American music video directors

Posted Oct 26, 2009
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  1. Jared Leto
    #1

    Jared Leto

    4,951,712 views

    Jared Leto (/lɛt/; born December 26, 1971) is an American actor, singer, songwriter, and director. After starting his career with television appearances in the early 1990s, Leto achieved recognition for his role as Jordan Catalano on the television series My So-Called Life (1994). He made his film debut in How to Make an American Quilt (1995) and received critical praise for his performance in Prefontaine (1997). Leto played supporting roles in The Thin Red Line (1998), Fight Club (1999) and American Psycho (2000), as well as the lead role in Urban Legend (1998), and earned critical acclaim after portraying heroin addict Harry Goldfarb in Requiem for a Dream (2000). He later began focusing increasingly on his music career, returning to acting with Panic Room (2002), Alexander (2004), Lord of War (2005), Lonely Hearts (2006), Chapter 27 (2007), and Mr. Nobody (2009). He made his directorial debut in 2012 with the documentary film Artifact.


  2. Jennifer Lopez
    #2

    Jennifer Lopez

    2,088,743 views

    Jennifer Lynn Lopez (born July 24, 1969), also known as J. Lo, is an American actress, author, fashion designer, dancer, producer, and singer. She became interested in pursuing a career in the entertainment industry following a minor role in the 1986 film My Little Girl, to the dismay of her Puerto Rican parents, who believed that it was an unrealistic career route for a Hispanic. Lopez gained her first regular high-profile job as a Fly Girl dancer on In Living Color in 1991, where she remained a regular until she decided to pursue an acting career in 1993. She received her first leading role in the Selena biopic of the same name in 1997. Lopez became the first Latina actress to earn over US$1million for a role the following year, with the film Out of Sight. She ventured into the music industry in 1999 with her debut studio album, On the 6.


  3. Chris Brown
    #3

    Chris Brown

    2,112,772 views

    Christopher Maurice "Chris" Brown (born May 5, 1989) is an American recording artist, dancer and actor. Born in Tappahannock, Virginia, he taught himself to sing and dance at a young age and was involved in his church choir and several local talent shows. Having signed with Jive Records in 2004, Brown released his self-titled debut studio album the following year. It peaked at number two on the US Billboard 200 and was later certified double platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). With his first single "Run It!" peaking atop the US Billboard Hot 100, Brown became the first male artist as a lead since Diddy in 1997 to have his debut single top the chart. His second album Exclusive (2007) spawned his second Hot 100 number one "Kiss Kiss", in addition to "With You" and "Forever". The album was also certified double platinum by the RIAA.


  4. Beyoncé Knowles
    #4

    Beyoncé Knowles

    1,499,060 views

    Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter (/bˈjɒns/ bee-YON-say) (born September 4, 1981) is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she performed in various singing and dancing competitions as a child, and rose to fame in the late 1990s as lead singer of R&B girl-group Destiny's Child. Managed by her father Mathew Knowles, the group became one of the world's best-selling girl groups of all time. Their hiatus saw the release of Beyoncé's debut album, Dangerously in Love (2003), which established her as a solo artist worldwide; it sold 11 million copies, earned five Grammy Awards and featured the Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles "Crazy in Love" and "Baby Boy".


  5. Britney Spears
    #5

    Britney Spears

    1,440,799 views

    Britney Jean Spears (born December 2, 1981) is an American singer and actress. Born in McComb, Mississippi, and raised in Kentwood, Louisiana, she performed acting roles in stage productions and television shows as a child before signing with Jive Records in 1997. Spears's first and second studio albums, ...Baby One More Time (1999) and Oops!... I Did It Again (2000), became international successes, with the former becoming the best-selling album by a teenage solo artist. Title tracks "...Baby One More Time" and "Oops!... I Did It Again" broke international sales records. In 2001, Spears released her self-titled third studio album, Britney, and played the starring role in the film Crossroads (2002). She assumed creative control of her fourth studio album, In the Zone (2003), which yielded the worldwide success of the "Toxic" single.


