We’re starting today with Jane Campion’s The Piano, which gave Holly Hunter the role of a lifetime and launched the career of a very young Anna Paquin. All three women won Oscars for their work here… and it goes without saying that we need more filmmakers like Jane out there! The Piano opened 25 years ago today in 1993.
And in keeping with the Oscar tone, Danny Boyle’s Slumdog Millionaire hit theaters today in 2008. It went on to win eight Oscars, including Best Picture and Best Director for Boyle.
The legendary Clint Eastwood began a new phase of his career today in 1971 with his directorial debut, Play Misty for Me. A syrupy thriller about an obsessive stalker hounding Eastwood’s laid-back DJ, it set the stage for later thrillers like Fatal Attraction… as well as launching Eastwood’s hugely successful directing career (34 films and counting, plus a couple of well-deserved Oscars) after he had already established himself as one of Hollywood’s biggest stars. (And yes, that’s everyone’s favorite Bluth clan matriarch/emasculating Archer mom Jessica Walter as Eastwood’s fan-who-goes-too-far.)