Spielberg wins vote as best film director

STEVEN SPIELBERG has emerged as the most successful film director of all time in a poll of 1,500 movie industry insiders and cinema buffs, including President Bill Clinton.

The poll, organised by the American Film Institute, ended predictably - with Orson Welles's Citizen Kane in the Number One slot - but Spielberg had no fewer than five titles in the top 100.

The director, who has often craved greater critical acclaim, saw his epic Schindler's List make the number nine position on the list while ET - the Extra-Terrestrial was voted 25th, Jaws 48th, Raiders of the Lost Ark 60th and Close Encounters of the Third Kind 64th.

Movie critics hailed Schindler's List's ranking as a considerable achievement for Spielberg given that the other top 10 films had stood the test of time well. As well as Citizen Kan (1941), the other top 10 films were: Casablanca (1942); The Godfather (1972); Gone With the Wind (1939); Lawrence of Arabia (1962); The Wizard of Oz (1939); The Graduate (1967); On the Waterfront (1954); and Singin' in the Rain (1952).

The film institute refused to say exactly who was on the list of 1,500 voters, how many votes each movie polled or what criteria were involved. It did say, however, that voters were asked to choose from 400 films dating back to 1912 - a silent version of Richard III - selected by its own panel of experts.

Alfred Hitchcock and Billy Wilder each had four films in the top 100. Hitchcock's entries were Psycho (18); North by Northwest (40); Rear Window (42) and Vertigo (61). Wilder's were Sunset Boulevard (12); Some Like It Hot (14); Double Indemnity (38) and The Apartment (93).

Most of the movies in the top 100 were dramas. In addition, there were 11 comedies, eight musicals, nine war movies, eight westerns, four science fiction films and four horror movies. Two were animated features, both from Disney, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (49) and Fantasia (58).

Marlon Brando starred in two of the top 10 movies, The Godfather and On the Waterfront, while James Stewart and Robert DeNiro had the most starring roles in the top 100 with five each. The most successful actress was Katharine Hepburn with four films. Natalie Wood, Diane Keaton and Faye Dunaway had three each.