  6. Mariah Carey
    #6

    Mariah Carey

    921,280 views

    Mariah Carey (born March 27, 1969 or 1970) is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and actress. She rose to prominence after releasing her self-titled debut studio album Mariah Carey in 1990; it went multiplatinum and spawned four consecutive number one singles on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. Under the guidance of Columbia Records executive and later husband Tommy Mottola, Carey continued booking success with follow-up albums Emotions (1991), Music Box (1993), and Merry Christmas (1994), and was established as Columbia's highest-selling act. Daydream (1995) made music history when its second single "One Sweet Day", a duet with Boyz II Men, spent a record sixteen weeks on top of the Billboard Hot 100, and it remains the longest-running number-one song in U.S. chart history. During the recording of the album, Carey began to deviate from her slower R&B and ballad-oriented beginnings and slowly transitioned into hip hop. This musical change became further established with the release of Butterfly (1997), which was released during the midst of her separation from Mottola.


  7. Ciara
    #7

    Ciara

    950,999 views

    Ciara Princess Harris (born October 25, 1985), known mononymously as Ciara (pronounced /sˈɛrə/, see-ERR), is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, dancer, actress and fashion model. Born in Austin, Texas, she traveled around the world during her childhood, eventually moving to Atlanta, Georgia where she joined the girl group Hearsay; however, the group disbanded after having differences. It was at this time Ciara was noticed for her songwriting. In 2002, Ciara met music producer Jazze Pha. With his help, she signed a record deal with LaFace Records.


  8. Lady Gaga
    #8

    Lady Gaga

    782,788 views

    Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta (/ˈstɛfən ɜːrməˈnɒtə/ STEF-ə-nee jur-mə-NOT; born March 28, 1986), known professionally as Lady Gaga, is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. She is known for her self-empowering messages, fashion, and live performances. Gaga initially performed in theater, appearing in high school plays, and studied at CAP21 through New York University's Tisch School of the Arts before dropping out to pursue a musical career. After leaving a rock band, participating in the Lower East Side's avant garde performance art circuit, and being dropped from a contract with Def Jam Recordings, Gaga worked as a songwriter for Sony/ATV Music Publishing. There, recording artist Akon noticed her vocal abilities and helped her to sign a joint deal with Interscope Records and his own KonLive Distribution.


  9. Usher Raymond
    #9

    Usher Raymond

    677,439 views

    Usher Terry Raymond IV (born October 14, 1978) is an American singer, songwriter, dancer, and actor. He rose to fame in the late 1990s with the release of his second album My Way, which spawned his first U.S. Billboard Hot 100 number-one hit, "Nice & Slow". The album has been certified 6-times platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). His follow-up album, 8701, produced the Billboard Hot 100 number one hits "U Remind Me" and "U Got It Bad".


  10. Christina Aguilera
    #10

    Christina Aguilera

    653,765 views

    Christina María Aguilera (born December 18, 1980) is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. Born in Staten Island, New York and raised in Rochester and Wexford, Pennsylvania, she appeared on the television series Star Search and The Mickey Mouse Club in her early years. After recording "Reflection", the theme for Disney's 1998 film Mulan, Aguilera signed with RCA Records and rose to prominence with her 1999 teen pop self-titled debut album. The album debuted at number one on the U.S. Billboard 200 and spawned the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles "Genie in a Bottle", "What a Girl Wants", and "Come On Over Baby (All I Want Is You)". A year later, she released her first Spanish-language album Mi Reflejo, which sold over three million copies worldwide, and the holiday album My Kind of Christmas. Displeased with her lack of input in her image and music, Aguilera assumed creative control for her fourth studio album, Stripped (2002), which draws influences from a variety of genres including soul, hip hop, Latin, and rock. The album spawned the top-ten singles "Dirrty" and "Beautiful", and earned a Grammy Award for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance for "Beautiful".


