Successful Filmmakers in Hollywood List

Successful Filmmakers in Hollywood Boards

Ideally, have you ever wondered about the most anticipated and Successful Filmmakers in Hollywood. And if so, which one do you think will top our all-time list? Why?

Yes! Of course, I know these among others are some of the FAQs you’ll like some Answers to. Well, warm your seat and have a cup of tea as we embark on this research work together.

With this in mind, therefore, how do we arrive at our answer to the Top & Successful Filmmakers? Having been vetted and listed in Hollywood Films. Relax, for your information, there is a body that regulates all that. And it’s none other than the Producers Guild of America (PGA).

What is the Role of the Producer Guild of America (PGA)

Simply put, The Producers Guild of America is a non-profit trade organization. In general, that represents, protects and promotes the interests of all members of the producing team. Whether in film, television and news media.

Further, the Producers Guild of America works to protect the careers of producers and improve the producing community at large. Especially by;

  • facilitating health benefits for members,
  • encouraging the enforcement of workplace labor laws and sustainable practices,
  • creating fair and impartial standards for the awarding of producing credits,
  • and hosting educational opportunities for new and experienced producers alike.

It is therefore of importance if you’ll learn more about the Producers Guild of America.

What does a Successful Filmmaker mean?

In other words, what does a producer do, exactly? More to the point, why are there so many different types of producers in film, TV, and video production? Do you know the difference between a producer versus an executive producer? How about a co-producer, associate producer, or TV producer?

Some of the distinctions won’t be cut-and-dry, but understanding who’s usually in charge of what is crucial for any TV and film professionals. 

Successful Filmmakers Guide
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Here, we give you a complete guide to all types of producers and what they do.

Let’s get started.

Black Hollywood Successful Filmmakers Category

But, before that; now that we talk of Blacks and Whites, sorry to say, who makes it tall on the Black Community in Hollywood. Well, according to the Producers Guild of America and whom among the roles cited above also engaged in;

Other criteria for the selection vetting include;

  • individuals had to have produced five or more films;
  • at least three of those titles had to have generated at least $50 million at the box office
  • and rank among the top 100 highest grossing films during the year of their theatrical release.

By Hollywood standards, a film’s worth is based on its box office returns. So, the top 10 are ranked by lifetime cumulative gross box office receipts worldwide.

Examples of Black segment Successful Filmmakers 

1. Rainforest Successful Filmmakers

For example: “Think Like a Man” was a breakout hit in 2012. It recorded $96.1 million in box office receipts worldwide on a production budget of $12 million. In fact, it was No. 1 at the box office for two weekends–a sweet spot for a film with a predominantly African American cast and produced by African American power brokers Will Packer and Rob Hardy of Rainforest Films.

Regardless of that recent box office triumph, getting a film produced and distributed is difficult. The harsh reality is no one African American has the power to green-light a film.

Another somber truth is that African American filmmakers face smaller production budgets, receiving around $10 million to $12 million whereas the average cost of a major movie studio film is more than $90 million.

2. Lionsgate Successful Filmmakers

Even entertainment powerhouse Tyler Perry still needs the go-ahead from Lionsgate to get his next movie made, although his films are a bankable $50 million-plus on average, says Darrell D. Miller, a partner at Fox Rothschild L.L.P. and chair of the Entertainment Law Department.

Still, Perry arguably has the most leverage of anyone writer-director-producer can muster in Hollywood, says Miller. And a number of other African Americans filmmakers are getting projects made with the stamp of approval from Hollywood executives and are generating box office hits often through movies that have crossover appeal and translate well for international markets.

Examples of White segment Successful Filmmakers

In the first place, what would the world be like without movies? Well, the quick answer would be a lot less entertaining. Movies make us laugh, cry, jump with joy and grab the nearest pillow in fear.

The production companies fund the making of movies and offer the resources and manpower required to make it all possible.

In reality, it is exciting to look back over the past hundred years and look at the great films. Particularly, those that have been produced by some of the most influential and successful filmmakers and production companies in the world. 

Before we take a sneak, let’s consider the likes of;

1. Michael Bay

Surprisingly, Michael Bay is known for directing and producing big-budget, high-concept action films. Characterized by fast cutting, stylistic visuals and extensive use of special effects. Including frequent depictions of explosions.

The films he has produced and directed, which include Armageddon (1998), Pearl Harbor (2001) and the Transformers film series (2007–present), have grossed over US$7.8 billion worldwide. Making him one of the most commercially successful directors in history. Learn more about Michael Bay.

2. James Cameron

For sure, James Cameron is a Canadian filmmaker, environmentalist, deep-sea explorer, and philanthropist who lives in New Zealand and the United States. After working in special effects, he found major success since directing and writing the science fiction action film The Terminator (1984).

He then became a popular Hollywood director and was hired to write and direct Aliens (1986); three years later he followed up with The Abyss (1989). He found further critical acclaim for his use of special effects in Terminator 2: Judgment Day (1991).  More about James Cameron.

Major Production Studios with Successful Filmmakers

As a matter of fact, the following list has five major production companies. As well as five minor ones that have reshaped the film industry forever.

