Actors who got into directing

Maggie Gyllenhaal makes stunning directorial debut with new psychodrama starring Olivia Colman and Dakota Johnson

Stars Insider

06/09/21 | StarsInsider

MOVIES Directors

Many actors say they couldn't imagine doing anything else for a job. However, with successful acting often comes fame and wealth, and with it the ability to try out some interesting new ideas. For these celebrities, that meant taking a seat in the director's chair.

Maggie Gyllenhaal is making quite the splash with her feature directorial debut for the new psychodrama 'The Lost Daughter,' a film adaptation of Elena Ferrante's novel of the same name. The film stars Olivia Colman and Dakota Johnson in what is being hailed as some of their best, most electric performances to date. The story follows a college professor whose is sent spiraling into her unsettling past after becoming obsessed with a mother and her daughter while on vacation in Italy.

At the Venice Film Festival, Gyllenhaal said that while making the film she learned “that I’ve always been a director, but I didn’t feel entitled to admit it to myself. Weirdly, it was playing porn director Candy on ‘The Deuce’ when I said ‘this is me actually, this is a better job,'" Deadline reports.

Click through this gallery to see which other actors have gotten into directing—some may surprise you!


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