Joe Dante

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Joe Dante
Dante in 2023
Joseph James Dante Jr.[1]

(1946-11-28) November 28, 1946 (age 77)
Alma mater
Occupation(s)Director, producer, editor, actor
Years active1968–present
SpouseElizabeth Stanley

Joseph James Dante Jr. (/ˈdɑːnt/; born November 28, 1946) is an American filmmaker, producer, editor and actor. His films—notably Gremlins (1984) alongside its sequel, Gremlins 2: The New Batch (1990)—often mix the 1950s-style B movie genre with 1960s radicalism and cartoon comedy.

Dante's output includes the films Piranha (1978), The Howling (1981), Explorers (1985), Innerspace (1987), The 'Burbs (1989), Matinee (1993), Small Soldiers (1998), and Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003). His work for television and cable include the social satire The Second Civil War (1997), episodes of the anthology series Masters of Horror ("Homecoming" and "The Screwfly Solution") and Amazing Stories, as well as Police Squad! and Hawaii Five-0.

Early life[edit]

Dante was born in Morristown, New Jersey, and grew up in nearby Livingston. His father was a professional golfer who encouraged him to play sports; however, Dante was more interested in drawing cartoons and frequenting Saturday matinees at the cinema.[2]

Dante had originally planned on becoming a cartoonist, but was told that it wasn't a real art form and that he should try something else.[2] While attending the Philadelphia College of Art, Dante realized he was more inclined toward filmmaking:[3]

"I was told that cartooning isn't an art form and if I was smart I would take something else. So I took film. This was back in the days when everything was black and white, 16mm, silent – we were essentially making underground art films, so I can't say my filmmaking acumen derived from my teachings at the Philadelphia College of Art. Almost all of it came from the school of Roger Corman"[2]

In his free time as a student, Dante began assembling The Movie Orgy, an epic collection of B movie clips, 16mm films, cartoons, commercials, and trailers that was seamlessly edited together into one 7-hour compilation.[2]



I didn't really learn much about making films, but I did spend as much time as I could at the local grindhouses where I caught up with old movies from the '30s on, most of which I could never have seen elsewhere. When it came time to try actual movie directing, I found I had a wellspring of images and ideas in my head to draw on.

—Joe Dante[3]

After a stint as a film reviewer, Dante began his filmmaking apprenticeship in 1974 when producer Roger Corman offered him a job in the trailer-cutting department at New World Pictures, where he edited the trailers for such films as Cover Girl Models and Amarcord.[4][5] Other established directors such as Francis Ford Coppola, Martin Scorsese and Peter Bogdanovich had already emerged from Corman's de-facto film school.[2]

In 1975, Dante moved up to directing when he collaborated with fellow Corman school alumni Allan Arkush to make the satirical exploitation film Hollywood Boulevard. The film was conceived when Corman made a bet that he could produce a movie within ten days on a budget of only $54,000 (equivalent to $305,766 in 2023).[citation needed] Although producer John Davison reported the budget was approximately $50,000,[6] it was the cheapest made by New World Pictures.[citation needed] The filmmakers achieved this by coming up with a story about a B movie studio which could incorporate footage from other movies that Corman owned.[6]

Two years later, Dante directed Piranha, written by John Sayles. The film was shot in Texas "in a rush" on a budget of $600,000, and was considered quite ambitious for the time and cost.[3] Dante, who was convinced the film would be a disaster, spent a month in the editing room. People came to visit him, but as Dante recalled he was in "such a fog" that he didn't even recognize who they were at first.[7] The film won the attention of Steven Spielberg who, unbeknownst to Dante, prevented Universal from blocking the film's release, convincing them that Piranha was a parody and that it wasn't in competition with Jaws 2.[2]

In 1979, Dante directed some scenes of Rock 'n' Roll High School when Allan Arkush fell ill due to exhaustion, but remains uncredited. Dante also helped plot the premise of the film with Arkush.[8]


Dante again collaborated with John Sayles when he enlisted him to rewrite the previously adapted draft of Gary Brandner's werewolf tale The Howling. Sayles rewrote the script with the same self-aware, satirical tone that he gave Piranha, and his finished script bears only a slight resemblance to Brandner's novel.[9] Dante said that at the time he made The Howling, werewolves were considered by many to be "corny and old hat". His approach was to disguise it as long as possible and make it look like a slasher film — which was a lot more popular at the time — "and then bring in the supernatural elements slowly so that the audience could get acclimated and not immediately reject it as something old-fashioned."[10] The film's special effects, which at the time were considered state-of-the-art, were completed by Rob Bottin after Rick Baker left to work on An American Werewolf in London.

Dante had been previously offered the chance to direct Airplane! by Zucker, Abrahams and Zucker. Although he turned it down, Dante agreed to direct two episodes of their police procedural spoof Police Squad!, which was his first experience shooting something on a studio lot.[11]

It's the movie I'm going to be remembered for. If I get hit by a bus tomorrow, the headline is going to be "Gremlins Director Hit By Bus". I'll never do something that'll outlast that in terms of the public image of who I am – which is fine with me. It's not my favorite movie that I've ever made, but I'm perfectly happy with it and I think it does what it was supposed to do. It's strange that it's outlasted so many other pictures that were much more prestigious at the time. It expresses my personality too, which is the one thing that's the most difficult to get across in an expensive film.

