983 Cannes Film Festival, he was honored with the Best Actor award for his performance in The Death of Mario Ricci. In 1991, he won a Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival.

 26 Ruggero Deodato

Ruggero Deodato
2
Famous As: Film director, Actor, Screenwriter
Birthdate: May 7, 1939
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Potenza

 27 George P. Cosmatos

George P. Cosmatos
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter
Birthdate: January 4, 1941
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Florence
Died: April 19, 2005

 28 Mario Bava

Mario Bava
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter, Cinematographer, Writer, Responsible for special effects
Birthdate: July 31, 1914
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Sanremo
Died: April 25, 1980

 29 Lina Wertmüller

Lina Wertmüller
2
Famous As: Screenwriter
Birthdate: August 14, 1928
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

 30 Adolfo Celi

Adolfo Celi
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: July 27, 1922
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Messina, Italy
Died: February 19, 1986

 31 Michele Placido

Michele Placido
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: May 19, 1946
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Ascoli Satriano, Italy

 32 Sergio Corbucci

Sergio Corbucci
2
Famous As: film director, screenwriter, film producer
Birthdate: December 6, 1926
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rome
Died: December 2, 1990

 33 Ferdinando Cito Filomarino

Ferdinando Cito Filomarino
2
Famous As: Director
Birthdate: November 27, 1986
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Milan, Italy

 34 Massimo Troisi

Massimo Troisi
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: February 19, 1953
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: San Giorgio a Cremano, Italy
Died: June 4, 1994

 35 Gabriele Muccino

Gabriele Muccino
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter
Birthdate: May 20, 1967
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Rome

 36 Toni Servillo

Toni Servillo
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: January 25, 1959
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Afragola, Italy

 37 Mario Salieri

Mario Salieri
2
Famous As: Film producer, Film director
Birthdate: November 29, 1957
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Naples

 38 Matteo Garrone

Matteo Garrone
2
Famous As: Film director, Screenwriter
Birthdate: October 15, 1968
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Rome

 39 Ugo Tognazzi

Ugo Tognazzi
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: March 23, 1922
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Cremona, Italy
Died: October 27, 1990

 40 Gigi Proietti

Gigi Proietti
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: November 2, 1940
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: November 2, 2020

Gigi Proietti was an Italian actor, comedian, musician, and singer. He loved to sing from an early age and performed in nightclubs as a young man. He attended the University Theater Center and began his career as a theater actor. He soon branched out into movies as well and appeared in hit films like The Appointment and The Wedding. 

 41 Nanni Moretti

Nanni Moretti
2
Famous As: Director
Birthdate: August 19, 1953
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Bruneck, Italy

 42 Gillo Pontecorvo

Gillo Pontecorvo.
1
Famous As: Film Director
Birthdate: November 19, 1919
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Pisa, Italy
Died: October 12, 2006

Italian filmmaker Gillo Pontecorvo, best known for his Golden Lion-winning The Battle of Algiers, had migrated to France to escape the fascism in his country. He initially studied chemistry and also worked as a journalist and a tennis coach, before venturing into filmmaking. He often cast non-professional actors.

 43 Ginevra Elkann

Ginevra Elkann
2
Famous As: Film director, Producer
Birthdate: September 24, 1979
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: London, England

 44 Anna Maria Tatò

Anna Maria Tatò
2
Famous As: Film director
Birthdate: April 19, 1949
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Barletta, Italy

 45 Andrea Di Stefano

Andrea Di Stefano
2
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: December 15, 1972
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

 46 Curzio Malaparte

Curzio Malaparte
1
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: June 9, 1898
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Prato, Italy
Died: July 19, 1957

Curzio Malaparte was an Italian writer, diplomat, war correspondent, and filmmaker. Many of his works, such as La pelle were adapted into films. In 1926, he co-founded an Italian magazine called 900, which played a major role in the rise of Italian fascism. Curzio Malaparte also served as a co-editor and editor of Fiera Letteraria and La Stampa respectively.

 47 Kim Rossi Stuart

Kim Rossi Stuart
1
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: October 31, 1969
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

 48 Christian De Sica

Christian De Sica
1
Famous As: Actor
Birthdate: January 5, 1951
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Rome , Italy

 49 Antonio Margheriti

Antonio Margheriti
1
Famous As: Filmmaker
Birthdate: September 19, 1930
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Rome, Italy
Died: November 4, 2002

 50 Walter Veltroni

Walter Veltroni
1
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: July 3, 1955
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Rome, Italy

Walter Veltroni is an Italian journalist and politician. Interested in politics from a young age, he joined the Italian Communist Youth Federation (FGCI) as a teenager. He pursued a career as a journalist while simultaneously staying involved in politics. He went on to serve as the first leader of the Democratic Party within the center-left opposition.