“I didn’t fit in the boxes that the world was telling me to fit in.” – Jordan Peele
Although American comedian and director Jordan Peele rose to prominence with the hilarious Key & Peele where he collaborated with Keegan-Michael Key, he has been generating some noise recently for his work in the horror genre. His 2017 directorial debut Get Out earned him widespread critical acclaim, including the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay, along with nominations for Best Picture and Best Director.
He followed up the unprecedented success of Get Out with another horror film in 2019 titled Us. The film starred Lupita Nyong’o as a young woman whose family gets attacked by terrifying doppelgängers. Get Out still remains the apotheosis of Peele’s burgeoning filmmaking career but Us was also a critical and commercial hit, garnering a box office revenue of $255 million just like his Oscar-winning debut.
While getting into the production phase of Us, Peele wanted Lupita Nyong’o to research more about the genre in order to understand her demanding role a little better. He curated a list of nine horror films for her to watch as “homework” which would ensure that she would be ready for the project. These films have inspired Peele’s work as well, influencing the way in which he has learnt to tell stories as a filmmaker.
Peele’s films have earned him comparisons to some of the greatest directors to have ever graced the genre, including one Alfred Hitchcock. However, Peele wasn’t too fond of this particular comparison. He said: “He’s kind of a creep.” Peele went on to clarify, “Of course, on the artistic level, I love being compared to the man who brought me Psycho, The Birds, Rear Window, Vertigo… he’s the greatest.”
Check out some of Jordan Peele’s favourite horror films below:
Jordan Peele’s 9 favourite horror films:
- Dead Again (Kenneth Branagh – 1991)
- The Shining (Stanley Kubrick – 1980)
- The Babadook (Jennifer Kent – 2014)
- It Follows (David Robert Mitchell – 2014)
- A Tale of Two Sisters (Kim Jee-woon – 2003)
- The Birds (Alfred Hitchcock – 1963)
- Funny Games (Michael Haneke – 1997)
- Martyrs (Pascal Laugier – 2008)
- Let the Right One In (Tomas Alfredson – 2008)