—Joe Dante[12]

Due to their work on The Howling, Dante and producer Michael Finnell received the opportunity to make the film Gremlins by Steven Spielberg.[13] Spielberg also brought Dante on as one of the directors on John Landis' Twilight Zone: The Movie.[11] Dante's segment, a remake of the original Twilight Zone episode "It's a Good Life",[14] features cartoon-style special effects, revolving around a woman played by Kathleen Quinlan who is 'adopted' by an omnipotent boy. Dante also took over editing duties on George Miller's segment of the film, after he left the project feeling repulsed by the news of the fatal helicopter accident.[15] Chris Columbus' original draft of Gremlins went through several rewrites before a shooting script was finalized. According to Dante, it was a gruelling shoot ("The whole thing was so exhausting") and once the design of the gremlins were finalized, the studio's reaction was divisive.[12] The film follows a teenager, played by Zach Galligan, who inadvertently breaks three important rules concerning his new pet and unleashes a horde of malevolently mischievous monsters on a small town. It proved to be one of Dante's biggest hits to date, being the third highest-grossing film of 1984.[16] "I'd never seen a reaction like that," Dante said of the film's first preview. "They thought it was the greatest thing ever and Warner Brothers was I think shocked, frankly, by how popular the picture became."

After the success of Gremlins, Dante took on the offer to direct Explorers, about a group of friends who build a working spacecraft and encounter extraterrestrial life. Dante liked the script, but felt the film needed a better third act. After being denied extra time by Paramount executives, Dante and the film's writer, Eric Luke, then improvised the story whilst filming commenced.[17] In the spring of 1985, Paramount changed the film's initial release date from late August to early July, telling Dante and the editors to stop editing and deliver a shorter rough cut. As a result, about an hour and a half worth of footage was left on the editing room floor. Explorers marked the film debuts of both Ethan Hawke and River Phoenix, and has only grown in its reputation over time, developing a cult following.[18] Dante reflected on the film by saying that he is appreciative of the warm reception it has earned over the years, but continued by saying "the problem is for me is that the movie you'll see is not the movie I wanted to make. It's the movie I got to make up to a certain point and then had to stop. It's hard for me to look at it, cause it's not the film I quite had in mind." The missing and cut scenes are presumably lost, as Dante tried searching for them in recent years.

In the mid-1980s, Dante was offered the script of Innerspace written by Chip Proser, who called it "a rip off of Fantastic Voyage". Dante initially turned the film down until the script was later rewritten as a comedy by Jeffrey Boam. Dante said he had a "wonderful experience" making Innerspace, mainly because of the cast which included actors Dennis Quaid, Martin Short, and Meg Ryan among others. However, after one particular day of filming, Dante recalled that studio executives from Warner Brothers had invited him out to lunch and told him that what he was doing was not funny and described Short as being "not very attractive", wanting to recast the role. While this conversation left him with a lot of anxiety, Dante decided to "plow on" and just make the movie he always intended to make. Despite successful test screenings, the film ended up flopping at the box office in the summer of 1987. Dante said this was because the studio did not know how to promote it and that the original poster failed to include the movie's actors on it.[19]

In 1988, Dante agreed to direct the black comedy The 'Burbs, intrigued by its premise and the blending of real-life situations with elements of the supernatural. Dante and producers Larry Brezner and Michael Finnell agreed that Tom Hanks would be the most suitable actor to portray the married Ray Peterson, a suburban homeowner who tries to introduce excitement into his life by investigating the activities of his mysterious neighbors. Dante referred to Hanks as "the reigning everyman, a guy that everybody can identify with", comparing him to James Stewart. Production on The 'Burbs was filmed in chronological order (due to the 1988 writer's strike[3]) over the course of ten weeks, mainly on the Colonial Street backlot at Universal Studios. "There was a lot of temptation to broaden it and go outside the neighborhood, but it seemed to violate the spirit of the piece," Dante said, "It's almost the kind of thing that could be a stage play except that you could never do on-stage what we've done in this movie."[20]


Dante was asked many times to helm a sequel to Gremlins, due to its financial success. Dante declined, because he saw that story as having a proper ending, and thus a sequel would only be meant to be profitable. The studio decided to proceed without him, approaching various directors and writers. Storylines considered included sending the gremlins to Las Vegas or even into outer space. After those ideas fell through, the studio returned to Dante, who agreed to make the sequel after receiving the rare promise of having complete creative control over the movie as well as a budget tripling that of the original film.[21] Since Chris Columbus was not available to write the sequel's script at the time, Dante brought on screenwriter Charles S. Haas to help plot the film.[22] Dante later claimed it was the film into which he had put the most of his personal influence. He referred to it as "one of the more unconventional studio pictures ever," imagining it as a satire of Gremlins and sequels in general,[23] resulting in a film with several meta-references and self-referential humor. Both Zach Galligan and Phoebe Cates returned to star in the film. It also features several guest stars, including Christopher Lee as a mad scientist. The film was released to theaters in the Summer of 1990 but did not perform as well at the box office as the original.

Charles S. Haas wrote two more films for Dante; one an unproduced script about Chuck Jones' early years at Termite Terrace[24] and the other, Matinee about the Cuban Missile Crisis. In it, John Goodman stars as William Castle-type filmmaker Lawrence Woolsey, who specializes in horror and sci-fi B movies. Originally written by Jerico Stone, Dante said his draft was "quite different than the film that eventually emerged."[25] The film opened in early 1993 and received positive reviews, but failed to turn a profit.

