Directors Treat Themselves: 25 Self-References

A Clockwork Orange film still 2“If I’m going to reference another film in my film, why not use something from my past?”.

A thought that many famous film directors have made. It could be out of narcissism or vanity, it could be just a joke, a small comment or a need for a revision of a past work. In any case, self-references are always noticed and celebrated by critics and the audience, so below is a collection of 25 directors who just couldn’t resist referencing their own films.

1. Mel Brooks: Young Frankenstein in Silent Movie

Silent Movie film still

2. Brian De Palma: Murder à la Mod in Blow Out

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3. Lisandro Alonso: Los Muertos in Fantasma

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4. Edgar Wright: Shaun of the Dead in Hot Fuzz

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5. Samuel Fuller: Shock Corridor in The Naked Kiss

The Naked Kiss film still

6. Andrei Tarkovsky: Andrei Rublev in The Mirror

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7. King Vidor: Bardelys the Magnificent in Show People

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8. Vincente Minnelli: The Bad and the Beautiful in Two Weeks in Another Town

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9. Steven Spielberg: Jaws in Jurassic Park

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10. Richard Donner: Ladyhawke in Conspiracy Theory

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11. Roy Del Ruth: Side Show in Taxi!

Taxi film still 5

12. Stanley Kubrick: 2001: A Space Odyssey in A Clockwork Orange

A Clockwork Orange film still 3

13. Im Sang-soo: Tears in A Good Lawyer’s Wife

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14. Fritz Lang: Metropolis in Spione

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15. Jean-Luc Godard: Le Petit Soldat in Pierrot le Fou

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16. Edward F. Cline: The Bank Dick in Never Give a Sucker an Even Break

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17. Clint Eastwood: High Plains Drifter in Breezy

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18. Preston Sturges: The Miracle of Morgan’s Creek in Hail the Conquering Hero

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19. Wes Craven: Summer of Fear in Deadly Blessing

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20. Terry Gilliam: Brazil in The Fisher King

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21. Tobe Hooper: Lifeforce in Invaders from Mars

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22. Brian Trenchard-Smith: The Man from Hong Kong in Dead End Drive-In

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23. Mario Bava: Black Sabbath in Hatchet for the Honeymoon

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24. Bruce Beresford: Don’s Party in Puberty Blues

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25. Abbas Kiarostami: Where is the Friend’s Home? in Life and Nothing More…

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