Moreover, the rankings are based on research as well as personal opinions. Particularly, over which have had the largest impact over the years. And which has offered the best library of movies including;

1. Warner Bros

Warner Bros. Entertainment was founded in 1923 and has created some of the best movies which have innovated the industry, such as The Jazz Singer introducing synchronized sound. The studio is owned by Time Warner.

Warner Bros. also owns other divisions and subsidiaries such as:

  • New Line Cinema
  • Castle Rock Entertainment
  • Turner Entertainment
  • Warner Bros. Animation
  • DC Films

Warner Bros. is an unstoppable production company that has not only created some great movies but also some great film franchises. Among these are Harry PotterThe Matrix and Batman.

2. Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group

Sony Pictures Motion Picture Group is a division of Sony Entertainment, a part of the larger Sony conglomerate. The studio’s largest subsidiary is Columbia Pictures, which was acquired in 1989 from Coca-Cola for $3.4 billion.

Their other divisions include:

  • TriStar Pictures
  • Screen Gems
  • Sony Pictures Classics
  • Sony Pictures Animation
  • Destination Films
  • Affirm Films

Sony is considered to have the biggest studio today, which begs the question of why they weren’t chosen for the number one spot. In my opinion, they are not the best production company, at least not out of this list.

However, they have produced some great movies over the years as well as some franchises like Spider-ManMen in Black and Resident Evil.

Their biggest asset may very well be Columbia Pictures, which has been producing movies since 1924. Sony certainly has the power to change any industry they enter into and the film industry is no exception.

3. Walt Disney Studios

Walt Disney Studios is the entertainment unit of The Walt Disney Company. The studio has produced some great movies over the years that have impacted many peoples lives, especially younger audiences.

Walt Disney Animation Studios is a division that creates animated feature films and shorts. A few of the great movies they have produced are Snow White and the Seven DwarfsPeter Pan and Frozen.

Walt Disney Pictures

Most of its live-action productions are done under its major studio subsidiary Walt Disney Pictures. Their films include Pirates of the CaribbeanBeauty and the Beast and The Jungle Book.

In the 1980s, the collection of film units in the studio made them become one of Hollywood’s Big Six movie studios. This was largely due to the library produced by Touchstone Pictures as well as the clever marketing used by Walt Disney Studios.

Walt Disney Studios also owns these other subsidiaries and divisions:

  • Lucas Film
  • Marvel Studios
  • Pixar
  • Disneynature

Walt Disney Studios are only improving in their abilities to provide the latest and greatest movies. Their great franchises include Pirates of the CaribbeanThe Chronicles of Narnia and The Lion King.

4. Universal Pictures

Universal Pictures is owned by Comcast through its subsidiary NBCUniversal. Founded in 1912, it is the oldest American film studio.

Universal Studios has produced some timeless classics over the years. Their major box office hits include Jurassic ParkE.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and Jaws, which were all directed by Steven Spielberg.

A division of the studio is Universal Animation Studios which creates animated feature films and TV series. Their feature films include The Land Before TimeAn American Tail and Balto.

Illumination Films

Another division is Illumination which was founded in 2007 by Chris Meledandri. The animation studio became a success with Despicable Me, which earned a worldwide gross of $546.1 million. This created a franchise which has generated over $3 billion at the box office.

Other divisions and subsidiaries include:

  • Universal Studios Home Entertainment
  • Dreamworks Animation
  • Focus Features
  • Working Title Films

Universal Studios have not gained their enormous success solely through the help of Steven Spielberg, who has worked extensively with the studio. They have a vast movie library with some successful franchise like The Fast and the FuriousThe Bourne Identity and Hannibal.

5. 20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox is one of the Big Six studios. It was owned by New Corporation from 1984 to 2013. That company split into News Corp and 21st Century Fox, the latter of which currently owns the studio.

The studio was founded in 1935 and became successful and well-known for their musicals and association with Shirley Temple. Their biggest contemporary hit is Avatar, which currently holds the record for a highest grossing film of all time with over $2.7 billion.

Their Franchises and Successful Filmmakers Profile

20th Century Fox has produced some amazing and successful franchises. Among them are Ice Age and X-Men. They also produced the Star Wars films prior to their acquisition by Disney.

Their original animation division, 20th Century Fox Animation, was started in 1994 to compete with Walt Disney Animation Studios. And who at the time was making hugely successful movies like Lion KingAladdin and Beauty, and the Beast.

Their main production unit was Fox Animation Studios

They had some success in 1997 with Anastasia. It was critically acclaimed but was often mistaken for a Disney movie. However, it did make nearly $140 million on a $53 million budget. The studio followed up with Titan A.E. The film made roughly $37 million on a $75 million budget. In total, the film lost the studio $100 million. This led to Fox Animation Studios shutting down in 2000.

Then again, on the flip side, 20th Century Fox has seen much more success from Blue Sky Studios, which they obtained in 1997. The studio focuses on computer animation features such as Ice AgeRobots and Rio.

