[[caption-width-right:300:P.T Anderson will not take your shit. [[KubrickStare His eyes]] and [[TheUnsmile mild smirk]] say so.]]

+ Creator/RobertAltman, Creator/MartinScorsese, Creator/StanleyKubrick, Creator/OrsonWelles, Jonathan Demme, Max Ophüls ]

Paul Thomas Anderson (more commonly known as P.T. Anderson), is an American filmmaker who has written and directed seven films, including ''Film/BoogieNights'', ''Film/{{Magnolia}}'', ''Film/PunchDrunkLove'' and ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood''.

Anderson has been said to belong to the "VCR Generation" of filmmakers, grouped with directors such as Creator/QuentinTarantino, Creator/RichardLinklater and Creator/KevinSmith, and described as filmmakers whose careers were founded not upon film school training, but from an enthusiastic love of movies.

If Creator/RobertAltman and Creator/MartinScorsese had [[CrackPairing made sweet, passionate love]] and Creator/StanleyKubrick was the godfather, P.T. Anderson would have been the fruit of their [[NoYay priapic loins]].

Awful mental pictures aside, his real father was comedian and voiceover artist Ernie Anderson, aka Creator/{{Ghoulardi}}. His life partner is Creator/MayaRudolph, and they have four children together.

Also known for working with composers named after some variation of "John".

Not to be confused with Creator/PaulWSAnderson, although both have gone by merely Paul Anderson before, or with science fiction author P'''o'''ul Anderson.
* ''Film/HardEight'' (1996)
* ''Film/BoogieNights'' (1997)
* ''Film/{{Magnolia}}'' (1999)
* ''Film/PunchDrunkLove'' (2002)
* ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood'' (2007)
* ''Film/TheMaster'' (2012)
* ''Film/InherentVice'' (2014)
* ''Junjun'' (2015) [[note]] Anderson's first documentary about his composer from ''There Will Be Blood'' onwards, [[Music/{{Radiohead}} Jonny Greenwood]] recording his new album in UsefulNotes/{{India}} with Israeli composer Shye Ben Tzur and local musicians at the [[https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mehrangarh_Fort Mehrangarh Fort]] in Rajasthan.
!!P.T. Anderson and his movies provide examples of:
* AllMenArePerverts: Sexual voyeurism in ''Boogie Nights'', a call to a phone sex line in ''Punch-Drunk Love'', etc. But ''The Master'', with its severely sex-addicted main character, takes the cake.
* {{Angrish}}: Characters often get so flustered that they resort to inarticulate yelling.
* AuteurLicense: Gained one after ''Film/BoogieNights'' and kept it ever since.
* BerserkButton: Apparently cancer jokes are this, as his father died of it. He has said that Creator/DavidFincher [[NeverLiveItDown should've gotten cancer simply for the jokes about it in]] ''Film/FightClub''.
* BlackComedy: We're talking no-light-escaping, blacker-than-death comedy.
* ChurchOfHappyology: His film ''Film/TheMaster'' sounds suspiciously like a Happyology concept: A "charismatic intellectual" starts a religion in the 1950s.
* CreatorBacklash: In the commentary for it, he regards his first movie, ''{{Film/Hard Eight}}'' with a mixture of dread and contempt, calling it by it's original title, [[InsistentTerminology ''Sydney'']] and talking about the ExecutiveMeddling it faced.
* CreatorProvincialism: Tends to set his movies in his childhood home of the San Fernando Valley.
* CreatorThumbprint: Tends to reference the Literature/BookOfExodus with the [[spoiler:Plague of Frogs]] in ''Film/{{Magnolia}}'' [[note]] Exodus 8:2 [[/note]] and the origin of ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood''. [[note]] Exodus 7:19 [[/note]]
* DysfunctionJunction: The majority of his characters aren't exactly emotionally stable.
* {{Ensembles}}
* EpicMovie: Most of his films are epics with some being more traditional (''Film/ThereWillBeBlood'') and some more intimate while having a grandeur to it. (''Film/{{Magnolia}}'') He even said in interviews that one of the reasons for ''Film/PunchDrunkLove'' 's origin was to make a more accessible film that didn't run over two hours.
* EpicTrackingShot
* TheFilmOfTheBook
* HumansAreBastards
* LighterAndSofter: ''Literature/InherentVice'' has a more comedic tone to it than his other movies, and Anderson said in interviews that he was inspired by [[Film/{{Airplane}} Zucker]] [[Film/TopSecret Abrahams]] and [[Film/TheNakedGun Zucker]] movies.
* MoodWhiplash: It doesn't matter what the first half of the film was like; once you reach the midpoint of the film, all bets are off. P.T. Anderson is fond of what he describes as "gearshift movies."
* NoEnding / GainaxEnding: All his films from ''{{Film/Magnolia}}'' onwards have had one or both endings.
* PopStarComposer: AimeeMann, Jon Brion and [[Music/{{Radiohead}} Jonny Greenwood]] have provided scores for his films.
* PrimaDonnaDirector / {{Jerkass}}: [[TheAtoner Admitted]] that some power went to his head during the post-production of ''Film/{{Magnolia}}'', where he frequently got into arguments with producer/distributor Creator/NewLineCinema on how to market the film and leaving ''Film/FightClub'' after a half-hour and saying Creator/DavidFincher [[DisproportionateRetribution should get cancer simply because he made cancer jokes.]] He's thankfully mellowed since then. [[note]] Despite getting his way in terms of marketing, Anderson is quoted as saying that he had to: "learn to fight without being a jerk. I was a bit of a baby. At the first moment of conflict, I behaved in a slightly adolescent knee-jerk way. I just screamed." Regarding the latter topic, he wrote an apology letter to Fincher saying that he lost his sense of humor about cancer. [[/note]]
* ProductionPosse: Usual suspects include Creator/PhilipSeymourHoffman, Creator/JulianneMoore, Creator/JohnCReilly, Luis Guzman, and Creator/PhilipBakerHall. Hoffman has been in every P.T.A. movie except ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood''. Robert Elswit whas been the cinematographer for all of them except ''Film/TheMaster''.
** As of late, [[Music/{{Radiohead}} Jonny Greenwood]] has been his composer from ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood'' onwards.
*** From [[Film/TheMaster the looks]] [[Film/InherentVice of things]], it seems like Creator/JoaquinPhoenix has become the latest member of this group.
* SceneryPorn: Especially ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood'' and ''Film/TheMaster.'' There's a reason that the former won [[UsefulNotes/AcademyAward Best Cinematography.]]
* SlidingScaleOfIdealismVersusCynicism: On the cynical side from the word "go".
* SmashToBlack
* SoundtrackDissonance: A perfect example would be near the end of ''Film/ThereWillBeBlood'' in which, after Daniel [[spoiler: kills Eli and announces that he's "finished"]]. What plays right before we get to the credits? [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6EhQd4nugps This]].
* ThrowItIn
* TrollingCreator: While at the Cannes press conference for ''Film/{{Magnolia}}'', he announced that his next film would be [[Film/PunchDrunkLove an hour-and-a-half long rom com starring Adam Sandler]] to a room full of people who just watched a three-hour long, emotionally draining epic.