From 1993 to 1994, Dante was attached as the director of The Phantom, developing a draft of the script together with Jeffrey Boam, which was originally tongue-in-cheek in tone. According to Dante, right when the film was to begin shooting, Paramount pulled the plug on the film over its budget. Later, it was put back into production, with the script rewritten under a new director who made it serious, despite the script's humorous tone.[11] Dante ended up with an executive producer credit.

In 1994, Dante directed the television film Runaway Daughters (a loose remake of the 1956 film), that aired as part of the anthology series Rebel Highway which paid homage to 1950s "drive-in classic" B movies by revamping them "with a '90s edge". Dante also directed the 1997 made-for-television film The Second Civil War, a social satire about anti-immigration. The film was allegedly troubled with a "tremendous amount of interference during post-production" by a studio executive at HBO.[4]

When Dante began pre-production work for Small Soldiers, a film about toy action figures who come to life, he was told to make an "edgy picture for teenagers." Later, after the film finished shooting, he was told by the film's sponsors to soften it as a "kiddie picture" and as a result, several of the action and explosion scenes were edited out at his behest.[11] Dante also claimed there were 12 uncredited writers who did work on the film over the course of five years.[4] When released in 1998, it received mixed reviews and was a moderate box office success.


Dante directed the 2003 live-action/animation hybrid Looney Tunes: Back in Action.[26] The project was developed several other times before eventually being offered to Dante. He agreed to direct the film to pay tribute to his idol Chuck Jones, and as somewhat of a placeholder for his unmade biographical comedy Termite Terrace. He and screenwriter Larry Doyle reportedly wanted the film to be the "anti-Space Jam" as Dante disliked how that film represented the Looney Tunes brand and personalities. While feeling as though they had both managed to preserve the original personalities of the characters, the film's opening, middle and ending are different from what Dante initially envisioned.[11] Dante stated that he practically had no creative freedom on the project, dubbing the experience as "the longest year and a half of my life." According to Dante, the studio executives grew tired of the film's jokes and wanted them to be changed. 25 gag writers were then brought in to try to write jokes that were short enough to fit into an animated character's mouth. Despite this, Doyle remained the film's only credited writer.[27]

Following the disastrous experience of working on Looney Tunes: Back in Action, Dante took a brief hiatus from movies, instead returning to television, directing two episodes of the horror anthology series Masters of Horror.[28]

In 2007, Dante launched the web series Trailers from Hell,[29] which provides commentary by directors, producers and screenwriters on trailers for classic and cult movies. Dante also actively contributes to the website.[30]

Dante and Elizabeth Stanley attending the 66th annual Venice International Film Festival in 2009

Dante returned to feature films several years later in 2009 with the independent 3D horror comedy The Hole, which received the Premio Persol award at the Venice Film Festival.[31] Dante cited Dial M for Murder, Kill, Baby, Kill, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and Killer Klowns from Outer Space as influences on the film.[32]

With Roger Corman producing, Dante directed the interactive web series Splatter for Netflix. The series stars Corey Feldman as a rock star seeking revenge on those he thinks have wronged him.[33]


From 2011 to 2017, Dante returned each season to direct an episode of the Hawaii Five-0 reboot, which he joked was "to get the rent paid."[10]

Subsequently, Dante directed Anton Yelchin and Ashley Greene in Burying the Ex, adapted from Alan Trezza's 2008 short film. Principal photography ran through November–December 2013. The film follows a horror film buff whose controlling girlfriend suddenly dies in a freak accident but when he tries to move on with his life along with his new partner, he discovers that his ex has come back from the dead in the form of a zombie. It was selected to be screened out of competition at the 71st Venice International Film Festival,[34][35] and was released theatrically in 2015.

For years, Dante has tried to make a biopic about his mentor Roger Corman and the making of his 1967 film The Trip, but has struggled to gather funding for it. Titled The Man with Kaleidoscope Eyes, the film went through several permutations over the years, including one starring Colin Firth as Corman. In October 2016, Dante directed a live table-reading of the film's script at the Vista Theatre in Los Angeles, which starred Bill Hader as Corman, Jason Ritter as Peter Fonda and Ethan Embry as Jack Nicholson.[36][37] Corman himself is also slated to appear in the film's ending in a cameo role, which was reported to already have been shot in case Corman died before the film went into production.[38] In 2022, the film's script was adapted and published in the form of a graphic novel.[39] The film has been in its development stage for several years at SpectreVision.

Dante directed a segment of the 2018 horror anthology film Nightmare Cinema starring Mickey Rourke, which also featured shorts directed by Alejandro Brugués, Mick Garris, Ryūhei Kitamura, and David Slade.[40] The same month of its release, Dante launched his own weekly podcast The Movies That Made Me, with screenwriter Josh Olson as his co-host, where filmmakers and entertainers are brought on to discuss the movies that inspired them.[41][42]


In 2020, it was announced that Dante would be returning to the world of Gremlins serving as a consultant on the HBO Max prequel series Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai.[43]

In 2024, it was announced that Dante would direct Little Shop of Halloween Horrors, a reboot of Roger Corman's The Little Shop of Horrors, to be produced by Corman alongside Brad Krevoy, CEO of the Motion Picture Corporation of America, and written by Charles S. Haas.[44]

Unrealized projects[edit]

