Wes Anderson is known in the film world for his unique, aesthetic visuals. With 11 films under his belt, the director has achieved numerous awards for his work. Born on May 1, 1969, in Houston, Texas, Wes used to make silent films on his father’s Super 8 camera. They usually starred his brothers (Mel and Eric) or his friends. Before getting into filmmaking, he first dreamed of being a writer. While attending the University of Texas at Austin, he met his roommate and future collaborator, actor Owen Wilson. In 1991, Wes graduated with a Bachelor of Arts with a major in philosophy.
Anderson’s Early Work
Anderson’s first film was 1996’s Bottle Rocket, which starred Owen and Luke Wilson. Though the crime comedy was well-reviewed, it didn’t do too well at the box office, earning only $560,069 with a budget of $5 million. His next film came two years later with Rushmore, a quirky comedy about a high school student named Max (Jason Schwartzman), who has a crush on an elementary school teacher (Olivia Williams). With Bill Murray also starring in the film as one of the students’ fathers, the film was a critical and financial success ($17 million at the box office). The film launched Murray’s second act as a respected actor within independent cinema. Murray has since appeared in every Anderson film until Asteroid City, which he had to drop out of after contracting COVID-19.
As of 2023, Wes Anderson has directed 11 films: Bottle Rocket, Rushmore, The Royal Tenenbaums, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, The Darjeeling Limited, Fantastic Mr. Fox, Moonrise Kingdom, The Grand Budapest Hotel, Isle of Dogs, The French Dispatch, and Asteroid City. His next film, The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar, will be his second adaptation of a Roald Dahl story after 2009’s Fantastic Mr. Fox. Benedict Cumberbatch is to star as the titular character, who is able to see through objects and predict the future with the help of a book he stole. The Wonderful Story of Henry Sugar is expected to arrive on Netflix in the fall since the streamer acquired the Roald Dahl Story Company in September 2021.
Take a look below at our ranking of Wes Anderson’s ten films, from Bottle Rocket through Asteroid City.