Thursday, October 25, 2012

The rise of directors named Ben

I notice patterns. It's who I am.

Not all the patterns I notice mean anything. But that doesn't mean I won't write about them here.

Like, what's up these days with all the prominent directors named Ben? Or some variation of that spelling?

Earlier this year, Benh Zeitlin took the film world by storm with his memorable feature debut, Beasts of the Southern Wild. A young whippersnapper by industry standards, Zeitlin just turned 32.

But you don't have to be a young Ben (or director Ben Younger) to be making a name for yourself in 2012. Last Friday, one of the most buzzed about movies of the fall, The Sessions, opened. Its director? A 66-year-old Australian named Ben Lewin, who hadn't made a feature since 1994's Paperback Romance.

Meanwhile, one of the most buzzed about movies of the year, period, is Argo, directed by Ben Affleck.

Could the best director race this year feature three Bens? There's an outside possibility that it could.

Unfortunately, that's about as much evidence as I can give you. Though I will have a little bit more when Ben Stiller's The Secret Life of Walter Mitty comes out next year. That one should be interesting. 

Like I said, it's a pattern that doesn't mean anything. Nothing to see here. Move along. Move along.

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