Considering Clint Eastwood is still sharp as a fine pointed nail in his film choices at the age of 82, it's a good bet he'll live to his desired age of 105. As well, he has more than just 104-year-old Portuguese director Manoel de Oliveria ahead of him in the elder bracket of directors. Nevertheless, not many of those older directors are currently working as much as they should be. Most directors currently in an 80s and 90s age range retired from films within the last 20 years.
But you might be surprised to learn about a few other names beyond de Oliveria that still make films at a very old age. Other than Eastwood, none are American. Most American directors currently 80 or older ultimately retired and ended up switching to acting or simply producing. 86-year-old Roger Corman is the best example of that and who now produces myriad low-budget horror films to this very day.
So who's the second oldest director in the world?
Tie Between Miklos Jancso and Alain Resnais
While Romanian director Jancso (age 91) only directed a small segment of a recent movie, longtime French director Alain Resnais is much more active as a director at age 90. Jancso may not be that well known in America, though most film fans know about Resnais and his earlier movies. His "Hiroshima, Mon Amour" and "Last Year at Marienbad" are still studied in film schools and occasionally played on Turner Classic Movies.
Resnais is currently directing "Aimer, Boire et Chanter", which is his second film within the last year after a more erratic era during the 2000s. Even if the above project likely won't be seen in America, he isn't the only elderly director from France still working.
Andrzej Wajda (Age 86)
This legendary Polish director may be the best known in America other than the late Krzysztof Kieslowski. His "Ashes and Diamonds" alone is one of the most compelling films about World War II ever made. Nothing has slowed down this director either, other than rightfully being more selective in recent years.
Currently, he's in post-production on a biopic about the life of Lech Walesa, which must have been very personal considering it's Wajda's first directed film in several years.
Jean-Luc Godard (Clint Eastwood's French Peer)
You may be asking yourself "Godard is still alive?" Yes, the director of the iconic "Breathless" is still alive, working, and the same age Eastwood is. However, unlike Eastwood, he seems to be infatuated with 3D to a point where he'll put an art house spin on the technique.
His latest film is called "Goodbye to Language 3D", and it sounds avant-garde enough to the point where 3D sounds intriguing rather than exploitive. That wouldn't be surprising when you remember how the French invented or reinvented every other film technique used today.
Don't be surprised to see Godard also directing to the age of 100 as Eastwood might. Both could easily be the last standing marketable traditional and experimental filmmakers.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Clint Eastwood
- Alain Resnais