Alan Taylor (director)

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Alan Taylor
Alan Taylor 2013 crop.jpg
Taylor in 2013
Born (1959-01-13) January 13, 1959 (age 63)
Alma materNew York University
OccupationTelevision director, film director
Years active1988–present
Spouse
(m. 2004⁠–⁠2020)
Children3

Alan Taylor (born January 13, 1959)[1] is an American television and film director. He is known for his work on TV shows such as Lost, The West Wing, Six Feet Under, Sex and the City, The Sopranos, Game of Thrones, Boardwalk Empire, Deadwood, and Mad Men. He also directed films such as Palookaville, Thor: The Dark World, Terminator Genisys, and The Many Saints of Newark. In 2007 Taylor won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series for The Sopranos episode "Kennedy and Heidi". In 2008 and 2018 he was also nominated in the same category for the Mad Men episode "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" and the Game of Thrones episode "Beyond the Wall" respectively.

Early life

Taylor's father, James J. Taylor, was a private in the U.S. army translating for Voice of America, stationed in Yokohama, who subsequently held numerous jobs before becoming a videographer in Washington, D.C. Taylor's mother, Mimi Cazort, was curator emerita for the National Gallery of Canada. His sister is the indie rock musician Anna Domino.[2]

He spent part of his life in Manor Park, Ottawa, Canada, and attended Manor Park Public School and Lisgar Collegiate Institute high school. As part of the Communications Club at Lisgar, he acted in its production of The Mouse That Roared. He went on to major in history at the University of Toronto and then at New York City's Columbia University before transferring to New York University in his late 20s to study film under instructors including director Martin Scorsese.[1][3]

Career

Taylor has directed for numerous programs on both network television and premium cable, most often on HBO.

Taylor's early work on television include work on The Sopranos, Sex and the City, and The West Wing. Taylor joined the crew of the HBO western drama Deadwood as a director for the first season in 2004. Taylor directed the pilot episodes of Mad Men ("Smoke Gets in Your Eyes") and Bored to Death as well as subsequent episodes of each. He joined the HBO series Game of Thrones, directing seven episodes including critically acclaimed season 1 episode "Baelor."[4][5] He worked on a television adaptation of the Strugatsky brothers' 1971 science fiction novel Roadside Picnic for the WGN America network.[6] Besides his television work, Taylor's early films include Palookaville, The Emperor's New Clothes, and Kill the Poor.

In the 2010s, Taylor began working on large budget blockbuster films. He was hired to direct Thor: The Dark World (2013) a superhero film and sequel to 2011's Thor.[7] He was approached by Marvel producer Kevin Feige following director Patty Jenkins exit from the project and hoped he would inject a darker tone into the project after seeing Taylor's work on Game of Thrones. Taylor's next film was Terminator Genisys, a film that Taylor hoped to fix following his reading of the script, citing his love of the first two Terminator films.[8] After directing nine episodes for the HBO series The Sopranos, Taylor was approached by show creator David Chase to return to direct the 2021 prequel film The Many Saints of Newark.

In August 2022, it was announced that Taylor was hired to direct multiple episodes of the second season of House of the Dragon.

Personal life

Taylor currently lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his three children and a rescued dog named Nasa.

Directing filmography

Film

Short film

  • That Burning Question (1990) (also writer)

Television

Reception

Below is the critical, public and commercial reception to films Taylor has directed, as of October 11, 2021.

Film Rotten Tomatoes[27] Metacritic[28] CinemaScore[29] Budget Box office[30]
Palookaville 64% (11 reviews)
The Emperor's New Clothes 73% (85 reviews) 60 (28 reviews)
Kill the Poor 25% (8 reviews) 52 (7 reviews)
Thor: The Dark World 66% (284 reviews) 54 (44 reviews) A- $170 million $644.8 million
Terminator Genisys 27% (274 reviews) 38 (41 reviews) B+ $155 million $435.9 million
The Many Saints of Newark 72% (174 reviews) 60 (48 reviews) C+ $50 million $10.3 million

References

  1. ^ a b "Ottawa-educated director took Emmy for Sopranos' famed snuff-out episode". Canada.com. The Ottawa Citizen. September 20, 2007. Archived from the original on November 15, 2013. Retrieved December 15, 2013. ...the 48-year-old TV director...
  2. ^ Estrada, Louie (February 13, 2005). "James Taylor Dies; Put Theater on Video". The Washington Post. p. C11. Archived from the original on September 28, 2007.
  3. ^ Hibberd, James (August 12, 2021). "Director Alan Taylor's Tortuous Journey to the 'Sopranos' Movie: "The Hardest Job I've Ever Done"". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on August 13, 2021. Retrieved August 14, 2021.
  4. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (September 12, 2011). "'Game of Thrones': Neil Marshall Among Season 2 Directors". The Hollywood Reporter
  5. ^ Hibberd, James (June 29, 2016). "Game of Thrones season 7 directors revealed". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved June 29, 2016.
  6. ^ Schwartz, Terri (September 11, 2015). "Terminator Genisys Alan Taylor returning to TV with Roadside Picnic adaptation at WGN America". Zap2It.
  7. ^ Kroll, Justin (September 5, 2013). "'Thrones' and 'Thor: The Dark World' Helmer Eyed to Direct Next 'Terminator'". Variety. Retrieved November 3, 2013.
  8. ^ Kroll, Justin (September 5, 2013). "Terminator: Genisys". Bloody Disgusting. Retrieved November 3, 2013.
  9. ^ ""Pax Soprana" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  10. ^ HBO. ""The Strong, Silent Type" on The Sopranos episode guide". Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  11. ^ ""Rat Pack" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  12. ^ ""The Fleshy Part of the Thigh" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  13. ^ ""The Ride" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  14. ^ ""Kaisha" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  15. ^ ""Stage 5" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  16. ^ ""Kennedy and Heidi" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  17. ^ ""Blue Comet" on The Sopranos episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on February 14, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  18. ^ ""It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year" on Six Feet Under episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on January 30, 2010. Retrieved February 11, 2010.
  19. ^ Sarnoff, Elizabeth (April 11, 2004). "Here Was a Man". Deadwood. Season 1. Episode 4. HBO.
  20. ^ Mann, Ted (March 27, 2005). "Requiem for a Gleet". Deadwood. Season 2. Episode 4. HBO.
  21. ^ ""Affair" on Big Love episode guide". HBO. Archived from the original on January 29, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  22. ^ AMC. ""Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" on Mad Men episode guide". Archived from the original on January 28, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  23. ^ AMC. ""Ladies Room" on Mad Men episode guide". Archived from the original on February 4, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  24. ^ AMC. ""Nixon vs. Kennedy" on Mad Men episode guide". Archived from the original on February 4, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  25. ^ AMC. ""The Mountain King" on Mad Men episode guide". Archived from the original on January 29, 2010. Retrieved February 12, 2010.
  26. ^ "Boardwalk Empire episode "Nights in Ballygran" synopsis". HBO. Archived from the original on October 29, 2010. Retrieved October 24, 2010.
  27. ^ "Alan Taylor". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  28. ^ "Alan Taylor". Metacritic. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  29. ^ "CinemaScore". cinemascore.com. Retrieved May 11, 2015.
  30. ^ "Alan Taylor Movie Box office". boxofficemojo.com. Amazon.com. Retrieved May 11, 2015.

External links