Daniel Francis "Danny" Boyle (born 20 October 1956) is an English-Irish filmmaker. As a teenager, he was planning on joining the Catholic Priesthood, but a priest persuaded him to seek a different vocation. He began his career as a director first in the theatre, but then moved on to television and ultimately film.
His films have been, to put it mildly, diverse. He's done sci-fi, zombie horror, a kids movie, crime drama, Bollywood-inspired drama, and not easily definable works as well. He's also one of few successful filmmakers to have two movies with a character diving into a toilet.
Despite having a very broad range of styles, he's known for his use of music in his films and his dynamic cinematography. He also dabbles in magic realism from time to time. He has a few repeat collaborators in Ewan McGregor (who appeared in his first three filmsnote ) and worked with Cillian Murphy, screenwriter Alex Garland, and composer John Murphy on both 28 Days Later and Sunshine.
He also directed the manic opening ceremony for the 2012 Summer Olympic Games in London, which famously included a bit in which James Bond (Daniel Craig) accompanies Queen Elizabeth herself at the ceremony, which ends with both of them (well, stuntmen) parachuting into the stadium.
He's known for fairly animated and interesting DVD commentaries, usually accompanied by the film's screenwriter (though not always).
His filmography includes:
- Shallow Grave - 1994
- Trainspotting - 1996
- A Life Less Ordinary - 1997
- The Beach - 2000
- 28 Days Later - 2002. Later spawned a sequel in 2007 titled 28 Weeks Later, which Boyle served as executive producer but not as director due to his commitments in directing Sunshine.
- Millions - 2004
- Sunshine - 2007
- Slumdog Millionaire - 2008. He won the Best Director Academy Award for his efforts.
- 127 Hours - 2010
- Frankenstein - 2011. Stage adaptation starring Jonny Lee Miller and Benedict Cumberbatch.
- Trance - 2013
- Steve Jobs - 2015
- T2 Trainspotting - 2017. A sequel to Trainspotting.
- Trust - 2018
- Yesterday - 2019
Tropes Associated With Boyle's work
- Black Comedy: Usually done in his films, particularly the Trainspotting films.
- Genre Roulette: He's done dark comedies, horror films, sci-fi, heartwarming dramas, biopics and crime films and done each in a different way.
- Humans Are Flawed / Humans Are Special
- Shades of Conflict: Most films would head towards Gray-and-Grey Morality
- Signature Style: Averted. Danny Boyle is known for not exactly having a style and creating a film very differently with each and every project he is a part of.
- Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: Danny Boyle himself said that he is more optimistic on just about everything, but several of his films might portray a more cynical tone.
- What Could Have Been: He was set to write and direct the 25th James Bond film (which would become No Time to Die) but left the project six months later in August 2018, due to Creative Differences. He said a few months later that the experience had completely soured him on doing any more major blockbusters and he'd be sticking purely with his own work.