You'll Be Shocked To Learn These Movies Were Helmed By The Same Directors

You'll Be Shocked To Learn These Movies Were Helmed By The Same Directors

Actors aren't the only talents in the movie biz with range. Plenty of directors have proven versatility in genres, and some projects are so vastly different, that it's hard to believe the same person directed them.

Two men operate an old film camera on a set, with the word "ACTION" in large text below them
Paramount Pictures

Here are 21 movie combinations you won't believe were made by the same director:

1.Happy Feet and Furiosa: A Mad Max Saga

An animated penguin looks down on you
An animated penguin looks down on you
A young woman, dressed in futuristic armor with face paint, stands in a dramatic pose. The background is minimalistic and emphasizes her commanding presence
A young woman, dressed in futuristic armor with face paint, stands in a dramatic pose. The background is minimalistic and emphasizes her commanding presence

Warner Bros. Pictures

Director: George Miller

Happy Feet is an animated jukebox musical comedy about a penguin finding himself through song. Furiosa is a post-apocalyptic action flick that's a prequel to Mad Max: Fury Road.

Miller has had a fascinating directing career with the likes of the original Mad Max series and even the "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" segment in Twilight Zone: The Movie.

2.A Christmas Story and Black Christmas

Child character, Ralphie Parker, from
Child character, Ralphie Parker, from
Olivia Hussey holds a telephone with a concerned expression in a scene from a movie
Olivia Hussey holds a telephone with a concerned expression in a scene from a movie

MGM, Warner Bros. Pictures

Director: Bob Clark

A Christmas Story is a family Christmas comedy about a man reflecting over his memories as a boy and his family's misadventures in the 1940s. Then, there is Black Christmas, which is a horror movie about a killer hiding inside a sorority house.

There's a serious argument to be made that Clark owns the title for both "Best Christmas Movie" and "Best Horror Movie." If you think this combo is weird, wait until I tell you that Clark also directed the raunchy comedy Porky's.

3.Near Dark and The Hurt Locker

A character from the movie
A character from the movie
Jeremy Renner as Sergeant First Class William James talking to another soldier in a scene from
Jeremy Renner as Sergeant First Class William James talking to another soldier in a scene from

De Laurentiis Entertainment Group, Summit Entertainment

Director: Kathryn Bigelow

Before becoming an Academy Award-winning director, Bigelow created Near Dark, a vampire-horror love story between an Oklahoma man and a nomadic vampire. The Hurt Locker is just a little different from the vamp-romance, and it follows the stressful life of a bomb defuser during the second Iraq War.

Both movies have tremendous performances and scenes with unforgettable direction.

4.The Hangover and Joker

Zach Galifianakis holding a baby, Bradley Cooper with a hand on his face, and Ed Helms inspecting tissue, scene from
Zach Galifianakis holding a baby, Bradley Cooper with a hand on his face, and Ed Helms inspecting tissue, scene from
Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker, wearing a red suit and clown makeup, stands in a serious pose against a dark background
Joaquin Phoenix as the Joker, wearing a red suit and clown makeup, stands in a serious pose against a dark background

Warner Bros. Pictures

Director: Todd Phillips

The Hangover is a raunchy comedy about groomsmen who can't remember their bachelor's party, nor find the missing groom. Then you have Joker, a dark thriller and realistic take on the infamous comic book clown prince of crime.

Hollywood has a chance to make the funniest crossover ever — The Joker's Hangover.

5.12 Angry Men and The Wiz

The image shows actors from the classic film
The image shows actors from the classic film
Diana Ross and Michael Jackson in a scene from the movie
Diana Ross and Michael Jackson in a scene from the movie

United Artists, Universal Pictures

Director: Sidney Lumet

In one of the best legal dramas ever made, 12 Angry Men follows the deliberation of jurors who must decide if a teenager should be sent to the chair. The Wiz is the whimsical adaption of the stage musical of the same name.

The way both movies are filmed and blocked are ripe for the stage, which is why Lumet did such a tremendous job.

6.Spy Kids and Sin City

Alexa Vega and Daryl Sabara stand in the foreground indoors, while Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino sit at a table in the background
Alexa Vega and Daryl Sabara stand in the foreground indoors, while Antonio Banderas and Carla Gugino sit at a table in the background
Bruce Willis in a dramatic scene from Sin City
Bruce Willis in a dramatic scene from Sin City

Dimension Films, Miramax Films

Director: Robert Rodriguez

Spy Kids is a family action movie about two kids who follow in their parents' footsteps as spies. Sin City is a neo-noir crime drama based on the always gritty Frank Miller novel.

One has a lot of gore, and the other has giant thumb people.

