My Favourite Action B-Movie directors (And Those I Love to Hate) (70's, 80's & 90's)

by hywel82 | created - 19 Feb 2017 | updated - 1 month ago | Public

My list of favourite action B-movie directors. This list focuses on those who made my favourite B-movie action movies, mainly during the 70's, 80's and 90's. The directors on this list are best known for their low-budget, independent productions. Also included are those I disliked but still made an impression. I've got a similar list to this, but for directors best known for their mainstream, big-budget, Hollywood studio action movies of the same era:

1. Roger Corman

Actor | The Silence of the Lambs

Roger William Corman was born April 5, 1926, in Detroit, Michigan. Initially following in his father's footsteps, Corman studied engineering at Stanford University but while in school, he began to lose interest in the profession and developed a growing passion for film. Upon graduation, he worked a...

"King of the B's"

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Deathsport (1978) [also as Producer] Battle Beyond the Stars (1980) [also as Executive Producer]

2. H.B. Halicki

Writer | Gone in 60 Seconds

H.B. Halicki was born on October 18, 1940 in Dunkirk, New York, USA as Henry Blight Halicki. He was a writer and producer, known for Gone in 60 Seconds (1974), Deadline Auto Theft (1983) and The Junkman (1982). He was married to Denice Shakarian Halicki. He died on August 20, 1989 in Tonawanda, New...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Gone in 60 Seconds (1974) The Junkman (1982) Deadline Auto Theft (1983)

3. Charles Band

Producer | Puppetmaster

Charles Band is a writer, producer, director and publisher. He was born on December 27, 1951 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Charles Robert Band. His father was producer and director Albert Band and his brother is composer Richard Band.

Band has been writing, producing and directing films in the ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Crash! (1976) [also as Producer] Parasite (1982) [also as Producer] Metalstorm: The Destruction of Jared-Syn (1983) [also as Producer] The Dungeonmaster (1984) [also as Producer] Trancers (1984) [also as Producer] Pulse Pounders (1988) [also as Producer and Executive Producer] Trancers II (1991) [also as Producer]

4. Albert Band

Producer | She Came to the Valley

A veteran filmmaker, Albert Band is one of Hollywood's most prolific filmmakers who started his career in the early 50s. He began financing a number of motion pictures through the seventies and eighties and helped his son, Charles Band, bring together his own production company, 'Empire Pictures', ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Doctor Mordrid (1992) Robot Wars (1993)

5. Brian Trenchard-Smith

Director | Arctic Blast

Brian Trenchard-Smith is an Anglo Australian film and television director, producer, and writer, with a reputation for large scale movies on small scale budgets, many of which display a quirky sense of humor that has earned him a cult following. Quentin Tarantino referred to him in Entertainment ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Kung Fu Killers (1974) The Man from Hong Kong (1975) Death Cheaters (1976) Day of the Assassin (1979) Stunt Rock (1979) Turkey Shoot (1982) BMX Bandits (1983) The Quest (1986) Dead End Drive-In (1986) Day of the Panther (1988) Strike of the Panther (1988) The Siege of Firebase Gloria (1989) Official Denial (TV Movie) (1993) Sahara (1995) Voyage of Terror (TV Movie) (1998) Seconds to Spare (TV Movie) (2002)

6. Cirio H. Santiago

Director | Water Lily

Producer/director Cirio H. Santiago is the son of Dr. Ciriaco Santiago, who founded Premiere Productions in Manila in 1946. He has two siblings. After starting out as a producer he started directing english-language movies in the early 70s. Santiago became one of the pioneers of the "Blaxploitation...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Death Force (1978) Firecracker (1981) Stryker (1983) [also as Producer] Naked Vengeance (1985) Wheels of Fire (1985) [also as Producer] Silk (1986) The Devastator (1986) Future Hunters (1986) Eye of the Eagle (1987) Equalizer 2000 (1987) [also as Producer] The Sisterhood (1988) The Expendables (1988) Fast Gun (1988) Eye of the Eagle 2: Inside the Enemy (1989) Eye of the Eagle 3 (1989) Nam Angels (1989) Silk 2 (1989) Dune Warriors (1990) Beyond the Call of Duty (1992) Raiders of the Sun (1992) [also as Producer] Firehawk (1993) Angelfist (1993) One Man Army (1994) Stranglehold (1994)

