Women who are accomplished movie directorsFemale movie directors have made an indelible mark on the film industry, bringingto life some of Hollywoods most successful and beloved motion pictures.When Kathryn Bigelow captured the Academy Award for Best Director for "TheHurt Locker," she became the first woman in the history of the Oscars to win thehonor. "The Hurt Locker," which was released in the United States in 2009 afterpremiering in Italy in 2008, also won the Oscar for Best Picture. It portrays thetense and dangerous daily lives of a military bomb disposal unit working in the warin Iraq. Bigelow earned worldwide acclaim not only for directing such acompelling war movie, but also for adeptly handling a subject that had traditionallybeen the domain of male directors. It was the finest achievement of an illustriouscareer for Bigelow, who had previously directed major action movies such as"Blue Steel" starring Jamie Lee Curtis, "Point Break" with Keanu Reeves andPatrick Swayze and "K-19: The Widowmaker" with Harrison Ford and LiamNeeson.Nancy Meyers has directed a string of hit movies beginning with the 1998 remakeof "The Parent Trap," a family comedy that starred a young Lindsay Lohan.Meyers followed up her directorial debut with the romantic comedies "WhatWomen Want," starring Mel Gibson and Helen Hunt, "Somethings Gotta Give,"with Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton and "Its Complicated," starring MerylStreep.Nora Ephron has also directed a number of smash hits in the romantic comedygenre, including "Sleepless in Seattle" in 1993 and "Youve Got Mail" in 1998, twoof the most iconic romantic comedies in Hollywood history. Both movies starredTom Hanks and Meg Ryan as the romantic leads. Ephron had another triumph in2009 as the director of "Julie & Julia," in which Meryl Streep portrayed JuliaChild.The daughter of famed director Francis Ford Coppola ("The Godfather,""Apocalypse Now"), Sofia Coppola made her first big splash as a Hollywooddirector with "The Virgin Suicides" in 1999. Based on a novel by JeffreyEugenides, the film explores the circumstances surrounding the suicides of fivesisters in an upscale suburban area in Michigan. Coppolas next directing effort was"Lost in Translation," released in 2003, for which she earned a Best Directornomination at the Academy Awards. The film chronicles a relationship between anaging movie star, played by Bill Murray, and a young woman, played by Scarlett
Johansson, after they meet by chance in Tokyo hotel. Coppola won the Oscar forBest Original Screenplay for "Lost in Translation," which was also nominated forBest Picture. Coppola earned more raves for her 2010 film "Somewhere," whichwas set primarily at the Chateau Marmont in Hollywood.A native of New Zealand, Jane Campion became the second woman to receive anomination for Best Director at the Academy Awards for the 1993 drama "ThePiano." The first was Lina Wertmuller for the 1976 film "Seven Beauties." StarringHolly Hunter and Harvey Keitel, "The Piano" tells the story of a mute pianist in19th century New Zealand. Critics praised the film for its emotionally evocativethemes and aesthetic beauty. Campion also achieved success as the director ofmovies such as "The Portrait of a Lady," a 1996 adaptation of the Henry Jamesnovel, and "In the Cut," an erotic thriller from 2003 starring Meg Ryan.As the director of the vampire-romance blockbuster "Twilight," which has earnedmore than $400 million in box office receipts worldwide, Catherine Hardwickeearned the title of the most commercially successful female director in the filmbusiness. Hardwicke had earlier successes with "Thirteen" and "Lords ofDogtown."Nicole Holofcener burst upon the Hollywood scene in 1996 as the director of"Walking and Talking," a small but critically acclaimed romance picture. Shefollowed up with strong directing performances at the helm of "Lovely &Amazing" (2001) and "Friends With Money" (2006). Holofceners 2010 feature"Please Give" won the Robert Altman Award at the Independent Spirit Awards.With a rich background in theater and opera, Julie Taymor made her first splash inHollywood by directing "Titus" (1999) and "Frida" (2002), a pair of stylish andartistic movies. She earned high praise for her directorial effort in "Across theUniverse" (2007), which vividly explored the Vietnam War era through the musicof the Beatles.One of Hollywoods most talented comedic female directors, Amy Heckerlingmade her debut in 1982 with "Fast Times at Ridgemont High." Heckerling also hadtremendous success as the director of "Look Whos Talking" (1989) and "Clueless"(1995).