The very best directors are those who have achieved success in different visual mediums, and some of Hollywood's finest cut their teeth on music videos for musics' biggest names.
French director Romain Garvas is continuing the proud tradition of the music video to film pipeline with his new Netflix thriller 'Athena', and the director has brought the gritty and frantic style from his work with Kanye West and Justice effortlessly to the silver screen.
Garvas isn't the first, and indeed won't be the last to move from the world of music videos to film, and we're running down the directors who started on the music video scene before conquering Hollywood.
The music videos: 'Vogue', 'Freedom! '90,' 'The End Of Innocence'
The movies: 'Fight Club', 'The Social Network', 'Gone Girl'
Perhaps the greatest example of a music video director turned filmmaker, David Fincher played a major part in the career of Madonna.
The Oscar-nominated director was a crucial part in Madonna's image and style, and his award-winning work on the videos of 'Vogue' and 'Express Yourself' cemented Madonna's status as one of the most visually daring artists of her generation.
The video for 'Vogue' ranks among Madonna's finest moments, and the music video for 'Express Yourself' cost $10 million dollars in today's money.
Fincher's striking and rich cinematography served as a preview of what the director would become known for, with his work in black-and-white visuals almost bringing him Oscar glory for 'Mank' in 2020.
Fincher defined the 1990s with his work on 'Se7en' and 'Fight Club', and he only went from strength to strength from his days as one of the most stylish directors of the MTV generation.
The director brought Hollywood-style visuals to the flashy videos of the era, and watching videos directed by Fincher gave you a clue as to the sort of director he was going to become.
Best known for his psychological thrillers, Fincher has worked with names as diverse as Paula Abdul, A Perfect Circle, Sting and Nine Inch Nails.
'The Social Network' director has dipped back into music video mode as recently as 2013, directing the uber-stylish music video for 'Suit and Tie' by Jay-Z and his 'Social Network' star Justin Timberlake.
The director is gearing up for his next film 'The Killer' starring Michael Fassbender, but here's hoping he makes a return to the medium that made him famous to begin with.
The music videos: 'Sabotage', 'Buddy Holly', 'It's Oh So Quiet'
The movies: 'Being John Malkovich', 'Her', 'Where The Wild Things Are'
The visual language of 1990's music videos can be traced to one man - Spike Jonze.
Within the space of 18 months, Jonze directed 3 of the most iconic music videos of the decade - 'Sabotage' by the Beastie Boys, 'Buddy Holly' by Weezer, and Bjork's version of 'It's Oh So Quiet'.
Hollywood beckoned for the director, and Jonze's directorial debut 'Being John Malkovich' served as an ingenious cap to the 90s.
The same year as 'Being John Malkovich', Jonze also helped secure Fatboy Slim his only UK number one with the video for 'Praise You' one of the earliest examples of a viral video.
Jonze's guerilla-style direction on the video (as well as his incredible dance moves) helped cement Jonze as one of the most imaginative directors of his generation.
Unlike other directors on this list, Jonze still works in the music video realm to this day, and his filmmaking and music video career exist side by side.
Jonze has collaborated with Beastie Boys and Weezer multiple times over his career, even going so far as to direct and produce the 2020 documentary 'Beastie Boys Story' for Apple TV.
Jonze took home an Oscar for screenwriting for the 2013 film 'Her', with the off-beat Joaquin Pheonix dramedy regarded as one of the best films of the 2010s.
Jonze hasn't made a film since 'Her', in large part thanks to his efforts running Vice's TV channel and his theatre work.
The director has also managed to fit in a side career as a character actor, with Jonze in the cast for Damien Chazelle's upcoming Hollywood-themed epic 'Babylon'.
Spike Jonze is a true example of a renaissance man, but anyone who saw his work on MTV Europe in the late 1990s could have told you that.
Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris
The music videos: 'Tonight, Tonight', 'Californication', 'Freak On A Leash'
The movies: 'Little Miss Sunshine', 'Ruby Sparks', 'Battle Of The Sexes'
If you're a fan of rock music, chances are Dayton and Faris directed a music video by one of your favourite artists.
The husband and wife director team are responsible for some of the most iconic image of rock from that decade, with their work with the Smashing Pumpkins playing a large part in making the band a household name.
Their saccharine, sentimental style of visuals and direction matched perfectly with the sensibilities of Billy Corgan's work, and their work on the video for 'Tonight, Tonight', remains the high point of the band's career.