  11. Alicia Keys
    #11

    Alicia Keys

    610,106 views

    Alicia Augello Cook (born January 25, 1981), known by the pseudonym Alicia Keys, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, and actress. Keys released her debut album with J Records, having had previous record deals first with Columbia and then Arista Records. Keys' debut album, Songs in A Minor, was a commercial success, selling over 12 million copies worldwide. She became the best-selling new artist and best-selling R&B artist of 2001. The album earned Keys five Grammy Awards in 2002, including Best New Artist and Song of the Year for "Fallin'" becoming the second American recording artist to win five Grammys in one night. Her second studio album, The Diary of Alicia Keys, was released in 2003 and was also another success worldwide, selling eight million copies. The album garnered her an additional four Grammy Awards in 2005. Later that year, she released her first live album, Unplugged, which debuted at number one in the United States. She became the first female to have an MTV Unplugged album to debut at number one and the highest since Nirvana in 1994.


  12. Shia LaBeouf
    #12

    Shia LaBeouf

    644,812 views

    Shia Saide LaBeouf (i/ˈʃ.ə ləˈbʌf/; born June 11, 1986) is an American actor and director who became known among younger audiences as Louis Stevens in the Disney Channel series Even Stevens. LaBeouf received a Young Artist Award nomination in 2001 and won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2003 for his role. He made his film debut in Holes (2003), based on the novel of the same name by Louis Sachar. In 2004, he made his directorial debut with the short film Let's Love Hate and later directed a short film titled Maniac (2011), starring American rappers Cage and Kid Cudi.


  13. R. Kelly
    #13

    R. Kelly

    576,625 views

    Robert Sylvester Kelly (born January 8, 1967), known professionally as R. Kelly, is an American singer, songwriter, record producer, rapper and former professional basketball player. A native of Chicago, Illinois, often referred to as the King of R&B, Kelly began performing during the late 1980s and debuted in 1992 with the group Public Announcement. In 1993, Kelly went solo with the album 12 Play. He is known for a collection of major hit singles including "Bump N' Grind", "Your Body's Callin'", "I Believe I Can Fly", "Gotham City", "Ignition (Remix)", "If I Could Turn Back the Hands of Time", "The World's Greatest", "I'm a Flirt (Remix)", and the hip-hopera "Trapped in the Closet". In 1998, Kelly won three Grammy Awards for "I Believe I Can Fly". His distinctive sound and style has influenced numerous hip hop and contemporary R&B artists. Kelly became the first music star to play professional basketball, when he got signed in 1997.


  14. Drew Barrymore
    #14

    Drew Barrymore

    569,697 views

    Drew Blythe Barrymore (born February 22, 1975) is an American actress, author, director, model and producer. She is a descendant of the Barrymore family of well-known American stage and cinema actors, and is a granddaughter of actor John Barrymore. Barrymore first appeared in an advertisement when she was eleven months old. In 1980, she made her film debut in Altered States. In 1982, she starred in her breakout role as Gertie in Steven Spielberg's E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and quickly became one of Hollywood's most recognized child actresses, going on to establish herself in mainly comic roles.


  15. Kanye West
    #15

    Kanye West

    584,072 views

    Kanye Omari West (/ˈkɑːnj/; born June 8, 1977) is an American recording artist, songwriter, record producer, fashion designer, director and founder of the record label GOOD Music and creative content company DONDA. He is among the most successful and acclaimed musicians of the 21st century, and has attracted both praise and controversy for his outspoken public persona.


  16. Nia Long
    #16

    Nia Long

    415,281 views

    Nia Long (born October 30, 1970) is an American actress. She is best known for her roles in the television series The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Third Watch, and the films In Too Deep, Boyz n the Hood, Friday, Boiler Room, Soul Food, Love Jones, The Best Man, Big Momma's House, and the sequels to the latter two films.


  17. Lenny Kravitz
    #17

    Lenny Kravitz

    551,526 views

    Leonard Albert "Lenny" Kravitz (born May 26, 1964) is an American singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, record producer, actor and arranger, whose "retro" style incorporates elements of rock, blues, soul, R&B, funk, jazz, reggae, hard rock, psychedelic, pop, folk and ballads. In addition to singing lead and backing vocals, Kravitz often plays all the guitar, bass, drums, keyboards, and percussion himself when recording.


