Joe Wright

An English director adept in adapting dramatic literature, Joe Wright also demonstrated a facility with more modern day fare that was far removed from the period costume dramas for which he had first gained notoriety. Wright first broke out in England with his critically-acclaimed and award-nominated take on the Jane Austen classic, "Pride and Prejudice" (2005), starring his soon-to-be muse, Keira Knightley. Praised for his insistence on a sense of movement and realism in a genre long-considered stuffy and reserved, Wright continued his success in adapting period source material with "Atonement" (2007), a sweeping epic starring Knightley and based on the award-winning novel by British contemporary Ian McEwan. Two contemporary-set projects followed - the based-on-fact tale of music and redemption "The Soloist" (2009), starring Robert Downey, Jr. and Jamie Foxx, and the violent fairy tale thriller "Hanna" (2011), with young Saoirse Ronan in the title role. He paired with Knightley for the third time to bring Russian novelist Leo Tolstoy's sweeping novel "Anna Karenina" (2012) to life in an intoxicatingly extravagant production. One of the more technically adventurous and unpredictable young directors of his generation, Wright continued to seek out new challenges, for both audiences and himself as a filmmaker.