Scott, Tony: Director profile

Tony Scott is the director of "Unstoppable," about a runaway train carrying a cargo of toxic chemicals. The film, which stars Denzel Washington and Chris Pine, is being released by Twentieth Century Fox on November 12.


Most recently, Scott directed the box office hit “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3” for Columbia Pictures.  Previous to “The Taking of Pelham 1 2 3,” Scott directed “Déjà Vu,” which  marked Scott’s third collaboration with Denzel Washington and his sixth collaboration with Jerry Bruckheimer.  In 1995, Scott directed “Crimson Tide,” starring Washington and Gene Hackman and produced by Bruckheimer, which received both critical and popular acclaim. Scott went on to direct Washington again in the 2004 action thriller “Man on Fire,” this time alongside Dakota Fanning and Christopher Walken. 


Scott made his feature debut in 1983 with the modern vampire story “The Hunger,” starring Catherine Deneuve, David Bowie and Susan Sarandon.  The movie was adapted as a trilogy for Showtime in 1998, in which Scott directed one episode starring Giovanni Ribisi and David Bowie.  In 1986, Scott directed Tom Cruise and Kelly McGillis in "Top Gun," and directed Eddie Murphy the following year in “Beverly Hills Cop II."


Scott’s additional film credits include: “Revenge” (1988), with Kevin Costner and Anthony Quinn; “Days Of Thunder” (1990), starring Tom Cruise and Robert Duvall; “The Last Boy Scout” (1991), with Bruce Willis; the critically acclaimed “True Romance” (1993), starring Christian Slater, Roseanna Arquette and Christopher Walken, with a script by Quentin Tarantino; and “The Fan” (1996), starring Robert De Niro and Wesley Snipes.


Born in Newcastle, Tyne and Wear, England, Scott attended the Sunderland Art School, where he received a fine arts degree in painting.  While completing a yearlong post-graduate study at Leeds College, he developed an interest in cinematography and made “One of the Missing,” a half hour film financed by the British Film Institute and based on an Ambrose Bierce short story.  He then went on to earn his Master of Fine Arts degree at the Royal College of Arts, completing another film for the British Film Institute, “Loving Memory,” from an original script financed by Albert Finney. 


In 1973, Scott partnered with brother Ridley to form the London-based commercial production company, RSA.  Over the next decade, Scott won a number of Clio awards, several Silver and Gold Lion Awards from the Cannes International Television/Cinema Commercials Festival, and London’s prestigious Designers & Art Directors Award.  While working as a commercial director, Scott also made three movies for television: two documentaries and a one-hour special entitled “Author of Beltraffio” from the story by Henry James.  In 2002, under the RSA banner, Scott produced a series of stylish short film adver-tainments for automaker BMW starring Clive Owen. Scott himself directed one of these shorts entitled “Beat the Devil,” which featured Owen, James Brown and Gary Oldman.


In 1995, the two brothers went on to form the film and television production company Scott Free.  With offices in Los Angeles and London, the Scott’s have produced such films as “The A Team,” “In Her Shoes,” “Tristan + Isolde” and the Academy Award-nominated “The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford,” starring Brad Pitt. They also executive produce the CBS series “Numbers,” which earlier this year wrapped its fifth and final season, as well as the critically acclaimed new series “The Good Wife” for CBS.