Year Title and description Ref.
1970s Jaws: 3, People: 0, an early attempt of another Jaws sequel pitched as a spoof [45][46]
1980s Something Wicked This Way Comes [47]
Halloween III: Season of the Witch [48][49][50]
The Philadelphia Experiment [51]
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers [52]
An early attempt of a Batman film that would have starred John Lithgow as the Joker [53][54][50]
The Good, the Bad and the Ugly 2, a proposed sequel to the 1966 film [55]
A remake of the 1954 film Creature from the Black Lagoon [56]
Little Man Tate [57]
1990s Jurassic Park [58][50]
A contemporary-set film adaptation of Jack London's novel The Sea-Wolf starring Tom Hanks [59]
Termite Terrace, a biopic about Warner Bros. animator Chuck Jones written by Charles S. Haas [60][24]
Milk Money [61][62]
The Brink, a thriller written by Nicholas Seldon and Robert Skotak set in the world of virtual reality [63]
An early attempt of The Mummy remake written by John Sayles set in contemporary times [64][65][4]
The Phantom [66][11]
Cat and Mouse, retitled from Rupert and Murdoch, a live-action/animated comedy [67]
My Favorite Martian starring Martin Short [68]
A live-action film adaptation of the cartoon series The Jetsons [69]
Intolerable Cruelty starring Jeremy Irons and Heather Locklear [70]
Sacred Estates, a black comedy written by David Dean Bottrell [71]
A remake of the 1946 film noir Crack-Up [72]
The Sixth Day [73]
2000s Godzilla Reborn, a sequel to Godzilla 2000 written by Michael Schlesinger [74]
Mindhunters [75]
The Wylde Bunch, a TV series written by John Sayles about a fictional 1970s low-budget film producer [76]
The Man with Kaleidoscope Eyes, a biopic written by Tim Lucas, Charlie Largent, Michael Almereyda and James Robison centering on Roger Corman's making of The Trip [77][36][37]
A film adaptation of Tom Holt's novel Expecting Someone Taller [78]
Bat Out of Hell, an indie horror film written by Drew McWeeny and Scott Swan about airplane hijackers who confront monstrous cargo [79][80]
2010s Ombra Amore, retitled from Monster Love, a horror-comedy written by Greg Pak about a werewolf and a vampire who fall in love [81][82][83]
Fear Paris, retitled from Paris, I'll Kill You, a horror anthology film with segments directed by Dante, Xavier Gens and Timo Vuorensola [84][85][86]
Hart's Location, an independent drama written by Ashley Reed starring Bruce Dern, Laura Dern and Diane Ladd [87][88]
O2, a sci-fi thriller written by Ronnie Christensen [89]
Air Disturbance, a horror thriller written by Jeremy Sklar starring Robert Englund and Dylan Walsh [90]
A film adaptation of M. R. James' short story "Casting the Runes" starring Simon Pegg [91]
Labirintus, a supernatural thriller written by Alan Campbell starring Mark Webber, Rachel Hurd-Wood and Lorànt Deutsch [92][93][94]
Polybius, an adventure-thriller written by Barry Stiglets [95]

Dante has also turned down the opportunities to direct Humanoids from the Deep (1980),[96] Airplane! (1980),[11] The Flintstones (1994),[94] Casper (1995),[4] and The World Is Not Enough (1999).[97][50]


Dante has cited Roger Corman, Chuck Jones, Frank Tashlin, Ernst Lubitsch, Mario Bava, James Whale and Jean Cocteau among his major influences.[98][99][3]

Some of Dante's favorite films include Ernst Lubitsch's To Be or Not to Be (1942), Sergio Leone's Once Upon a Time in the West (1968), Orson Welles' Touch of Evil (1958), Charles Laughton's The Night of the Hunter (1955) and James Whale's Bride of Frankenstein (1935).[100] He also loves the 1941 comedy Hellzapoppin', a film from which he frequently steals gags.[22]

The director previously named his top five horror picks as The Innocents, Rosemary's Baby, The Old Dark House, Blood and Black Lace and The Black Cat.[101]


The moving image collection of Joe Dante and Jon Davison is held at the Academy Film Archive. The joint collection includes feature films, pre-production elements, and theatrical trailer reels.[102]



Year Title Director Editor Notes
1976 Hollywood Boulevard Yes Yes Co-directed with Allan Arkush
1977 Grand Theft Auto No Yes
1978 Piranha Yes Yes
1979 Rock 'n' Roll High School Uncredited No Directed some scenes, also story co-writer
1981 The Howling Yes Yes
1983 Twilight Zone: The Movie Partial Uncredited Segment: "It's a Good Life"
1984 Gremlins Yes No
1985 Explorers Yes No
1987 Innerspace Yes No
Amazon Women on the Moon Partial No Segments: "Hairlooming", "Bullshit or Not", "Critics' Corner", "Roast Your Loved
One", "French Ventriloquist's Dummy" and "Reckless Youth"
1989 The 'Burbs Yes No
1990 Gremlins 2: The New Batch Yes No
1993 Matinee Yes No
1998 Small Soldiers Yes No
2003 Looney Tunes: Back in Action Yes No
2006 Trapped Ashes Partial No "Wraparound" segments
2009 The Hole Yes No
2014 Burying the Ex Yes No
2018 Nightmare Cinema Partial No Segment: "Mirari"
TBA Little Shop of Halloween Horrors Yes No