7. Ferdinando Baldi

Director | Missione finale

Ferdinando Baldi was born on May 19, 1917 in Cava de' Tirreni, Campania, Italy. He was a director and writer, known for Ten Zan - Ultimate Mission (1988), Just a Damned Soldier (1988) and Massacre in the Black Forest (1967). He died on November 12, 2007 in Rome, Lazio, Italy.

I've watched the following that he's directed:

War Bus (1986) Just a Damned Soldier (1988) Ten Zan - Ultimate Mission (1988)

8. Arizal

Director | Membakar Matahari

Indonesian action cinema specialist Arizal was born on January 11, 1943 in Airmolek, Riau, Indonesia. His parents Ibriham Sidi Mangkuto and Matayam bt. M. Yasin were of Minangkabau descent. Following graduation from high school, Arizal went on to study at both the Faculty of Economics at the ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Special Silencers (1982) The Stabilizer (1986) Final Score (1986) American Hunter (1989) Double Crosser (1991)

9. Enzo G. Castellari

Director | Colpi di luce

Enzo G. Castellari was born on July 29, 1938 in Rome, Lazio, Italy as Enzo Girolami. He is a director and actor, known for Light Blast (1985), Warriors of the Wasteland (1983) and The Big Racket (1976). He has been married to Mirella since December 17, 1961. They have two children.

I've watched the following that he's directed:

High Crime (1973) Street Law (1975) The Big Racket (1976) The Heroin Busters (1977) The Inglorious Bastards (1978) Day of the Cobra (1980) 1990: The Bronx Warriors (1982) Escape from the Bronx (1983) Warriors of the Wasteland (1983) Tuareg: The Desert Warrior (1984) Light Blast (1985) Hammerhead (1987) Striker (1988) Jonathan of the Bears (1994)

10. Ruggero Deodato

Director | Cannibal Holocaust

Ruggero Deodato was born on May 7, 1939, in Potenza, Italy, and grew up outside Rome. One of his close friends at the time was Renzo Rossellini, the son of famed Italian director Roberto Rossellini. Knowing Ruggerio's love for the movies, Renzo persuaded him to work as a second unit director on ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Live Like a Cop, Die Like a Man (1976) Last Cannibal World (1977) Concorde Affaire '79 (1979) Cannibal Holocaust (1980) The Atlantis Interceptors (1983) Cut and Run (1985) Lone Runner (1986) The Barbarians (1987)

11. Sam Firstenberg

Director | One More Chance

Since 1980 Sam Firstenberg has been in the independent filmmaking field. Directing 22 theatrical feature films since completing his graduate studies in film at Loyola Marymount University. One More Chance (1983), starring Kirstie Alley, won prizes in major film festivals and sparked the beginning ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Revenge of the Ninja (1983) Ninja III: The Domination (1984) Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo (1984) American Ninja (1985) Avenging Force (1986) American Ninja 2: The Confrontation (1987) Riverbend (1989) Delta Force 3: The Killing Game (1991) American Samurai (1992) Cyborg Cop (1993) Blood Warriors (1993) Cyborg Cop II (1994)

12. Joe D'Amato

Director | La morte ha sorriso all'assassino

Joe D'Amato was born Aristide Massaccesi on December 15, 1936, in Rome, Italy. At age 14 he began working for his father, a chief electrician and later the founder of the company A.C.M. By going to school in the daytime, Massaccesi worked afternoons part-time as a stagehand and stage cameraman ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Tough to Kill (1979) 2020 Texas Gladiators (1982) Endgame (1983)

13. Sergio Martino

Director | Vendetta dal futuro

Talented, prolific and versatile writer/director Sergio Martino has made a vast array of often solid and enjoyable films in such diverse genres as horror, comedy, Western and science-fiction in a career that spans over 40 years.