  18. Snoop Dogg
    #18

    Snoop Dogg

    344,764 views

    Calvin Cordozar Broadus Jr. (born October 20, 1971 or 1972), best known by his stage name Snoop Dogg, is an American rapper and actor from Long Beach, California. His music career began in 1992, when he was discovered by Dr. Dre of N.W.A and as a result was prominently featured throughout Dr. Dre's solo debut album, The Chronic (1992). He has since sold over 21 million albums in United States and 35 million albums worldwide.


  19. Norman Reedus
    #19

    Norman Reedus

    425,619 views

    Norman Mark Reedus (born January 6, 1969) is an American actor and model best known for his television role as Daryl Dixon on the The Walking Dead, an AMC horror drama series (2010–present). He has also acted in numerous films, appeared in and created several videos, done video game voiceovers, and modeled for various fashion designers, most recognizably Prada in the 1990s.


  20. Shannen Doherty
    #20

    Shannen Doherty

    300,707 views

    Shannen Maria Doherty (/ˈd.ərti/; born April 12, 1971) is an American actress, producer, author, and television director. She is known for her roles as Brenda Walsh in Beverly Hills, 90210 (1990–94), and as Prue Halliwell in Charmed (1998–2001).


  21. Joaquin Phoenix
    #21

    Joaquin Phoenix

    333,180 views

    Joaquín Rafael Phoenix (/ˌhwɑːˈkn/; born Joaquín Rafael Bottom, October 28, 1974), known formerly as Leaf Phoenix, is an American actor, producer, music video director, musician and activist. For his work as an artist, Phoenix has received a Grammy Award, a Golden Globe Award and three Academy Award nominations.


  22. Nick Cannon
    #22

    Nick Cannon

    414,883 views

    Nicholas Scott "Nick" Cannon (born October 8, 1980) is an American rapper, actor, comedian, television and radio host, and producer. On television, Cannon began as a teenager on All That before going on to host The Nick Cannon Show, Wild 'N Out, and America's Got Talent. He acted in the films Drumline, Love Don't Cost a Thing, and Roll Bounce. As a rapper he released his debut self-titled album in 2003 with the hit single "Gigolo", a collaboration with singer R. Kelly. In 2007 he played the role of the fictional footballer TJ Harper in the film Goal II: Living the Dream. In 2006, Cannon recorded the singles "Dime Piece" and "My Wife" for the planned album Stages, which was never released. Cannon married American R&B/pop singer Mariah Carey in 2008. He filed for divorce in December 2014 after six years of marriage, which was finalized in April 2015.


  23. Sean Combs
    #23

    Sean Combs

    324,862 views

    Sean John Combs (born November 4, 1969), also known by his stage names Puff Daddy, Puffy, Diddy, and P. Diddy, is an American rapper, record producer, actor, and entrepreneur. Combs was born in Harlem and grew up in Mount Vernon, New York. He worked as a talent director at Uptown Records before founding Bad Boy Records in 1993. He signed The Notorious B.I.G. and profited from the success of the artists he signed. He released his debut album No Way Out in 1997, which has been certified seven times platinum and was followed by successful albums such as Forever (1999), The Saga Continues... (2001) and Press Play (2006). In 2009 Combs formed the musical group Diddy – Dirty Money and released the critically well-reviewed and commercially successful album Last Train to Paris (2010).


  24. Soulja Boy
    #24

    Soulja Boy

    278,663 views

    DeAndre Cortez Way (born July 28, 1990), better known by his stage name Soulja Boy Tell 'Em, or simply Soulja Boy, is an American rapper, record producer, actor and entrepreneur.


  25. Rashida Jones
    #25

    Rashida Jones

    249,541 views

    Rashida Leah Jones (born February 25, 1976) is an American actress, comic book author, film producer, and screenwriter. She is known for playing Ann Perkins on NBC's comedy Parks and Recreation, Louisa Fenn on Fox's Boston Public, and Karen Filippelli on The Office. She has had film roles in Our Idiot Brother, The Social Network, The Muppets, I Love You, Man, and Celeste and Jesse Forever (for which she wrote the screenplay).


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