Executive producer


Year(s) Title Director Producer Notes
1982 Police Squad! Yes No Episode: "Ring of Fear" (E2)
Yes No Episode: "Testimony of Evil" (E6)
1985 The Twilight Zone Yes No Episode: "The Shadow Man" (S1 E10a)
1986 Amazing Stories Yes No Episode: "Boo!" (S1 E17)
Yes No Episode: "The Greibble" (S2 E6)
1991-1992 Eerie, Indiana Yes No Episode: "Forever Ware" (S1 E1)
Yes No Episode: "The Retainer" (S1 E2)
Yes No Episode: "The Losers" (S1 E4)
Yes No Episode: "Heart on a Chain" (S1 E7)
Yes No Episode: "The Hole in the Head Gang" (S1 E13)
1994 Flesh and Blood: The Hammer Heritage of Horror No Associate Made-for-television documentary
Runaway Daughters Yes No Made-for-television film
1995 Picture Windows Yes No Episode: "Lightning" (E4)
1997 The Second Civil War Yes No Made-for-television film
1998 The Warlord: Battle for the Galaxy Yes Executive Made-for-television film
2001 Night Visions Yes No Episode: "Quiet Please" (E3b)
Yes No Episode: "The Occupant" (E6b)
2002-2003 Jeremiah No Executive
2005-2006 Masters of Horror Yes No Episode: "Homecoming" (S1 E6)
Yes No Episode: "The Screwfly Solution" (S2 E7)
2007–present Trailers from Hell No Yes
2007 CSI: NY Yes No Episode: "Boo" (S4 E6)
2011-2017 Hawaii Five-0 Yes No Episode: "Sacred Bones" (S2 E7)
Yes No Episode: "The Promise" (S3 E20)
Yes No Episode: "Fish Out of Water" (S4 E2)
Yes No Episode: "In Deep" (S4 E7)
Yes No Episode: "The Last Break" (S5 E3)
Yes No Episode: "Unmasked" (S5 E6)
Yes No Episode: "Embers" (S5 E16)
Yes No Episode: "The Chilling Storm Is on the Mountains" (S6 E3)
Yes No Episode: "Monsters" (S6 E6)
Yes No Episode: "The Deal" (S7 E12)
2014 Witches of East End Yes No Episode: "When a Mandragora Loves a Woman" (S2 E6)
Yes No Episode: "Poe Way Out" (S2 E11)
2015-2016 Salem Yes No Episode: "The Beckoning Fair One" (S2 E7)
Yes No Episode: "Night's Black Agents" (S3 E4)
2016 Legends of Tomorrow Yes No Episode: "Night of the Hawk" (S1 E8)
MacGyver Yes No Episode: "Wire Cutter" (S1 E4)


Year Title Notes
1968 The Movie Orgy Compilation of pre-existing clips
1994 The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror Theme park pre-show film
2003 Haunted Lighthouse Short 4D film
2009 Splatter Interactive web series

Cameo and documentary appearances[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1973 Submersion of Japan Unknown U.S. version only
1976 Hollywood Boulevard Party Waiter Uncredited
Cannonball Kid
1978 Piranha Scuba Diver #2 Uncredited
1979 Rock 'n' Roll High School Riot Cop with Sunglasses
1982 A Time to Die Bodyguard
Eating Raoul Busboy Uncredited
1985 The Fantasy Film Worlds of George Pal Himself
1987 Innerspace Vectorscope Employee Uncredited
1990 Gremlins 2: The New Batch Director
1991 Oscar Face on the Cutting Room Floor
1992 Sleepwalkers Lab Assistant
The Magical World of Chuck Jones Himself
1994 The Silence of the Hams Dying Man
Beverly Hills Cop III Jailer
A Century of Cinema Himself
2002 Cinerama Adventure
2004 Edgar G. Ulmer: The Man Off-Screen
The Cutting Edge: The Magic of Movie Editing
2006 Coming Attractions: The History of the Movie Trailer
2007 Famous Monster: Forrest J. Ackerman
To My Great Chagrin: The Unbelievable Story of Brother Theodore
Spine Tingler! The William Castle Story
2009 Nightmares in Red, White and Blue
2010 American Grindhouse
Machete Maidens Unleashed!
The Man Who Saw Frankenstein Cry
2011 Corman's World: Exploits of a Hollywood Rebel
The Legend of Ivan Tors
Ray Harryhausen: Special Effects Titan
2012 The Butterfly Room Taxi Driver
Beast Wishes Himself
The AckerMonster Chronicles!
Trailer War
2013 A Fuller Life
Clawing! A Journey Through the Spanish Horror
2014 That Guy Dick Miller
Out of Print
2015 Eaten Alive! The Rise and Fall of the Italian Cannibal Film
Tales of Halloween Professor Milo Gottlieb Segment: "Bad Seed"
Creature Designers: The Frankenstein Complex Himself
2016 24x36: A Movie About Movie Posters
Long Live the King
Unspeakable Horrors: The Plan 9 Conspiracy
2017 King Cohen
Sad Hill Unearthed
2018 Hammer Horror: The Warner Bros Years
2019 Love, Antosha
Making Apes: The Artists Who Changed Film
Phil Tippett: Mad Dreams and Monsters
In Search of Darkness
2020 Frankenstein and the Two Faces of Eve
Skin: A History of Nudity in the Movies
In Search of Darkness: Part II
Tales of the Uncanny
The Birth of Hammer Horror
2021 Boris Karloff: The Man Behind the Monster
2022 Blood, Guts and Sunshine
In Search of Tomorrow
Razzennest Narrator
In Search of Darkness: Part III Himself
2023 Sharksploitation


