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Creator / Darren Aronofsky

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"I'd like to do a lot of different stuff. I think it's important as a creative person to keep challenging yourself and keep doing new stuff. If you end up trying to repeat yourself it's death. It just becomes boring and takes the passion out of it. You gotta find stories and characters that you really want to hang out with."

Darren Aronofsky (born February 12, 1969) is an American film director, producer and screenwriter, known for producing controversial art-house movies with avant-garde filming techniques. He is a close collaborator with composer Clint Mansell.

His works to date include:

He has also been attached to other projects at various times, including a set of PSAs for The Montana Meth Project, an early version of what would eventually become Batman Begins, The Fighter, a remake of RoboCop that died in Development Hell and The Wolverine.

He was in a relationship with actress Rachel Weisz (who had a role in The Fountain) from 2001 to 2010. He also dated Jennifer Lawrence, whom he directed for his 2017 film mother!.


Tropes associated with Aronofsky's work:

  • Body Horror: Expect his films to be as direct and uncinematic as possible when showing damage to the human body.
  • Central Theme: His films are usually about obsession, ambition, and the psychological torment that comes from it.
  • Creator Provincialism: He was born and raised in New York City, Manhattan Beach, Brooklyn to be precise, and three of his films have been set there with The Wrestler takes place in nearby New Jersey.
  • Creator Thumbprint:
    • Many (if not all) of his works carry a constant underlying plot of obsession leading to the main character's self-destruction (or near-destruction).
    • He also commonly ties Christian and environmentalist themes together, with specific focus on environmentalist implications of the Garden of Eden.
  • Downer Ending: His films don't tend to have happy endings.
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  • Facecam: Used in π and Requiem for a Dream, which popularized it. One of the DVD bonus features included with π is a clip of Sean Gullette testing out a Face Cam while walking around New York.
  • Fan Disservice: He somehow managed to make Jennifer Connelly performing a lesbian sex act on stage (Requiem for a Dream) and Natalie Portman making out with Mila Kunis (Black Swan) terrifying.
  • Production Posse: invoked Matthew Libatique was the cinematographer of all his films except The Wrestler, Clint Mansell composed the score for all of them except mother! and Andrew Weisblum was the editor for the last four. Mark Margolis, who plays a main role in π, has small roles in all of Aronofsky's following films except mother!. Additionally, Ellen Burstyn has roles in Requiem for a Dream and The Fountain, and Sean Gullette appears in both π and Requiem for a Dream. Stanley B. Herman also plays a Dirty Old Man in π, Requiem for a Dream, and Black Swan. James Jean has done promo art for The Fountain and Noah and also did the first two teaser posters for mother!.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism Versus Cynicism: Most of his films lean heavily to the cynical side. Testament to this: Requiem and mother! have been listed as two of the most depressing movies of ALL TIME. As a rule: His. Films. Can get. DARK.
  • Violence Is Disturbing: His films do not hold back from this trope and he's even said he hates the use of violence in films in a more casual manner.
  • What Could Have Been: invoked He was supposed to direct the Lost episode "?", hence that episode being even more dependent on surrealism than the show usually was, but The Fountain ended up taking too much of his time.
    • At one point (before Christopher Nolan was brought into the franchise) he was also attached to a live action version of Batman: Year One, with Frank Miller writing the script. He and Warner Bros. just couldn’t come to an agreement about what the film should be, mostly around casting as he wanted Joaquin Phoenix in the lead while WB wanted Freddie Prinze Jr.
    • He walked out on directing The Wolverine after getting fed up with Executive Meddling not letting him make it R-rated, plus wanting to spend more time with his family.
    • He's also expressed a desire to direct a Superman film and was even in talks for Man of Steel.