David Fincher started as a commercial and music video director working for the likes of Nike, The Rolling Stones, Heineken, George Michael and A Perfect Circle. Prior to his venture in to directing Fincher worked at the effects house, ILM (Industrial Light and Magic); working on films like Return of the Jedi and Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. Fincher would later work for the video production company, Propaganda Films.
After directing the sequel to Alien 3, Fincher moved on to an ambitious crime thriller, Seven, starring Brad Pitt, Morgan Freeman and Kevin Spacey. The film told the story of two police detectives on the hunt to catch a serial killer who is committing murders based on the seven deadly sins. The film is recognized not only for the amazing performance of Morgan Freeman, but for the sustained suspense and shocking ending.
After directing the Michael Douglas and Sean Penn mystery, The Game, Fincher adapted the popular Chuck Palahniuk novel, Fight Club. In this film Fincher worked again with Brad Pitt, who was paired with Edward Norton in the story of a man struggling with his personal demons and insomnia. The layered and stylized film immediately sparked debate (due to the themes and a surprise ending) and went on to become a cult classic.
Fincher followed up Fight Club, with a movie that was smaller in scale but just as intense as his previous work; Panic Room starred Jodie Foster, Forrest Whitaker and a young Kristen Stewart. The film told the story of a mother and daughter hiding in a hidden room during a home invasion. The film was a critical and box office success and cemented Fincher as a master of suspense.
After tackling the infamous and unsolved case of the “Zodiac” murders in the film Zodiac , Fincher moved on to another adaptation, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. The film told the story of a man who ages in reverse; starting as an elderly looking baby and moving backwards from there. Benjamin Button was ambitious in scope (it covers Button across 70 years) as well as being an effects heavy film. The movie marked Fincher’s third film with Brad Pitt and also starred Cate Blanchett and Tarji P. Henson. The film would go on to receive thirteen Academy Awards nominations including Best Picture, Best Director, Actor and Supporting actress.