  1. ^ "Full text of "Commencement program, 1968"". Philadelphia College of Art. June 10, 1968. Retrieved August 5, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Joe Dante interview: Meet a matinee idol". The Scotsman. June 18, 2009. Retrieved March 13, 2023.
  3. ^ a b c d e "A Career-Spanning Conversation with Joe Dante". Fangoria. Archived from the original on October 13, 2009.
  4. ^ a b c d e Klein, Joshua (November 29, 2000). "Joe Dante - The A.V. Club". The A.V. Club. Archived from the original on October 11, 2007. Retrieved February 18, 2023.
  5. ^ Levy, Rob (November 8, 2012). "A Conversation With Joe Dante". Retrieved April 19, 2023.
  6. ^ a b "AFI|Catalog - Hollywood Boulevard". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. American Film Institute. Retrieved March 8, 2023.
  7. ^ Cairns, David (July 6, 2009). ""I want to give you a piece of my mind": Interview with Joe Dante (Part 1)". Mubi. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  8. ^ Sherman, Craig (July 1, 2001). "Take Three: classic Corman film, examined". ArtsEditor. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  9. ^ Anderson, Jeffrey M. (September 30, 2003). "Howl Play: Interview with Joe Dante". Combustible Celluloid. Retrieved August 5, 2016.
  10. ^ a b Brian, Truitt (June 17, 2013). "Joe Dante looks back on the werewolves of 'The Howling'". USA Today. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g Brew, Simon (February 21, 2008). "The Den of Geek interview: Joe Dante". Den of Geek. Retrieved May 20, 2023.
  12. ^ a b "Joe Dante on why Gremlins is the movie he'll be remembered for". Little White Lies. December 24, 2017. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  13. ^ Dante, Joe (2002). Steven Spielberg presents Gremlins Special edition audio commentary (DVD). Warner Home Video.
  14. ^ Alexander, Chris (November 5, 2015). "Interview: Joe Dante Reflects on '80's Twilight Zone Episode, 'The Shadow Man'".
  15. ^ Hamad, Marwa (October 19, 2020). "Deadliest horror movies eve made: Films surrounded by real-life death". Hollywood — Gulf News. Retrieved June 3, 2023.
  16. ^ "1984 Domestic Grosses". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved April 28, 2020.
  17. ^ Joe Dante speaks about Explorers at the New Beverly - Pt 1/2 on YouTube
  18. ^ "The Top 10 Cult Films of the 80s". Archived from the original on July 6, 2011. Retrieved February 28, 2011.
  19. ^ "Joe Dante Talks About the Making of 'Innerspace' at New Beverly Cinema". The Ultimate Rabbit. September 1, 2019. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  20. ^ Pfeiffer, Lee; Lewis, Michael (1996). The Films of Tom Hanks. Citadel Film. New York: Citadel Press. ISBN 0806517174.
  21. ^ DVD commentary; Special edition (2002). Steven Spielberg presents Gremlins. (DVD). Warner Home Video.
  22. ^ a b Buss, Andrew (June 15, 2020). "An Oral History of Gremlins 2: The New Batch". Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  23. ^ The unforgettable satire: How Gremlins 2 made a mockery of Hollywood sequels – The Independent
  24. ^ a b Fischer, William (July 22, 2021). "Before 'Space Jam', There Was 'Termite Terrace' — Joe Dante's Unmade Tribute to 'Looney Tunes'". Collider. Retrieved August 25, 2022.
  25. ^ Erickson, Glenn (May 11, 2010). "Joe Dante interviewed on the DVD release of Matinee". DVDtalk. Retrieved March 12, 2022.
  26. ^ "Artist Bob Camp recalls the ill-fated "Space Jam 2"". Animated Views. November 30, 2012. Retrieved June 18, 2014.
  27. ^ Sachs, Ben (August 8, 2012). "The orgiast: an interview with Joe Dante (part one)". Chicago Reader. Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  28. ^ Kirkland, Bruce (August 11, 2006). "Masters of misery". Calgary Sun.
  29. ^ "Joe Dante presents Trailers From Hell". Cinefantastique. July 3, 2020.
  30. ^ "Gurus: Joe Dante". Trailers from Hell. Archived from the original on May 17, 2013.
  31. ^ Vivarelli, Nick (September 14, 2009). "'Hole' wins Venice 3-D film prize: Dante horror pic nabs first ever Premio Persol". Variety.
  32. ^ Wright, Benjamin (September 28, 2012). "Exclusive: Joe Dante Reveals The 4 Films That Influenced 'The Hole'". IndieWire. Retrieved March 8, 2023.
  33. ^ "Netflix's Splatter Launching on October 29th". DreadCentral. May 23, 2012.
  34. ^ "International competition of feature films". Venice. Archived from the original on July 28, 2014. Retrieved August 10, 2014.
  35. ^ "Venice Film Festival Lineup Announced". Deadline Hollywood. July 24, 2014. Retrieved August 10, 2014.
  36. ^ a b Olsen, Mark (October 12, 2016). "Bill Hader to play Roger Corman in a reading of 'The Man With Kaleidoscope Eyes'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  37. ^ a b Greene, Steve (October 13, 2016). "The Man With Kaleidoscope Eyes' Live Read: Bill Hader is the Roger Corman the World Needs: Joe Dante's decade-in-development biopic finally got the audience it deserved, thanks to a quality cast and an unbeatable atmosphere". IndieWire. Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  38. ^ Evry, Max (October 30, 2019). "Exclusive: Roger Corman Biopic Has Already Shot a Corman Cameo". Retrieved March 12, 2023.
