As we bid farewell to another remarkable year in cinema, BLEX is thrilled to present a curated list of the top 10 Directorial Debuts in 2023. These emerging directors have not only made their mark but have left an indelible impression on the cinematic landscape.
From the sci-fi visionary Juel Taylor to the comedically insightful Cord Jefferson. Or the visually compelling A.V. Rockwell, and the multifaceted Michael B. Jordan, this compilation celebrates the dynamic voices that have graced the feature length director’s chair for the first time.
Whether they made us laugh or think, this list is a testament to a new generation of storytellers shaping original narratives in Hollywood
Juel Taylor | They Cloned Tyrone
It’s been a good year for Taylor who not only made his directorial debut with the original concept They Cloned Tyrone but he also lent his pen to Shooting Stars and Young. Wild. Free.
Cord Jefferson | American Fiction
Jefferson knows how to make an entrance. His debut was star-studded but after seeing the film we can’t imagine anyone saying no to this project.
A.V. Rockwell | A Thousand and One
AV Rockwell beautifully directed A Thousand and One which was led by Teyana Taylor in an award-worthy debut feature role.
Raine Allen Miller | Rye Lane
Laugh through the London’s streets with Miller’s visually appealing Rye Lane. While the film is about two strangers reeling over their break-ups the film is anything but heartbreaking.
Savannah Leaf | Earthmama
she delivers a poignant narrative, delving into the heartfelt journey of a pregnant woman fighting to reclaim custody of her children. It offers an intimate portrayal and distinct perspective on the complexities of Black motherhood.
Michael B Jordan | Creed III
What can’t Jordan do. Jordan not only makes his directorial debut but he does so while directing himself in the third installment (and my personal favorite) of the franchise.
Raven Jackson | All Dirt Roads Taste of Salt
Raven Jackson’s debut film elegantly explores grief within a nuanced coming-of-age tale, offering an imaginative and poetic narrative.
Eva Longoria | Flamin’ Hot
Longoria tells her version of the origin story of how Flamin’ Hot Cheetos while also telling the story of family in an authentic and lively way.
Mo McRae | A Lot of Nothing
Actor and director gives us a social-commentary film as well as a musical journey on the importance of minding your business, varying factors of judgement, and our own bias.
Kenya Barris | You People
This film had mixed reviews but not from us. We love a film that allows us to laugh at ourselves and our idiocrasies from time to time. Barris is known for his artistic commentary to race and this one went where it needed to go. We figured if you didn’t like it, it was probably because you were trigger. Chill.