Check This Out: A List of Films You Must See to Work with Spielberg

August 1, 2011
Source: JoBlo

Steven Spielberg

Not just anyone gets to work with iconic filmmaker Steven Spielberg, let alone simply getting a meeting with the man behind such classics as Raiders of the Lost Ark, Jurassic Park and E.T. But aside from having a genuine filmmaker's eye and various levels of talent behind the camera like recent Spielberg collaborators J.J. Abrams, Peter Jackson, Mchael Bay and more, what else do you need to work with the master? Well, rumor has it there's a list of 206 films known as The Spielberg Curriculum that is said put together by Spielberg himself which he feels any aspiring filmmaker must see to work with him. More info below.

Now, I seriously doubt Spielberg tests filmmaker's on these films or sits with a checklist and asks every potential collaborator if he's seen each of the films on the list (though you never know), but in looking at the full list (which you can see as a Google doc right here), watching all of these films would be like having makeshift film school in your house. There's a good chance this list isn't even a real tool of Spielberg's and it's just a creation by another cinephile, but you can't deny that it's good advice to make sure you've seen films like Annie Hall, Double IndemnityBreathless and The French Connection along with just one of Spielberg's own, Close Encounters of the Third Kind. Personally, I'm embarrassed my count isn't higher.

If your own counts is under 50, you should probably get all of these in your Netflix Queue stat if you have any aspirations of working with Steven Spielberg. Thanks to GoIntoTheStory (via JoBlo) for originally sharing this neat list and giving everyone a whole bunch of great films to watch the rest of the summer. How many have you seen?