  39. ^ "The Man With Kaleidoscope Eyes: The Greatest Film Never Made?". August 23, 2022.
  40. ^ Boucher, Geoff (May 24, 2019). "'Nightmare Cinema': Horror Directors Unite For Anthology & New Screening Series". Deadline. Retrieved June 26, 2019.
  41. ^ "The Movies That Made Me".
  42. ^ "The Movies That Made Me". June 13, 2023.
  43. ^ Bui, Hoai-Tran (February 18, 2020). "'Gremlins' Director Joe Dante Will Consult on HBO Max's Animated 'Gremlins: Secrets of the Mogwai' Series". /Film.
  44. ^ Grobar, Matt (March 14, 2024). "Joe Dante, Roger Corman & Brad Krevoy Team On 'Little Shop Of Halloween Horrors'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved March 15, 2024.
  45. ^ Larson, Ryan (March 5, 2017). "The Jaws That Never Was: Jaws 3, People 0". Diabolique Magazine. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  46. ^ Dursin, Andy (July 3, 2003). "Aisle Seat – Fourth of July Edition". Film Score Monthly. Archived from the original on May 4, 2008.
  47. ^ Jax (May 7, 2022). "FULL INTERVIEW - Ep 105 - JOE DANTE - "What's Under the Bed?" /Piranha, The Howling, Gremlins, Burbs" (video). YouTube. What's Under the Bed?.
  48. ^ "Halloween III: Season of the Witch". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved December 6, 2021.
  49. ^ "10 Killer Facts About Halloween III: Season of the Witch". MovieWeb. October 12, 2018. Retrieved December 6, 2021.
  50. ^ a b c d Gilchrist, Todd (September 3, 2022). "How director Joe Dante would have made Jurassic Park" (video). YouTube. The A.V. Club. Retrieved November 27, 2023.
  51. ^ "'The Philadelphia Experiment' Only Partly Succeeds – Movie Review". The Morning Call. August 25, 1984. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  52. ^ Assip, Mike (January 6, 2017). "Exclusive Interview: Dennis Etchison On His Unmade Halloween 4 & The Ghosts Of The Lost River Drive-In". Retrieved April 14, 2017.
  53. ^ Hall, Jacob (September 14, 2016). "Joe Dante Could Have Directed A Batman Movie With John Lithgow As The Joker". /Film. Retrieved August 24, 2022.
  54. ^ Davis, Edward (August 31, 2022). "Joe Dante Talks Almost Making The Original 'Batman' Film & How He Wanted John Lithgow To Play The Joker". Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  55. ^ Cotter, Padraig (January 30, 2022). "How The Good, The Bad & The Ugly 2 Would've Brought Back Clint Eastwood". Screen Rant. Retrieved October 4, 2023.
  56. ^ Lambie, Ryan (January 16, 2017). "Whatever Happened to John Carpenter's Creature From The Black Lagoon?". Den of Geek. Retrieved December 19, 2023.
  57. ^ Klady, Leonard (August 6, 1989). "Jodie Foster is about to sign a..." Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  58. ^ McBride, Joseph (1997). Steven Spielberg. Faber and Faber. pp. 416–9. ISBN 0-571-19177-0.
  59. ^ Evry, Max (June 21, 2019). "CS Interview: Director Joe Dante on Nightmare Cinema & More!". Retrieved August 25, 2022.
  60. ^ Frook, John Evan (December 10, 1992). "Henson leaving Warners". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  61. ^ Eller, Claudia (November 12, 1992). "Par in 'Money' as DDLC riled". Variety. Retrieved September 25, 2023.
  62. ^ Marx, Andy (February 4, 1993). "'Milk Money' makes change". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  63. ^ Frook, John Evan (March 31, 1993). "U on 'Brink' of virtual reality". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  64. ^ O'Steen, Kathleen (November 3, 1993). "Sayles wrapped up in 'Mummy'". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  65. ^ Hobson, Louis B (May 1, 1999). "Universal rolls out new, improved Mummy". Calgary Sun.
  66. ^ Archerd, Amy (October 20, 1994). "'Phantom' pulls disappearing act". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  67. ^ "UPI Arts & Entertainment Hollywood Shorts 'Gump' pump". UPI. August 1, 1994. Retrieved April 15, 2023.
  68. ^ Johnson, Ted (April 30, 1997). "Lloyd gets green for 'Martian'". Variety. Retrieved June 30, 2021.
  69. ^ Michael, Dennis (June 11, 1996). "CNN - The Hollywood Minute - June 10, 1996". CNN. Retrieved September 25, 2023.
  70. ^ Fleming, Michael (October 22, 2000). "It's 'Cruelty' for Demme". Variety. Retrieved September 25, 2023.
  71. ^ Cox, Dan (January 19, 1998). "Dante helms 'Estates' for indie Royal". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  72. ^ Carver, Benedict (May 17, 1998). "RKO, Quadra pact". Variety. Retrieved November 27, 2023.
  73. ^ Cox, Dan (January 12, 1999). "Dante's 'Day' at Phoenix". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  74. ^ Ryfle, Steve. "THE GODZILLA SEQUEL THAT WASN'T". Scifi Japan. Retrieved December 13, 2023.
  75. ^ B., Scott (May 9, 2001). "Joe Dante in Negotiations for Mindhunters". IGN. Retrieved November 19, 2023.
  76. ^ Klinger, Gabe (2022). "Joe Dante in conversation with Gabe Klinger". Metrograph.
