The 25 Greatest Music Video Directors of All Time

The 25 greatest music video directors in the history of the medium. Each director’s best works are also loosely ranked within.


  1. Spike Jonze (born 1969)  Daft Punk-Da Funk (1997), Weezer: Buddy Holly (1994), Fatboy Slim: Praise You (1999), Beastie Boys- Sabotage (1994), Fatboy Slim: Weapon of Choice (2001), The Pharcyde-Drop (1995), The Chemical Brothers: Elektrobank (1997), Kanye West: Flashing Lights (2008), LCD Soundsystem: Drunk Girls (2010), Weezer: Undone (The Sweater Song) (1994), Beastie Boys: Sure Shot (1994), Dinosaur Jr: Feel the Pain (1994), Tenacious D: Wonderboy (2001), Wax-California (1995), Notorious BIG feat 112: Sky’s The Limit (1997), Arcade Fire: The Suburbs (2010), Fatlip: What’s Up Fatlip (2003), REM: Crush With Eyeliner (1995), Sonic Youth-100% (1992), Bjork: It’s Oh So Quiet (1995), Jay-Z and Kanye West: Otis (2011), Ludacris: Get Back (2004), Sonic Youth- The Diamond Sea (1995). Bjork: Triumph of a Heart (2005), Yeah Yeah Yeahs: Y Control (2004)
  2. Michel Gondry (born 1963) The White Stripes: Fell In Love With a Girl (2002), Foo Fighters: Everlong (1997), Daft Punk: Around the World (1997),The White Stripes: The Hardest Button to Button (2003), Steriogram: Walkie Talkie Man (2004), Queens of the Stone Age: No One Knows (2002), The White Stripes: Dead Leaves and Dirty Ground (2002), Bjork: Army of Me (1995), The Chemical Brothers: Go (2015), Kylie Minogue: Come into My World (2002), The Vines: Ride (2004), Gary Jules: Mad World (2004), Radiohead: Knives Out (2001), Kanye West: Heard Em Say (2005), Bjork: Human Behavior (1993), The Chemical Brothers: Got to Keep On (2019), The Chemical Brothers: Let Forever Be (1999), The Rolling Stones: Like a Rolling Stone (1995), Paul McCartney: Dance Tonight (2007), -M-: Grand Petit Con (2019), The White Stripes: The Denial Twist (2005)
  3.  Steve Barron (born 1956) Michael Jackson: Billie Jean (1983), A-Ha: Take on Me (1985), Thomas Dolby: She Blinded Me With Science (1982), Dire Straights: Money For Nothing (1985), Bryan Adams: Run to You (1984), Toto: Rosanna (1982), ZZ Top: Rough Boy (1985), Toto: Africa (1982), Bryan Adams: Summer of ’69 (1984)
  4. Mark Romanek (born 1959)  Nine Inch Nails: Closer (1994), Johnny Cash: Hurt (2003), Michael Jackson feat. Janet Jackson: Scream (1995), Jay-Z: 99 Problems (2004), Fiona Apple: Criminal (1997), Nine Inch Nails: The Perfect Drug (1997), En Vogue: Free Your Mind (1992), Taylor Swift: Shake It Off (2014), Janet Jackson: Got til It’s Gone (1997), Lenny Kravitz: Are You Gonna Go My Way (1993), Jay-Z: The Story of O.J. (2017), Beyonce: Sandcastles (2016), Weezer: El Scorcho (1996), Beck: Devil’s Haircut (1996), Coldplay: Speed of Sound (2005), Red Hot Chili Peppers: Can’t Stop (2003), Justin Timberlake: Can’t Stop the Feeling (2016), Macy Gray: I Try (1999), Audioslave: Cochise (2002), U2: The Miracle (Of Joey Ramone) (2014)
  5.  Hype Williams (born 1970)  2Pac ft Dr. Dre: California Love (1996), Missy Eliot: The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly) (1997), Notorious BIG feat Puff Daddy & Mase: Mo Money Mo Problems (1997), TLC: No Scrubs (1999), Busta Rhymes ft Janet Jackson: What’s It Gonna Be?! (1999), Kanye West: Stronger (2007), Beyonce ft Jay-Z: Drunk in Love (2013), Jay-Z and Alicia Keys: Empire State of Mind, Busta Rhymes: Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Can See (1997), Kanye West: Gold Digger (2005), Nas: Hate Me Now (1999), Craig Mack: Flava in Ya Ear (Remix) (1994), The Notorious BIG: Big Poppa, Warning (1995), Wu-Tang Clan: Wu-Tang Clan Aint Nothing Ta Fuck Wit (1995), Blackstreet: No Diggety (1996), R Kelly: I Believe I Can Fly (1996), Puff Daddy ft Faith Evans & 112: I’ll Be Missing You (1997), Mase: Feel So Good (1997), Dr. Dre: Still D.R.E. (1999), Q-Tip: Vivrant Thing (1999), Jay-Z: Big Pimpin’ (2000), Busta Rhymes: Gimme Some More (1998), LL Cool J: Doin’ It (1996)