Dayton and Faris' work on the video for the Korn track 'Freak On A Leash' also created one of the most iconic rock visuals of the 90s, with the famous video tracking a bullet fired from a gun as it makes its way across suburbia.
Hollywood beckoned for the directing duo, and they got their chance with the 2006 comedy-drama 'Little Miss Sunshine'.
The pair somehow failed to pick up an Oscar nomination for their directing effort, but it was their humility-imbued direction that helped sell Michael Arndt's Oscar-winning script.
'Little Miss Sunshine' was one of the biggest indie film successes of the 2000s, serving as a shining example of what the Sundance Film Festival can produce.
Dayton and Faris have only made two more films despise the smash success of 'Little Miss Sunshine', with the 2012 romantic comedy 'Ruby Sparks' proving a winning showcase for fellow creative couple Zoe Kazan and Paul Dano.
Their most recent film, 2017's 'Battle Of The Sexes', was unfortunate to be released in perhaps the greatest year for film in the 2010s, and the winning sports comedy was a fantastic demonstration of Emma Stone's movie star quality.
Netflix came calling for the pair in 2019, and their Paul Rudd clone comedy 'Living With Yourself' is one of the great hidden gems on the service.
The music videos: 'Enjoy The Silence', 'One', 'Heart-Shaped Box'
The movies: 'The American', 'A Most Wanted Man', 'Control'
Perhaps the most talented music video director to make the transition to the silver screen, the Dutchman has forged a career as one of the most stylish directors working today.
Corbijn will be incredibly familiar to anyone with even a passing interest in music, with his work with U2 around the 'Acthung Baby' era helping the Irishmen define the 1990s.
Corbijn got his break as a photographer for music bible NME in the UK, and his striking photographs of Joy Divison, Echo and The Bunnymen and later Depeche Mode helped cement his place in music history.
The Dutchman's finest hour came in 1990 when he directed what was to become Depeche Mode's biggest hit, 'Enjoy The Silence'.
An incredible song in its own right, Corbijn's striking, epic video quickly became synonymous with the track, picking up countless awards in the process.
It took until 2007 for the Dutch native to get behind the camera for a feature-length film, and he returned to his roots with a biopic about the late Joy Division frontman Ian Curtis.
'Control' is an unrelenting portrayal of the mercurial frontman, and due to Corbijn's close personal relationship with the singer, Curtis' bandmates praised the film for its realism, while acknowledging it took some liberties with the actual events.
Corbijn's most mainstream effort came in 2010 when he directed George Clooney in the thriller 'The American', but fans expecting the 'ER' man to get into Jason Bourne-style hijinks were left disappointed.
'The American' is exactly what you'd imagine a thriller film by Anton Corbijn would be, with gorgeous landscape shots, and contemplative silences the order of the day.
The marketability of Clooney was enough to make the film a box office hit, and Corbijn's 2014 thriller, 'A Most Wanted Man', is one of the best screen adaptations of John le Careés work.
'A Most Wanted Man' is notable for being Phillip Seymour Hoffman's final leading role after his passing in early 2014, and Corbijn was able to tap into the inherent sadness and gravitas of the late, great actor with the performance.
Corbijn's final feature film to date is the little-seen 2015 film 'Life', which starred Robert Pattinson as the photographer Dennis Stock who is tasked with photographing Dane DeHaan's James Dean.
The film was a box office failure, but is a great example of Robert Pattinson's auteur streak and willingness to hand himself over to directors like he did with Cronenberg, Herzog, and Gray in his post-'Twilight' era.
Corbijn is still working to this day, with his most recent cinematic release a 2019 concert film about his long-time collaborators Depeche Mode.
The music videos: 'Bad Romance', 'I'm A Slave 4 U', 'Rock Your Body'
The movies: 'I Am Legend', 'The Hunger Games: Catching Fire', 'Bioshock'
Francis Lawrence is a director that has seen success in 3 different decades, and looks set to continue into the 2020s.
Just recently, Lawrence was announced as the director for the 'Bioshock' film on Netflix, and he is returning to the world of 'The Hunger Games' for the prequel film 'The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes'.
Before being handed the reins to multi-million dollar franchises, Lawrence saw incredible success in the music video world, and any budding popstar in the 2000s was well-advised to work with Lawrence to put them on top.
Lady Gaga, Britney Spears, Justin Timberlake, Beyonce, and, erm, Incubus, were among the artists that saw major success thanks to their work with Lawrence.