7.The Princess Bride and Misery

Cary Elwes, with his hand on Robin Wright's head, looks into her eyes while lying on grass, in a scene from
Cary Elwes, with his hand on Robin Wright's head, looks into her eyes while lying on grass, in a scene from
Kathy Bates holds a large knife in a scene from the movie
Kathy Bates holds a large knife in a scene from the movie

20th Century Fox, Columbia Pictures

Director: Rob Reiner

Both are adaptations, but The Princess Bride is an adventure love story, while Misery is a psychological horror thriller.

Reiner uses plenty of closeups that make you feel close to the characters, and he utilizes this for both love and terror.

8.Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind and The Green Hornet

Kate Winslet and Jim Carrey lay on ice, facing up, bundled in coats and gloves in a scene from
Kate Winslet and Jim Carrey lay on ice, facing up, bundled in coats and gloves in a scene from
Two masked figures in dark clothing stand in a grassy area at night, likely from a film or TV show
Two masked figures in dark clothing stand in a grassy area at night, likely from a film or TV show

Focus Features, Sony Pictures Releasing

Director: Michel Gondry

Gondry tore people apart emotionally with his romantic drama Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, and proceeded to do the same with his take on the popular superhero TV series-turned-film The Green Hornet (okay, maybe not quite the same emotional cord).

These are two vastly different styles and stories, and my jaw dropped when I saw Gondry directed both films.

9.How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Frost/Nixon

The Grinch dressed as Santa Claus, wearing a fluffy red suit and hat, looking grumpy
The Grinch dressed as Santa Claus, wearing a fluffy red suit and hat, looking grumpy
A man in a suit and tie sits in a dimly lit room, looking intently towards someone off-camera
A man in a suit and tie sits in a dimly lit room, looking intently towards someone off-camera

Universal Pictures

Director: Ron Howard

Howard brought Whoville to life with his adaptation of the family movie How the Grinch Stole Christmas, but he also proved he has the widest range in Hollywood by making the daring historical drama Frost/Nixon.

Howard has such a deep list of films, but these two might be the furthest from each other. The Grinch may be mean, but he isn't a crook.

10.Thor and Cinderella

Chris Hemsworth as Thor in a scene from the movie. He is wearing his iconic armor with circular designs on the chest
Chris Hemsworth as Thor in a scene from the movie. He is wearing his iconic armor with circular designs on the chest
Lily James is dressed as Cinderella, standing in front of a staircase, wearing a glamorous blue gown with delicate embellishments
Lily James is dressed as Cinderella, standing in front of a staircase, wearing a glamorous blue gown with delicate embellishments

Paramount Pictures, Walt Disney StudiosMotion Pictures

Director: Kenneth Branagh

The "not-yet-MCU" trusted Branagh with the power of Thor, and Disney must have liked his work so much that they trusted him to bring the animated classic Cinderella into live-action.

Branagh has had an unreal acting and directing career, and it's no surprise that he successfully blends stories with emotionally driven characters.

11.The Sound of Music and Star Trek: The Motion Picture

Julie Andrews as Maria sings outdoors while playing guitar in a scene from
Julie Andrews as Maria sings outdoors while playing guitar in a scene from
Spock from
Spock from

20th Century Fox, Paramount Pictures

Director: Robert Wise

I would have, never in a million years, guessed Wise was a "Trekkie," but what a mark to leave on both the sci-fi and musical fan bases. The Sound of Music is an absolute classic musical about the von Trapp family, and Star Trek: The Motion Picture was proof that the TV series could live long and prosper on the big screen.

12.Elf and Iron Man

Will Ferrell as Buddy the Elf smiling widely in a scene from the movie
Will Ferrell as Buddy the Elf smiling widely in a scene from the movie
Iron Man in battle-damaged armor walks away from an explosion in the background
Iron Man in battle-damaged armor walks away from an explosion in the background

New Line Cinema, Paramount Pictures

Director: Jon Favreau

Favreau has dabbled in comedy and action, so it shouldn't be too surprising that he helped launch the MCU with Iron Man AND made the most popular Christmas film of this century, Elf.

He has also helped launch the Star Wars TV experience with The Mandalorian.

13.Avengers: Endgame and You, Me and Dupree

Thanos, wearing battle armor and holding a sword, stands in a battlefield scene from the film Avengers: Endgame
Thanos, wearing battle armor and holding a sword, stands in a battlefield scene from the film Avengers: Endgame
Owen Wilson, wearing a red shirt with a white apron, appears surprised in a scene from a TV or movie
Owen Wilson, wearing a red shirt with a white apron, appears surprised in a scene from a TV or movie

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures, Universal Pictures

Director: Anthony Russo and Joe Russo

That's right, the Russo brothers staged one of the most epic cinematic moments in history while also being behind an Owen Wilson comedy. Go figure.

The big question is: Could Dupree annoy Thanos long enough to distract the Mad Titan in order for an Avenger to remove the infinity gauntlet?