Martino was born on July 19, 1938, in Rome, Italy. His grandfather was ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

The Violent Professionals (1973) Silent Action (1975) Too Young to Die (1975) 2019: After the Fall of New York (1983) Hands of Steel (1986) The Opponent (1988) After the Condor (1990)

14. Jack Vacek

Actor | Double Nickels

Jack Vacek is an actor and director, known for Double Nickels (1977), Deadly Addiction (1988) and The Junkman (1982).

I've watched the following that he's directed and produced:

Double Nickels (1977) Deadly Addictin (1988)

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Polk County Pot Plane (1977)

16. Eric Karson

Producer | Lionheart

Eric Karson is a director and producer, known for Lionheart (1990), The Octagon (1980) and Angel Town (1990).

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Dirt (1979) The Octagon (1980) Opposing Force (1986) Black Eagle (1988) Angel Town (1990)

17. Stuart Gordon

Writer | Re-Animator

Stuart Gordon started his film directing career in 1985. After graduating from Lane Technical High School, Gordon worked as a commercial artist apprentice prior to enrolling at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Unable to get into the film classes, he enrolled in an acting class and ended up ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Robot Jox (1989)

18. Charles B. Griffith

Writer | Little Shop of Horrors

Legendary screenwriter Charles Byron Griffith was born in Chicago on September 23, 1930. His mother and grandmother starred in the famous radio show, "Myrt and Marge," which went on to New York and became a soap opera. After a hitch in the army, Griffith went to California to live with his ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Eat My Dust (1976) Smokey Bites the Dust (1981)

19. Corey Allen

Actor | Rebel Without a Cause

Corey Allen earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from UCLA in Theatre in 1954. While there, he received the department's Best Actor award and starred in the UCLA film, "A Time Out of War", which won the Academy Award & Cannes & Venice Film Festival for Best Short Film. Upon graduation, he appeared in ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Thunder and Lightning (1977) Star Trek: The Next Generation (TV Series) (5 episodes) (1987-1994)

20. Richard Taylor

Writer | Stingray

Richard Taylor was born on May 21, 1946 in Detroit, Michigan, USA. He is a writer and director, known for Stingray (1978), Fright Show (1985) and Smile (2016).

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Stingray (1978)

21. Harley Cokeliss

Assistant_director | Star Wars: Episode V - The Empire Strikes Back

Writer/director/producer Harley Cokeliss was born Harley Louis Cokliss on February 11, 1945 in San Diego, California. He was raised in Chicago, Illinois. He moved to England in 1966, studying at the London Film School, and started making TV documentaries in 1970, among them It's Fantastic! It's ...

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Battletruck (1982) Black Moon Rising (1986)

22. Antonio Margheriti

Director | Il mondo di Yor

Antonio Margheriti was born on September 19, 1930 in Rome, Lazio, Italy. He was a director and writer, known for Yor, the Hunter from the Future (1983), The Unnaturals (1969) and Io ti amo (1968). He died on November 4, 2002 in Monterosi, Lazio.

I've watched the following that he's directed:

Death Rage (1976) The Squeeze (1978) Car Crash (1981) The Last Hunter (1980) Tiger Joe (1982) The Hunters of the Golden Cobra (1982) Yor: The Hunter from the Future (1983) Last Blood (1983)

23. Ted Nicolaou

Director | Ragewar

Ted Nicolaou was born as Theodore Andrew Nicolaou. He is a director and writer, known for The Dungeonmaster (1984), Savage Island (1985) and TerrorVision (1986). He is married to Rebecca Nicolaou. He was previously married to Sally Nicolaou Hamilton.