  77. ^ Pfeiffer, Lee (June 28, 2015). "Exclusive: Joe Dante Discusses "Burying the Ex" and the Films That Influenced His Career". CinemaRetro. Retrieved March 13, 2023. I wouldn't say toying... I'd say slogging, trying to get somebody to finance the movie for about the last ten years. But I haven't given up and I still think it's a great project and we're looking at all sorts of alternate ways of getting it done. It's a funny movie about Roger doing "The Trip". Everything in it is true, which makes it even funnier. We came within a hair of making it twice. I think if we can get that close twice, we can get that close again.
  78. ^ Mitchell, Wendy (February 11, 2007). "Joe Dante gets Sayles, Scorsese on board for Corman feature". Screen Daily. Retrieved January 6, 2024.
  79. ^ McNary, Dave (May 14, 2008). "Joe Dante to direct 'Bat Out of Hell'". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  80. ^ Swart, Sharon (May 15, 2008). "Dante takes turn at 'Bat Out of Hell'". Variety. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  81. ^ Han, Angie (February 14, 2010). "Joe Dante To Direct Vampire/Werewolf Comedy 'Monster Love'". /Film. Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  82. ^ Anderson, Ariston (October 6, 2014). "'Gremlins' Director Brings Vampire, Werewolf Flick to Rome Co-Production Market". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  83. ^ Vivarelli, Nick (October 22, 2014). "Rome Fest Business Street Mart Promps Biz Burst". Variety. Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  84. ^ Roxborough, Scott (October 28, 2010). "Joe Dante, Xavier Gens Join Horror Omnibus 'Paris I'll Kill You'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved December 13, 2023.
  85. ^ Wright, Benjamin (September 22, 2012). "Joe Dante Talks Making 'The Hole' & Updates Status On Future Films 'Monster Love,' 'Paris, I'll Kill You' & More". Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  86. ^ Lussier, Germain (February 4, 2014). "'Fear Paris' Teaser: A Horror Anthology From Joe Dante, Xavier Gens And Timo Vuorensola". /Film. Retrieved August 27, 2022.
  87. ^ Friedman, Roger (June 2, 2011). "Godfather Director Coppola: Part of Next Movie is Spoken in Rhyme". Showbiz411. Retrieved January 19, 2024. Dern's next outing will be "Hart's Location" with real life actress daughter Laura Dern, and her mother–Bruce's ex–the great Diane Ladd. Last fall the trio was the first family, Dern notes, to receive their Hollywood Walk of Fame stars all together. Joe Dante, Dern says, will direct "Hart's." It's a project that's been in the works for about five years, but now it seems like it may take off.
  88. ^ MW Staff (October 19, 2007). "Bruce Dern Recruits His Family for Hart's Location". MovieWeb. Retrieved January 19, 2024.
  89. ^ Kay, Jeremy (November 6, 2011). "Magnet Media attracts Joe Dante to direct O2". Screen Daily. Retrieved January 6, 2024.
  90. ^ Cunliffe, Jack (November 5, 2012). "'Gremlins' Director Joe Dante Incurs 'Air Disturbance' With Robert Englund & More For Next Thriller". The Film Stage. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  91. ^ Guidry, Ken (May 9, 2013). "Simon Pegg & Joe Dante Teaming Up For Ghost Story 'Casting The Runes'". IndieWire. Retrieved January 19, 2024.
  92. ^ Barraclough, Leo (October 20, 2015). "Joe Dante to Direct Supernatural Thriller 'Labirintus'". Variety. Retrieved August 27, 2022.
  93. ^ Barraclough, Leo (March 26, 2016). "Joe Dante's Chiller 'Labirintus' to Star Mark Webber, Rachel Hurd-Wood, Lorant Deutsch (EXCLUSIVE)". Variety. Retrieved September 25, 2023.
  94. ^ a b Schultz, Ian (September 11, 2016). "Interview with Joe Dante". Psychotronic Cinema. Retrieved December 18, 2023.
  95. ^ Ford, Rebecca (January 19, 2017). "Sundance: Artimage Entertainment, Grey Hawk Productions Ink Development Fund Pact (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved January 19, 2024.
  96. ^ Koetting, Christopher T. (2009). Mind Warp!: The Fantastic True Story of Roger Corman's New World Pictures. Hemlock Books. pp. 175–176. ISBN 978-1936168422.
  97. ^ Sherlock, Ben (October 9, 2021). "007: 7 Directors Who Almost Helmed A Bond Movie (& 8 Who Should)". Screen Rant. Retrieved February 17, 2023.
  98. ^ Vestby, Ethan (June 18, 2015). "Joe Dante Talks Returning to His Roots With 'Burying the Ex' and Wide-Ranging Influences". The Film Stage. Retrieved February 19, 2023.
  99. ^ King, Susan (March 13, 2008). "Horrormeister Mario Bava gets a bloody thorough retrospective". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 19, 2023.
  100. ^ Adams, Michael (August 23, 2010). "FIVE FAVORITE FILMS WITH JOE DANTE". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved February 18, 2023.
  101. ^ Fujitani, Ryan (October 24, 2017). "JOE DANTE'S FIVE FAVORITE HORROR FILMS". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved February 18, 2023.
  102. ^ "Joe Dante and Jon Davison Collection". Academy Film Archive.


  • Nil Baskar, Gabe Klinger (Ed.): Joe Dante, FilmmuseumSynemaPublikationen Vol. 19, Vienna: SYNEMA - Gesellschaft für Film und Medien, 2013, ISBN 978-3-901644-52-8

External links[edit]