20th Century Fox also owns these other divisions and subsidiaries;

  • Fox Searchlight Pictures
  • 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment
  • Fox Star Studios
  • Zero Day Fox

In late 2017, The Walt Disney Company announced its plan to purchase 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billion. Pending approval, the deal is expected to be finalized by 2019.

6. Paramount Pictures

At the same time, Paramount Pictures is another member of the Big Six. They are owned by media conglomerate Viacom. Besides, the study was founded in 1912 and they have produced some of the greatest movies ever.

Nonetheless, their most successful movie ever is Titanic, which has gathered a worldwide gross of over $2 billion. Over the years, Paramount Pictures have produced some great movie series such as Mission ImpossibleIndiana Jones and Transformers.

Successful Filmmakers work through Paramount Animation

Among the divisions owned by the studio is Paramount Animation, which was started in 2011 after DreamWorks Animation departed the studio.

The Paramount Animation was announced as a division dedicated to the creation of animated feature films that could compete with the likes of DreamWorks, Walt Disney, and Pixar.

Generally, the Paramount Pictures also owns other divisions such as:

  • the Paramount Home Media Distribution
  • Paramount Famous Productions
  • Nickelodeon Movies
  • MTV Films

7. Lionsgate Films

Remarkably, the Lionsgate Films is the most commercially successful mini-major movie and television distribution company in North America as well as the seventh most profitable movie studio.

Lionsgate has its origins go back to 1962 with the founding of Cinépix in Montreal. They would be purchased by the Lion Gate Entertainment Group in 1997 to form the studio as it is known today.

They have succeeded through the help of other studios they have acquired such as Trimark Pictures, Vestron Pictures, and Artisan Entertainment.

Movies by Lionsgate Successful Filmmakers 

Lionsgate has helped produce some great movies series like Kick-AssThe Expendables, and The Hunger Games. There is no telling where Lionsgate will be in the future but I would imagine if they keep up with their smart investments they may soon make the transition to becoming a major studio. All they need is time!

Among the subsidiaries owned by the studio is Summit Entertainment, which is possibly their most successful subsidiary at the moment having produced fairly recent hits like TwilightKnowing and Now You See Me.

Lionsgate also owns other divisions and subsidiaries which include:

  • Lionsgate Premiere
  • Roadside Attractions
  • Pantelion Films
  • Codeblack Films

8. The Weinstein Company

The Weinstein Company was formed by brothers Harvey and Bob Weinstein in 2005. It was formed after they left Miramax, which they formed in 1979.

This studio was at one point the largest mini-major studio in Hollywood. Their successful films included DerailedScream 4 and 1408. They quickly gained a reputation for churning out quality films that became profitable. Their highest grossing film is Django Unchained, which received over $425 million at the box office in worldwide gross.

Their Successful Filmmakers also affiliates to Dimension Films

Equally important, the studio owns Dimension Films, which was bought from Disney who owned Miramax. Likewise, they have produced some great sequels to some older movies from the label such as Scary Movie 4 and 5Scream 4 and Spy Kids: All the Time in the World.

Even though, the studio entered into some turmoil with the sexual abuse allegations toward Harvey Weinstein in late 2017. Otherwise, he was fired from the company and the studio declared bankruptcy on March 19, 2018. The private equity firm Lantern Capital won the assets of the studio in an auction.

9. Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios (aka Metro Goldwyn Mayer, Metro Goldwyn Pictures and MGM) is an American media company which primarily produces movies and television programs.

Above all, they were founded in 1924 and were the largest and most revered studio at the time. They were bought and sold multiple times over the years until they filed for bankruptcy in 2010. They recovered but are now considered a mini-major studio.

Classic films by Successful Filmmakers from MGM Studios

To say nothing of, MGM has produced some timeless classics over the years such as Ben-HurThe Dirty Dozen and GoldenEye. Moreover, there is no doubt that a lot of MGM’s success came in the later years through the ownership of the James Bond series.

However, their future success or failure will depend on the box office success of their films. Time will tell if they can regain their status as a major studio.

10. DreamWorks Pictures

In the same way, DreamWorks Pictures is a movie studio owned by Amblin Partners. It was founded in 1994 by Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg, and David Geffen.

As an example, some of their best films include Saving Private RyanGladiator, and Transformers. Again, the studio was doing well around the turn of the millennium. In that case, by winning three Academy Awards for Best Picture and having box office grosses of over $100 million. However, a debt of over $400 million led to the sale to Viacom in 2005.

DreamWorks Animation

As can be seen, one of their biggest and most successful divisions was DreamWorks Animation. It brought huge financial success with movies such as AntzThe Prince of EgyptChicken Run and Shrek. The division was spun off in 2004 and is currently owned by NBCUniversal.

Finally, below is a playlist of mixed Movies, Films and TV Series from your favorite and successful filmmakers of all time.

Resourceful References;

  1. The jmexclusives Online Team: Recent Blog and News Update
  2. Reel Run Down: The Top 10 Movie Production Companies of All Time
  3. Black Enterprise: 10 of the Most Successful Black Producers

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