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  • Scotty97
    33. Ouch. I need to get to work. 
  • Anonymous
    52.  Still ain't makin' the grade.  Course, I have about as much chance of working with Spielberg as I do of bedding Scarlett Johannson...
    • PJ
      52 for me as well. I actually have a bunch of the yellow ones qued up in netflix :)
  • Criticatlarge
    Dayum, not one black director.
    • Adam Haas
      I'm pretty sure the list is based on quality of film, not ethnicity of director.
  • Philip J. Fry
    How many of these movies were made past 1990? I dont really care for lists that are all comprised of old movies, dont get me wrong there are definitely good ones. But to completely disregard the past two decades of films seems highly it just me?
    • happy camper
      Most of the directors today rehash what the greats have already accomplished.
      • Philip J. Fry
        True in some cases, but there are plenty out there that have done it Tarintino, Fincher, Nolan, Jackson to name a few of the bigger ones that shouldnt be outcasted. I am also aware, if this list is truely Speilbergs list, these are the movies that inspired him. I would also hope he really doesn't care too much if people have seen much of the list, because people draw inspiration from all over, and this would be just his opinion.
    • Gerstein Musmanno
      To play Devil's advocate, perhaps he truly intends this as a curriculum, an education in film.  Not a "how well versed are you in quality film" or anything like that, but quite literally, you are not prepared to respect the medium or properly work with it until you learn from these films. It's the same with most art, if you think about it.  An English professor is likely to be a fan of literature from the past decade, but would focus on established classics to educate young students.  I'm sure Spielberg has plenty of recent movies that he enjoys and holds in high esteem, but isn't necessarily prepared to use as "textbooks", if you will.
    • Anonymous
      Past 90, which would include Jurrasic Park, Philidelphia, Forrest Gump, The Usual Suspects... ah well it's his list. I should just be quiet I've only seen 46 on the list btw.
    • equustel
      Perhaps he's assuming people would be more familiar with the past two decades of film, but ignorant of many great films made before the 90s. Which is true.
      • Philip J. Fry
        Agreed, that very well could be.
    • Alex O
      That's like saying, Why do we need to learn about Roman and Greek literature when so many good books have come out in the past few years? 
      • Philip J. Fry
        No its not, I did state 'there are definitely some good ones'. Do we need to read all of the books written in Roman and Greek literature to write a book today? No I don't think so.
  • Itance7
    Wow I've only seen 6, I'm glad that I have no aspirations to become a director
  • Euacbgign
    Wow. I went in expecting to have not seen them all and I'm 206/206... I guess if I ever were to become a director I could work with Spielberg. Lol
  • happy camper
    163. would of liked to see The Wild Bunch and Barry Lyndon but great list none the less.
  • ate
    So American heavy. And it's not "to work with Spielberg" it's purportedly to work in the industry. Yeah, maybe Hollywood, but I doubt worldwide there'll be close to no foreign movies.  Plus, I'm surprised after seeing all of them that you still get directors like Raja Gosnell. 
  • Christophereo
    From beginning to end, I've seen 58 of these. The majority of the rest I have seen multiple scenes or stills and that's enough. Some I will never watch. Some on the list I question (Godfather III?). Any "must see" list will have questionable additions as well as omissions. Not bad.
  • Angry Chief
    24. Oof. For a director and a student, I need to get to work. I'll agree with ate, however. it is very american heavy.
  • There are so many films that should be on there, and a few that shouldn't. I was in film school (once upon a time) and the ideal list changes constantly, but it's also attributed to a person's taste...which helps to understand their own style for story telling. Your list, if you ever wanted to direct, should be very different but have a lot of the same. I know that has nothing to do with working with Spielberg, but I think it's important to note. By the way, did Michael Bay see these? He needs to. :/
  • Rodion
    Only 26! I'm surprised. I do however have 17 more on my shelf i haven't watched yet. Fortunately i work in a video store and get free rentals so they'll all be done by the end of the year! 
  • Lebowski
    Fucking really?. I mean the man has directed some classic films, but a list? that he made? Really? Because this is some sophomoric, film school-esque sad bastard elitism if ever I saw it. Plus there's the fact that Spielberg hasn't directed anything approaching any of these films for a decade. Bearded men in glass houses etc. 
    • Anonymous
      Lol good point.
  • Anonymous
    96 on the list, still not proud, great list thanks. Thats less than 50%
  • Igrin
    49 but maybe more, i know most of the names in their hebrew name :)
  • Armak
    Fake list. Not just bitter cuz my score is 98, promise. Fake.
  • astroboy3000
    this can't be the right list, Tango & Cash was nowhere to be found on it.
  • Not nearly enough foreign films on that list.
  • Topher
    If this list is true, then I lose all respect I have for him. Even if this is just a list of recommendations.
  • just a guest
    Update: Edgar Wright, who worked with Spielberg on writing Tintin, appears to have confirmed via Twitter that the list is fake.
  • Mathias
    Fake or not, I've seen 49, hadn't expected to have seen so many of them.
  • mars
    113. would like to see some actual lists of this length from renowned directors.
  • Hahnsolo
    108 bitches
  • Anonymous
    No sign of Bladerunner or Alien. Yet Close Encounters is required? LOL.
  • Hattori Hanzo
    Got 143 on either DVD or Blu Ray ... I agree with an earlier post that while not all these movies are greater or even better than a lot of today's movies, they all contain at least one great original aspect of movie making i.e.: writing, directing, acting etc.   Most of today's film which are simply rehashing these original ideas. And some such as Double Indemnity or Justice for All while great are simply hard to watch because they are so out dated As for those who think Spielberg sucks or don’t like this list, well either you haven't seen them or you are stuck in the same old Captain America or Hangover 2 shit and for that, may God have mercy on  your soul!
  • David Banner
    Empire Strikes Back is not on the list??? Hmmm.....
  • Well tt wasn't as bad as I expected I made it to 70. Certainly a brilliant and diverse selection of movies no matter who created the list.
  • Anonymous
    is all a plot to get you to go watch netflix
  • weezy1
    157...better than I thought...all those years of film class, the Late show and Saturday matinees on channels 9 and 11 would have paid off!
  • Bwhite4star
    While I think the list being SS baby is BS, I have seen 75 of them and parts of about 40 more...
  • Anonymous
    Or you could just come up with this gimmick of messing up the lighting in every single movie and call it a genius "director's trademark" and still work with Spielberg
  • bbq bob
    how jewish. Go ahead and delete my comment.
  • I've only seen 15! I hate myself.
  • Para
    seen 190. hence my opinion on any movie topic  is more valid than any of yours.
  • Daysdennis
    HAHA an actor talks about it here :p hilarious!!! He just mentions it briefly though - but you get the idea:




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