  6. David Fincher (born 1962) Madonna: Vogue (1990), George Michael: Freedom! ’90 (1990), Aerosmith: Janie’s Got a Gun (1989), Madonna: Express Yourself (1989), Paula Abdul: Straight Up, Cold Hearted (1989) (1989), Justin Timberlake: Suit & Tie (2013), Jody Whatley: Real Love (1989), Steve Winwood: Roll With It (1988), Billy Idol: Cradle of Love (1990), The Rolling Stones: Love is Strong (1994), The Hooters: Johnny B (1987), Sting: Englishman in New York (1988), The Outfield: All the Love in the World (1985)
  7. Anton Corbijn (born 1955) Nirvana: Heart Shaped Box (1993), Depeche Mode: Personal Jesus (1989), Joy Division: Atmosphere (1988), Arcade Fire: Reflektor (2013), Travis: Re-Offender (2003), The Killers: All These Things That I’ve Done (2005), Metallica: Hero of the Day (1996), U2: One (1992),  Echo & the Bunnymen: Sevens Seas (1984), Metallica: Mama Said (1996), Red Hot Chili Peppers: My Friends (1995), Depeche Mode: Never Let Me Down Again (1987), Depeche Mode: Strangelove ’88 (1988), Depeche Mode: Policy of Truth (1990), Bryan Adams: Have You Ever Really Loved A Woman (1995)
  8.  Samuel Bayer (born 1962) Nirvana: Smells Like Teen Spirit (1991), Blind Melon: No Rain (1992), Smashing Pumpkins: Bullet With Butterfly Wings (1995), The Cranberries: Zombie (1994), Ozzy Osbourne: Mama, I’m Coming Home (1991), Metallica: Until it Sleeps (1996), Sheryl Crow: My Favorite Mistake (1998), The Offspring: Gotta Get Away (1995), Green Day: American Idiot (2004), Blind Melon: Change (1994), Green Day: Wake Me Up When September Ends (2005), Green Day: Boulevard of Broken Dreams (2004), Justin Timberlake: What Goes Around…Comes Around (2007), Maroon 5: Payphone (2012), The Strokes: You Only Live Once (2006)
  9. Nigel Dick (born 1953) Guns N Roses: Sweet Child of Mine, Paradise City (1988), Britney Spears: …Baby One More Time (1998), Oasis: Wonderwall (1995), Britney Spears: Oops!…I Did it Again (2000), Tears for Fears: Everybody Wants to Rule the World (1985), Alice in Chains: Down in a Hole (1993), Guns N Roses: Welcome to the Jungle (1987), Oasis: Champagne Supernova, Don’t Look Back in Anger (1996), Cher: Believe (1998), Band Aid: Do They Know It’s Christmas? (1984), Real McCoy: Another Night (1994)
  10.  Bruce Gowers (born 1940): Queen: Bohemian Rhapsody (1975), Prince: 1999 (1982), Bee Gees: Stayin Alive, How Deep is Your Love (1977), Michael Jackson: Rock With You (1979), Rush: Tom Sawyer (1981), Queen: Somebody to Love (1976), Queen: You’re My Best Friend (1976), Arrested Development: People Everyday (1992), Rod Stewart: Do Ya Think I’m Sexy (1978), John Mellencamp: Jack and Diane, Hurts so Good (1982), Chaka Khan: I’m Every Woman (1978)
  11.  Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris: Red Hot Chili Peppers: Californication (2000), Smashing Pumpkins:  Tonight Tonight (1996), Korn: Freak on a Leash (1999), Smashing Pumpkins: 1979 (1996), Red Hot Chili Peppers: Otherside (2000), Red Hot Chili Peppers: By the Way (2006), Extreme: More Than Words (1991), Oasis: All Around the World (1998), Porno for Pyros: Pets (1993)