14.12 Years a Slave and Widows

Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from 12 Years a Slave, wearing a worn white shirt, looking intently
Chiwetel Ejiofor in a scene from 12 Years a Slave, wearing a worn white shirt, looking intently
Viola Davis appears serious, wearing a white suit jacket and a necklace, in a scene. Background is not emphasized
Viola Davis appears serious, wearing a white suit jacket and a necklace, in a scene. Background is not emphasized

Fox Searchlight Pictures, 20th Century Fox

Director: Steve McQueen

12 Years a Slave is a biographical drama about a free Black man kidnapped and sold into slavery. Widows is a heist movie following widowed women looking to score on their late husbands' final job.

The themes are miles apart for McQueen, but prove that directors should be given more opportunities to spread their wings in different genres.

15.Furious 7 and The Conjuring

Vin Diesel is driving a car, looking intently ahead
Vin Diesel is driving a car, looking intently ahead
A woman, seen in a profile shot, appears to be screaming or yelling in a dimly lit room
A woman, seen in a profile shot, appears to be screaming or yelling in a dimly lit room

Universal Pictures, Warner Bros. Pictures

Director: James Wan

Wan has made some incredible horror over the years, but The Conjuring is arguably the best of the 2010s. He also got in the driver's seat for the seventh installment of the high-speed action franchise, Fast & Furious.

Wan also directed Aquaman, so he's not afraid to add his horror weirdness into other genres.

16.Mouse Hunt and The Ring

A close-up of a character from a TV show or movie with a white-powdered face and a somber expression
A close-up of a character from a TV show or movie with a white-powdered face and a somber expression
A scene from the horror movie
A scene from the horror movie

DreamWorks Pictures

Director: Gore Verbinski

So, DreamWorks decided: You know who should adapt the terrifying Ringu into an American film? The guy who brought audiences the dark family comedy Mouse Hunt.

Another great spinoff would be a movie about Nathan Lane trying to survive and outwit Samara in the darkest of comedies.

17.Monty Python and the Holy Grail and 12 Monkeys

A scene with King Arthur, portrayed by Graham Chapman, wearing a chainmail headpiece, from the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail
A scene with King Arthur, portrayed by Graham Chapman, wearing a chainmail headpiece, from the film Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Bruce Willis in a scene from a movie, wearing a white robe and looking upwards while leaning against a window
Bruce Willis in a scene from a movie, wearing a white robe and looking upwards while leaning against a window

EMI Films, Universal Pictures

Director: Terry Gilliam

The British comedy Monty Python and the Holy Grail is satire at its peak, but Gilliam also directed the popular sci-fi thriller 12 Monkeys.

You may have thought Gilliam couldn't handle anything outside of British comedy. 'Tis but a scratch...of his potential.

18.Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back and RoboCop 2

Darth Vader, dressed in his iconic black armor and cape with a mechanical chest panel, stands in a sci-fi setting
Darth Vader, dressed in his iconic black armor and cape with a mechanical chest panel, stands in a sci-fi setting
Robocop, a character in futuristic armor, aims a gun forward in a smoky environment
Robocop, a character in futuristic armor, aims a gun forward in a smoky environment

20th Century Fox, Orion Pictures

Director: Irvin Kershner

Kershner helmed two sequels to popular franchises, one being The Empire Strikes Back as the sequel to the groundbreaking Star Wars, and the other being the sequel to the sci-fi crime action movie RoboCop.

Kershner made one of the greatest films of all time, and RoboCop 2.

19.Super Size Me and One Direction: This Is Us

Morgan Spurlock stands shirtless on a scale, getting weighed by a person on the right, while another person looks on from the left
Morgan Spurlock stands shirtless on a scale, getting weighed by a person on the right, while another person looks on from the left
Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson, Harry Styles, and Liam Payne stand together on stage before a large, cheering crowd
Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, Louis Tomlinson, Harry Styles, and Liam Payne stand together on stage before a large, cheering crowd

Samuel Goldwyn Films, TriStar Pictures

Director: Morgan Spurlock

Super Size Me is a documentary following Spurlock as he tries to document the effects of eating McDonald's for every meal. Spurlock also directed the documentary One Direction: This Is Us, which followed the lives of the popular boy group.

I can't imagine another documentary-director combination existing. RIP Mr. Spurlock!

20.Lastly, The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street

Lego character Emmet from
Lego character Emmet from
Jonah Hill in a humorous scene, sticking out his tongue and looking to the side, from a school setting in a movie
Jonah Hill in a humorous scene, sticking out his tongue and looking to the side, from a school setting in a movie

Warner Bros. Pictures, Columbia Pictures

Director: Phil Lord and Christopher Miller

The Lego Movie is an animated family comedy about a Lego's journey to find himself, whereas 21 Jump Street is an action comedy about two undercover cops on a journey to find a drug dealer on a high school campus.

Lord and Miller have comedy down, but I never would have guessed these two films were helmed by the same hilarious minds.

Is there a director that you were stunned to learn made two very different films? Call them out in the comment section below!