I've watched the following that he's directed:

The Dungeonmaster (segment "Desert Pursuit") (1984) TerrorVision (1986)

Added because I found them both entertaining.

24. Donald G. Jackson

Writer | Return of the Roller Blade Seven

Donald G. Jackson was born on April 24, 1943 in Tremont, Mississippi, USA. He was a writer and producer, known for Return of the Roller Blade Seven (1993), The Roller Blade Seven (1991) and Roller Blade (1986). He died on October 20, 2003 in Los Angeles, California, USA.

26. John Carpenter

Soundtrack | Escape from New York

John Howard Carpenter was born in Carthage, New York, to mother Milton Jean (Carter) and father Howard Ralph Carpenter. His family moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky, where his father, a professor, was head of the music department at Western Kentucky University. He attended Western Kentucky ...

27. Godfrey Ho

Director | The Ninja Squad

Godfrey Ho was born in 1948 in Hong Kong as Chi Kueng Ho. He is a director and writer, known for The Ninja Squad (1986), Thunder of Gigantic Serpent (1988) and Thunder Ninja Kids: The Hunt for the Devil Boxer (1991).

28. Phillip J. Roth

Writer | A.P.E.X.

Expressing an interest in cinema from and early age the young Philip J. Roth articulated upon seeing his first film that he wanted to "...tell pictures with light..." and he later achieved his dream. His first movie was the made-for-television (yet overlooked) classic Bad Trip (1988) which led to ...

29. Robert Clouse

Director | Enter the Dragon

A hard-working director throughout his long and varied career, Robert Clouse is known best for his two most successful films: Enter the Dragon (1973) and _Game of Death (1978_. Clouse was a director who worked mainly in the visuals of cinema, owing to the fact that he was completely deaf, he ...

30. David Worth

Camera_department | Innerspace

David Worth was born on September 7, 1943. He is a cinematographer and director, known for Innerspace (1987), Kickboxer (1989) and Warrior of the Lost World (1983).

31. Albert Pyun

Director | Cyborg

Albert Pyun is an award-winning American filmmaker best known for his contributions to the science-fiction and action genres. He is credited with pioneering the cyborg sub-genre and is considered to be a maverick and renegade in independent genre cinema. With over 50 titles to his name, he has ...

32. Peter Manoogian

Director | Ragewar

Peter Manoogian is an assistant director and producer, known for The Dungeonmaster (1984), The Howling (1981) and Eliminators (1986).

33. Jim Wynorski

Director | The Lost Empire

A 25-year veteran in the Hollywood exploitation field, writer/producer/director Jim Wynorski is responsible for over 150 varied motion pictures in a myriad of genres. Leaving behind a successful commercial business in New York, Wynorski relocated to California in 1980 and soon found himself on the ...

34. Andy Sidaris

Director | Malibu Express

Andy Sidaris was born on February 20, 1931 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. He was a director and writer, known for Malibu Express (1985), Stacey (1973) and Seven (1979). He was married to Arlene Sidaris and Anne Sidaris-Reeves. He died on March 7, 2007 in Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California, USA.

35. Michael Winner

Director | Death Wish

Winner was an only child, born in Hampstead, London, England, to Helen (née Zlota) and George Joseph Winner (1910-1975), a company director. His family was Jewish; his mother was Polish and his father of Russian extraction. Following his father's death, Winner's mother gambled recklessly and sold ...

36. James Glickenhaus

Writer | The Soldier

Writer/director/producer James Glickenhaus was born on July 24, 1950 in New York City. He grew up in affluent New Rochelle. James first fell in love with movies at age eight. Glickenhaus attended Fieldston School in Riverdale, New York, the University of California, Antioch College in Yellow ...

37. Lamar Card

Producer | Le sang des autres

Lamar Card was born on September 8, 1942 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, USA. He is a producer and assistant director, known for The Blood of Others (1984) and Terror Train (1980).

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