  12. Stéphane Sednauoui (born 1963) Red Hot Chili Peppers: Give It Away (1991), Smashing Pumpkins: Today (1993), Alanis Morissette: Ironic (1996), U2: Mysterious Ways (1991), REM: Lotus (1998), Red Hot Chili Peppers: Around the World, Scar Tissue (1999) Bjork: Possibly Maybe (1996), Bjork: Big Time Sensuality (1993), Jamiroquai: Little L (2001), The Black Crowes: Sometimes Salvation (1992), Garbage: Queer (1995), U2: Discotheque (1997), Massive Attack: Sly (1994) Red Hot Chili Peppers: Breaking the Girl (2002), Youssou N’Dour: 7 Seconds (1994)
  13.  Jonathan Glazer (born 1965)  Jamiroquai: Virtual Insanity (1996), Radiohead: Karma Police (1997), Massive Attack: Karmacoma (1995), UNKLE ft Thom Yorke: Rabbit in Your Headlights (1998), Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds: Into My Arms (1997), Radiohead: Street Spirit – Fade Out (1996), Blur: The Universal (1995), Richard Ashcroft: A Song For the Lovers (2000), Massive Attack: Live With Me (2006), The Dead Weather: Treat Me Like Your Mother (2009)
  14.  David Mallet (born 1945) Queen: I Want to Break Free (1984), Billy Idol: White Wedding (1982), Queen and David Bowie: Under Pressure (1981), AC/DC: Thunderstruck (1990), Iron Maiden: The Number of the Beast, Run to the Hills (1982), Joan Jeff & the Blackhearts: Crimson and Clover (1982), David Bowie: Let’s Dance (1983) Ashes to Ashes (1980), Blondie: Call Me (1980), Scorpions: Rock You Like a Hurricane (1984), Def Leppard: Rock of Ages (1983), Heart: What About Love (1985), AC/DC: You Shook Me All Night Long (1986), Blondie: Atomic (1979), David Bowie & Mick Jagger: Dancing in the Street (1985)
  15. Paul Hunter  D’Angelo: Untitled (How Does it Feel) (2000), Marilyn Manson: The Dope Show (1998), The Notorious BIG: Hypnotize (1997), Michael Jackson: You Rock My World (2001), Lenny Kravitz: Fly Away (1998), Puff Daddy: It’s All About the Benjamins (1997), Snoop Dogg ft Pharrell: Drop it Like its Hot (2004), Eminem: The Way I Am (2000), Dr Dre: The Next Episode (1999), Christina Aguilara ft Mýa, Lil’ Kim, and P!nk: Lady Marmalade (2001), Usher: My Way (1997), Puff Daddy ft Mase: Been Around the World (1997), LL Cool J: Phenomenon (1997), Lenny Kravitz: American Woman (1999), Gwen Stefani: Hollaback Girl (2005), Everclear: Father of Mine (1998), Janet Jackson: I Get Lonely (1998)
  16. Mark Pellington (born 1962) Pearl Jam: Jeremy (1992), The Flaming Lips: Do You Realize?? (2002), PM Dawn: Set Adrift on Memory Bliss (1991), Alice in Chains: Rooster (1993), Foo Fighters: Best of You (2005), Whale: Hobo Humpin’ Slobo Babe (1994), Silverchair: Tomorrow (US version) (1994), Nine Inch Nails: We’re In This Together (1999), Public Enemy: Shut Em Down (1992), Leonard Cohen: Dance Me to the End of Love (1984), INXS: Beautiful Girl (1992), Bruce Springsteen: Lonesome Day (2002), Kings of Leon: Wasted Time (2003), Anthrax: Black Lodge (1993), Linkin Park: Final Masquerade (2014), The Fray: How to Save a Life (2005), Jason Mraz: I Won’t Give Up (2012)
  17. Sophie Muller (born 1962): Blur: Song 2 (1997), No Doubt: Don’t Speak (1996), The Killers: Mr. Brightside (2004), Weezer: Say It Isn’t So (1995), Eurythmics: You Have Placed a Chill in My Heart (1988), Maroon 5: This Love (2004), Shakira: Hips Don’t Lie (2006), Kings of Leon: Sex on Fire (2008), Coldplay: Trouble (2000), Rihanna: Stay (2013), Lana Del Rey: Young and Beautiful (2013), Alicia Keys: Girl on Fire (2012), Ellie Goulding: Lights (2011), Selena Gomez: Good for You (2015)
