Special Report

The 50 Highest Grossing Film Directors of All Time

15. Sofia Coppola
> Avg. box office to production budget ratio: +$7.56
> Movie with highest ROI: Lost in Translation (2003)
> Avg. IMDb user rating: 7.1/10
> Avg. Tomatometer score: 75.8%

Sofia Coppola became the first American woman to be nominated for a Best Director Oscar, for 2004’s “Lost in Translation,” a film about an intergenerational friendship between characters played by Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. The film registered a 95% Tomatometer score among Rotten Tomatoes critics.

Source: Stephen Lovekin / Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images

14. Chris Columbus
> Avg. box office to production budget ratio: +$7.56
> Movie with highest ROI: Home Alone (1990)
> Avg. IMDb user rating: 7.1/10
> Avg. Tomatometer score: 51.5%

After writing screenplays for adventure films such as “The Goonies,” Columbus directed some of the more successful movies in the last 30-plus years, including several of the Harry Potter franchise, the Home Alone films, and “Mrs. Doubtfire.” Columbus has either written, produced, or directed 13 movies that have earned more than $100 million at the box office.

Source: Courtesy of Miramax

13. Tom McCarthy
> Avg. box office to production budget ratio: +$7.68
> Movie with highest ROI: The Station Agent (2003)
> Avg. IMDb user rating: 7.7/10
> Avg. Tomatometer score: 88%

Tom McCarthy has won some of the highest Tomatometer score averages of any of the bankable directors on the list. HIs film “The Station Agent,” about the friendship of a little person, a chatty vendor, and an unhappy wife, earned plaudits from critics. McCarthy’s status as director to be reckoned with was cemented with “Spotlight,” the story about the Boston Globe’s investigation into Catholic Church sexual molestation coverup of children, which won for Best Picture in 2016.

Source: Michael Loccisano / Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images

12. David Lowery
> Avg. box office to production budget ratio: +$7.78
> Movie with highest ROI: A Ghost Story (2017)
> Avg. IMDb user rating: 6.7/10
> Avg. Tomatometer score: 88.8%

David Lowery’s movies hold an 88.8% average Tomatometer score. Contributing to that high score are “A Ghost Story” and “The Old Man & the Gun,” both of which scored 91% or above on the Tomatometer.

Source: Theo Wargo / Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images

11. Jason Reitman
> Avg. box office to production budget ratio: +$7.98
> Movie with highest ROI: Juno (2007)
> Avg. IMDb user rating: 7.3/10
> Avg. Tomatometer score: 73.3%

The son of noted director Ivan Reitman, the younger Reitman distinguished himself with the coming-of-age comedy “Juno,” which made a star out of Ellen Page. Reitman followed that with the well-received “”Up in the Air.” His more recent work includes “Ghostbusters: Afterlife,” which posted a Rotten Tomatoes audience score of 95%.

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