The critics' 100 finest films

1 Citizen Kane 1941

2 Casablanca 1942

3 The Godfather 1972

4 Gone With the Wind 1939

5 Lawrence of Arabia 1962

6 The Wizard of Oz 1939

7 The Graduate 1967

8 On the Waterfront 1954

9 Schindler's List 1993

10 Singin' in the Rain 1952

11 It's a Wonderful Life 1946

12 Sunset Boulevard 1950

13 The Bridge on the River Kwai 1957

14 Some Like It Hot 1959

15 Star Wars 1977

16 All About Eve 1950

17 The African Queen 1951

18 Psycho 1960

19 Chinatown 1974

20 One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest 1975

21 The Grapes of Wrath 1940

22 2001: A Space Odyssey 1968

23 The Maltese Falcon 1941

24 Raging Bull 1980

25 ET, the Extra-Terrestrial 1982

26 Dr Strangelove 1964

27 Bonnie and Clyde 1967

28 Apocalypse Now 1979

29 Mr Smith Goes to Washington 1939

30 The Treasure of the Sierra Madre 1948

31 Annie Hall 1977

32 The Godfather Part II 1974

33 High Noon 1952

34 To Kill a Mockingbird 1962

35 It Happened One Night 1934

36 Midnight Cowboy 1969

37 The Best Years of Our Lives 1946

38 Double Indemnity 1944

39 Doctor Zhivago 1965

40 North by Northwest 1959

41. West Side Story 1961

42 Rear Window 1954

43 King Kong 1933

44 The Birth of a Nation 1915

45 A Streetcar Named Desire 1951

46 A Clockwork Orange 1971

47 Taxi Driver 1976

48 Jaws 1975

49 Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs 1937

50 Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid 1969

51 The Philadelphia Story 1940

52 From Here to Eternity 1953

53 Amadeus 1984

54 All Quiet on the Western Front 1930

55 The Sound of Music 1965

56 M-A-S-H 1970

57 The Third Man 1949

58 Fantasia 1940

59 Rebel Without a Cause 1955

60 Raiders of the Lost Ark 1981

61 Vertigo 1958

62 Tootsie 1982

63 Stagecoach 1939

64 Close Encounters of the Third Kind 1977

65 The Silence of the Lambs 1991

66 Network 1976

67 The Manchurian Candidate 1962

68 An American in Paris 1951

69 Shane 1953

70 The French Connection 1971

71 Forrest Gump 1994

72 Ben-Hur 1959

73 Wuthering Heights 1939

74 The Gold Rush 1925

75 Dances With Wolves 1980

76 City Lights 1931

77 American Graffiti, 1973

78 Rocky 1976

79 The Deer Hunter 1978

80 The Wild Bunch 1969

81 Modern Times 1936

82 Giant 1956

83 Platoon 1986

84 Fargo 1996

85 Duck Soup 1933

86 Mutiny on the Bounty 1935

87 Frankenstein 1931

88 Easy Rider 1969

89 Patton 1970

90 The Jazz Singer 1927

91 My Fair Lady 1964

92 A Place in the Sun 1951

93 The Apartment 1960

94 Goodfellas 1990

95 Pulp Fiction 1994

96 The Searchers 1956

97 Bringing Up Baby 1938

98 Unforgiven 1992

99 Guess Who's Coming to Dinner 1967

100 Yankee Doodle Dandy, 1942

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Life and Style
A still from the 1939 film version of Margaret Mitchell's 'Gone with the Wind'
David Silva strokes home his and City's second goal
Arts and Entertainment
a clockwork orange, stanley kubrick
The Tesco Hudl2: An exceptional Android tablet that's powerful, well-built and outstanding value

Sarah Silverman (middle) with sister Reform Rabbi Susan Silverman (right) and sister actress Laura Silverman (left) at Jerusalem's Western Wall for feminist Hanuka candle-lighting ceremony
peopleControversial comedian stages pro-equality Hanukkah lighting during a protest at Jerusalem's Wailing Wall
After another poor series in Sri Lanka, Alastair Cook claimed all players go through a lean period
Arts and Entertainment
The Bach Choir has been crowned the inaugural winner of Sky Arts’ show The Great Culture Quiz
arts + ents140-year-old choir declared winner of Sky Arts' 'The Great Culture Quiz'
Life and Style
food + drinkAuthor DBC Pierre presents his guide to the morning after
Life and Style
food + drink
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Finance Director

£65000 - £80000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Finance Director required to jo...

Recruitment Genius: Medico-Legal Assistant

£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a unique opportunity fo...

Ashdown Group: (PHP / Python) - Global Media firm

£50000 per annum + 26 days holiday,pension: Ashdown Group: A highly successful...

The Jenrick Group: Quality Inspector

£27000 per annum + pension + holidays: The Jenrick Group: A Quality Technician...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans appeal: 'You look for someone who's an inspiration and try to be like them'

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Could cannabis oil reverse the effects of cancer?

Could cannabis oil reverse effects of cancer?

As a film following six patients receiving the controversial treatment is released, Kate Hilpern uncovers a very slippery issue
The Interview movie review: You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here

The Interview movie review

You can't see Seth Rogen and James Franco's Kim Jong Un assassination film, but you can read about it here
Serial mania has propelled podcasts into the cultural mainstream

How podcasts became mainstream

People have consumed gripping armchair investigation Serial with a relish typically reserved for box-set binges
Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up for hipster marketing companies

Jesus Christ has become an unlikely pin-up

Kevin Lee Light, aka "Jesus", is the newest client of creative agency Mother while rival agency Anomaly has launched Sexy Jesus, depicting the Messiah in a series of Athena-style poses
Rosetta space mission voted most important scientific breakthrough of 2014

A memorable year for science – if not for mice

The most important scientific breakthroughs of 2014
Christmas cocktails to make you merry: From eggnog to Brown Betty and Rum Bumpo

Christmas cocktails to make you merry

Mulled wine is an essential seasonal treat. But now drinkers are rediscovering other traditional festive tipples. Angela Clutton raises a glass to Christmas cocktails
5 best activity trackers

Fitness technology: 5 best activity trackers

Up the ante in your regimen and change the habits of a lifetime with this wearable tech
Paul Scholes column: It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves

Paul Scholes column

It's a little-known fact, but I have played one of the seven dwarves
Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Fifa's travelling circus once again steals limelight from real stars

Club World Cup kicked into the long grass by the continued farce surrounding Blatter, Garcia, Russia and Qatar
Frank Warren column: 2014 – boxing is back and winning new fans

Frank Warren: Boxing is back and winning new fans

2014 proves it's now one of sport's biggest hitters again
Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton: The power dynamics of the two first families

Jeb Bush vs Hillary Clinton

Karen Tumulty explores the power dynamics of the two first families
Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley with a hotbed of technology start-ups

Stockholm is rivalling Silicon Valley

The Swedish capital is home to two of the most popular video games in the world, as well as thousands of technology start-ups worth hundreds of millions of pounds – and it's all happened since 2009
Did Japanese workers really get their symbols mixed up and display Santa on a crucifix?

Crucified Santa: Urban myth refuses to die

The story goes that Japanese store workers created a life-size effigy of a smiling "Father Kurisumasu" attached to a facsimile of Our Lord's final instrument of torture
Jennifer Saunders and Kate Moss join David Walliams on set for TV adaptation of The Boy in the Dress

The Boy in the Dress: On set with the stars

Walliams' story about a boy who goes to school in a dress will be shown this Christmas