Joe Dante

Joe Dante photo

Gender: Male

Birth Place: Morristown, New Jersey, USA

Joseph Dante Jr. was born on November 28, 1946 in Morristown, New Jersey, USA and was raised in Parsippany, NJ. He is an American film director, producer, editor, actor, writer and crew member. His father wrote some books on the instructions of playing golf, and he was a professional golf player. Two of his father’s books are Four Magic Moves to Winning Golf, and Stop that Slice. His alternate name is Giuseppe Dantini. He is a protege of former Roger Corman and Steven Spielberg also helped him. He is famous for movies listed below and Masters of Horror (Homecoming), Amazing Stories and the remake of Hawaii Five-O.

Joe Dante had polio when he was seven years old that almost crippled him. He then decided to start drawing and to become a cartoonist rather than being athletic like his parents. He graduated from high school and then went to Philadelphia College of Art. He contributed to Castle of Frankenstein and Famous Monsters of Filmland magazines as a teenager with writings of all kind. He worked for Film Bulletin newspaper as a film critic after graduating Philadelphia College of Art and later became the managing editor of Film Bulletin. He then worked for Roger Corman's New World Pictures as a trailer editor in 1974. He co-directed Hollywood Boulevard with Allan Arkush in 1976 with a budget of about $60,000.

He made one of the company's biggest hits, Piranha in 1977 which was distributed to the world by United Artists. He worked with Steven Spielberg on Twilight Zone and Amblin Productions for Warner Bros. Gremlins (1984). Gremlins became a hit that grossed over $200 million worldwide with its comedic elements and fantastical storyline.

He likes to have the screenwriters on set, but the studios do not normally have the writers stay on set. Joe always casts the writer in a small part of the production so they can be on set.

- The Hole 3D won its inaugural Best 3D Film Award when it premiered at the 2009 Venice Film Festival.
- Nominated by Cable Ace for his direction of Showtime's Runaway Daughters (1994) and HBO's The Second Civil War (1997).

Some directors that Joe Dante said influenced him were Roger Corman, Chuck Jones, James Whale, Frank Tashlin, and Jean Cocteau. He often draws reference to science fiction films from the 1950s because he is a fan of them. He always refers to Warner Brothers cartoons in his movies and always cast Dick Miller as a cameo or main actor. He frequently hires composer Jerry Goldsmith and cast Kevin McCarthy, Ron Perlman , William Schallert and Robert Picardo in most of his movies.

Some movies Joe Dante is famous for are:

1978 - Piranha
1981 - The Howling
1984 - Gremlins
1985 - Explorers
1987 - Innerspace
1989 - The 'Burbs
1990 - Gremlins 2: The New Batch
1993 - Matinee
1997 - The Second Civil War
1998 - Small Soldiers
2003 - Looney Tunes: Back in Action

Some of Joe Dante's favorite movies are:

1935 - The Bride of Frankenstein
1942 - To Be or Not to Be
1955 - The Night of the Hunter
1958 - Touch of Evil
1968 - Once Upon a Time in the West


“What I like in movies especially are movies that do things that you can't do in real life and show you things that you can't see by walking out in the street. And there have been a lot of great movies that show you real life as it is lived and should be lived. But my favorite kind of movies are the ones that show you things that you can't see anywhere but in the movies. And this picture? Believe me, you'll never see this stuff except in the movies”

“We did all kinds of things in trailers to help sell films. We had a famous exploding helicopter shot from one of those Filipino productions that we'd cut in every time a trailer was too dull because that was always exciting“

Director Joe Dante Movies / Films:

Reviewed Movies Directed by Joe Dante