  18.  Jonas Åkerlund (born 1965) The Prodigy: Smack My Bitch Up (1997), Madonna: Ray of Light (1998), Lady Gaga ft Beyonce: Telephone (2010), Jamiroquai: Canned Heat (1999), Metallica: Turn the Page (1998), Lady Gaga: Paparazzi (2009), U2: Beautiful Day (2001), Maroon 5: Moves Like Jagger (2011)
  19.  Stephen R. Johnson (1952-2015) Peter Gabriel: Sledgehammer (1986), Talking Heads: Road to Nowhere (1985), Peter Gabriel: Steam (1992), Dire Straits: Walk of Life (1985), Peter Gabriel: Big Time (1986), Combonation: Girls Like You (1984)
  20.  Russell Mulcahy (born 1953) The Buggles: Video Killed the Radio Star (1979), Duran Duran: Hungry Like the Wolf (1982), Sandau Ballet: True (1983), Def Leppard: Pour Some Sugar on Me (1987), Billy Joel: We Didn’t Start the Fire (1989), Bonnie Tyler: Total Eclipse of the Heart (1983), Rod Stewart: Young Turks (1981), Fleetwood Mac: Gypsy (1982), Duran Duran: Rio (1982), Billy Joel: Allentown (1982)
  21.  Adam Jones (born 1965) Tool: Schism (2001), Stinkfish (1996), Aenema (1997), Sober (1993), Prison Sex (1994), Parabola (2002), Vicarious (2007)
  22.  Andrew Morahan (born 1958)  George Michael: Faith (1987), Guns N’ Roses: November Rain (1992), George Michael: Father Figure (1987), Van Halen: Finish What Ya Started (1988), Wham!: Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go (1984), Pet Shop Boys: West End Girls (1984), Simple Minds: Belfast Child (1989)
  23.  Dave Meyers (born 1872) Missy Eliot: Work It (2002), Kendrick Lamar: Humble (2017), Outkast: Bombs over Bagdad (2000), Billie Eilish: bad guy (2019), Kid Rock: Bawitdaba (1999), Travis Scott: Sicko Mode (2018), Ariana Grande: No Tears Left To Cry (2018), Missy Elliott: Get Ur Freak On (2001), DMX: Party Up in Here (2000), Dido: Thank You (2001), Missy Elliott: Lose Control (2005), Juvenile: Back That Azz Up (1999), Mary J Blige: Family Affair (2001), Outkast: So Fresh So Clean (2001), Jay-Z: Dirt Off Your Shoulder (2004), Rihanna: Where Have You Been (2012)
  24.  Joseph Kahn (born 1972)  Eminem: Without Me (2002), Taylor Swift ft Kendrick Lamar: Bad Blood (2015), Britney Spears: Toxic (2004), Wu-Tang Clan: Protect Ya Neck (The Jump Off) (2000), Backstreet Boys: Everybody (Backstreet’s Back) (1997), D12: Purple Hills (2001), Brandy & Monica: The Boy is Mine (1998), Destiny’s Child: Say My Name (2000), DMX: Who We Be (2001), Taylor Swift: Blank Space (2014), Imagine Dragons: Thunder (2017), Eminem ft Rihanna: Love The Way You Lie (2010), Taylor Swift: Look What You Made Me Do (2017)
  25. Josh Taft Pearl Jam: Alive (1991), Stone Temple Pilots: Plush (1993), A Tribe Called Quest: Award Tour (1993), Pearl Jam: Even Flow (1992), Alice in Chains: Would? (1992), Stone Temple Pilots: Sex Type Thing (1992), Cypress Hill: Insane in the Brain (1993), A Tribe Called Quest: Oh My God, Electric Relaxation (1994), Nas: The World is Yours (1994), Digable Planets: 9th Wonder (1994), 311: Down (1996)


Honorable Mentions: Wayne Isham, Chris Cunningham, F. Gary Gray, Marty Callner, Director X, Jake Scott, Mark Kohr, Dean Karr, Julien Temple, Adam Bernstein, Melina Matsoukas, Kevin Kerslake, Chris Robinson, Maros Siega, Tim Pope, Jim Swaffield, Francis Lawrence, Matt Mahurin, Walter A Stern, Phillip Atwell, Meiert Avis, James Yukich, Howard Greenhalgh, Alex and Martin, Mary Lambert, Peter Christopherson, Benny Boom, Rebecca Blake, Jake Nava, Charles Stone III