Lawrence was the most pre-eminent director of music videos in the 2000s, with his masterwork coming in the form of Lady Gaga's video for 'Bad Romance' in 2009.
Lawrence's directing style can be seen as a more subdued version of Baz Luhrmann's maximalist tendencies, which makes him the perfect choice as a steady hand to direct franchise film in Hollywood.
2012's 'The Hunger Games' was a solid opening entry to the franchise, but the franchise did indeed catch fire with Lawrence behind the camera for the 2013 sequel 'Catching Fire'.
Lawrence directing his fellow Lawrence proved to be a great pairing, and his directing style was perfectly matched to the progressively more violent world of Panem falling apart.
Lawrence also directed the 2007 Will Smith flick 'I Am Legend', which saw a major online resurgence for obvious reasons in 2020.
The visuals of Will Smith wandering around an empty New York are still a visual shorthand for apocalyptic despair, and all the tricks Lawrence learned in the music video salt mines served him well.
Lawrence's strong visual style makes him a perfect fit for the world of Rapture with the 'Bioshock' film.
The music videos: 'Everlong', 'Around The World', 'No One Knows'
The movies: 'Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind', 'Be Kind Rewind', 'The Green Hornet'
Gondry is the greatest director out of France since Godard and his merry band of men, and his music video work was a staple of the MTV Europe era.
The music video for 'Around The World' helped launch his compatriots Daft Punk into the mainstream, and it's thanks to Gondry's almost Rubiks Cube-esque logic in the construction of the video.
Gondry has a chameleon-like quality to his work and is able to work in all genres and modes, but the driving force in his work is the surreal quality and bent to his videos.
A supremely gifted visual director, Gondry's work with Bjork, Foo Fighters and Chemical Brothers meant that Hollywood was bound to come calling, and his 2004 film 'Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind' holds a legitimate claim to being the best film of the 2000s.
Gondry scooped an Oscar for his work on the film's screenplay, but his Hollywood career has failed to match up to the sheer, raw talent demonstrated by his music video work.
The Frenchman has had his fair share of misfires, with the 2008 flick 'Be Kind Rewind' a moderate hit that has been forgotten to time and the 2011 adaptation of 'The Green Hornet' an unmitigated disaster.
The Oscar winner reunited with his 'Eternal Sunshine' star Jim Carrey for the comedy-drama 'Kidding' in 2018, which failed to connect with audiences.
Gondry still works in the music video sphere, and the imaginative director still has the goods as demonstrated with the music video for 'Model Village' by Idles in 2020.
The music videos: 'Virtual Insanity', 'Karma Police', 'The Universal'
The movies: 'Under The Skin', 'Birth', 'Sexy Beast'
Another director with a chameleon-like quality on this list, Glazer has created iconic images in the world of music videos, advertisements and film.
Glazer's music video CV is relatively brief compared to other directors on the list, but when Glazer graces us with us genius, he creates unforgettable images.
The Englishman's finest hour came in 1996 when he took the funk-jazz stylings of Jamiroquai and created a music video that instills the "how did they do that?" factor into viewers to this day.
Glazer has only made three feature films, but each of them are outstanding in their own right.
His directorial debut, 2000's 'Sexy Beast', is one of the great British thrillers, with the film helping make an unlikely international star out of leading man Ray Winstone and securing an Oscar nomination for Ben Kingsley.
Glazer's follow-up, 2004's 'Birth', is still one of the most controversial films in film festival history, with the film receiving an icy reception at the Venice Film Festival in 2004.
There would be no box office success or Oscar nominations for birth, but the film has developed a cult reputation among fans of Glazer's work, as well as Nicole Kidman fans.
'Birth' is one of the strangest films to get major studio backing in the last 30 years, and is unquestionably the oddest film Lauren Bacall was ever involved in.
"Odd" is the throughline with Glazer's work, but he managed to marry his odd auteur ambitions with commercial sensibilities in the form of 'Under The Skin' in 2013, one of the greatest British films in recent memory.
Scarlett Johansson lent her star power and gravitas to a film that would be an incredibly hard sell to the average consumer, and Glazer makes incredible use out of his star to create one of the best films of the 2010s.
'Under The Skin' plays off the Johansson persona that made her a household name and Glazer manages to deploy his disturbing sci-fi visuals in an unforgettable mix of actor and director being on the same wavelength.