Variety has announced its 10 Directors to Watch list, representing up-and-coming helmers whose early work suggests promising careers ahead.
The lineup includes Haifaa Al-Mansour (“Wadjda”), Wayne Blair (“The Sapphires”), John Krokidas (“Kill Your Darlings”), Tobias Lindholm (“A Hijacking”), David Lowery (“Ain’t Them Bodies Saints”), Andres Muschietti (“Mama”), David Ondricek (“In the Shadow”) and Rebecca Thomas (“Electrick Children”), along with two directing duos.
Jon Lucas and Scott Moore, who wrote “The Hangover,” make their helming debut with “21 and Over” this spring, while “Kon-Tiki” directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg represent Norway in the Oscar foreign-language film race. Ondricek’s “In the Shadow” was also submitted for Academy consideration, representing the Czech Republic.
The internationally diverse group ranges from Al-Mansour, Saudi Arabia’s first female director, to Aussie helmer Blair, whose lively look at Aboriginal girl group “The Sapphires” debuted at Cannes. “Mama,” a remake of Argentine director Muschietti’s Spanish short film, was produced by Guillermo del Toro, stars Jessica Chastain. Universal will release the pic on Jan. 18.
Profiles will run in the Jan. 3 Daily Variety.
Several of the directors have spent the year traveling the fest circuit, with at least five screening their work at the Palm Springs Film Festival next month, where Variety hosts its 10 Directors to Watch event on Jan. 6. Later in the month, “Ain’t Them Bodies Saints” and “Kill Your Darlings” will preem in narrative competition at Sundance.