Joe Johnston


Joseph Eggleston Johnston II (born May 13, 1950) is an American film director, writer, and visual effects artist. He began his career as a visual effects artist on George Lucas’ original Star Wars trilogy, along with Steven Spielberg’s first two Indiana Jones films, winning an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects for Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981).

Johnston made his film debut with Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989), with Rick Moranis, Matt Frewer, Marcia Strassman, Kristine Sutherland. Films in the 1990s include The Rocketeer (1991), with Bill Campbell, Jennifer Connelly, Alan Arkin, Timothy Dalton, Paul Sorvino, and Tiny Ron Taylor; Jumanji (1996), with Robin Williams, Bonnie Hunt, Kirsten Dunst, Jonathan Hyde, and David Alan Grier; and October Sky (1999), with Jake Gyllenhaal, Chris Cooper, Chris Owen, and Laura Dern.

Films in the 2000s include Jurassic Park III (2001), with Sam Neill, William H. Macy, Téa Leoni, Alessandro Nivola, Trevor Morgan, and Michael Jeter; Hidalgo (2004), with Viggo Mortensen, Zuleikha Robinson, Omar Sharif, J.K. Simmons, and Malcolm McDowell; The Wolfman (2010), with Benicio del Toro, Anthony Hopkins, Emily Blunt and Hugo Weaving, and Geraldine Chaplin.

Films in the 2010s include the MCU entry Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), with Chris Evans, Tommy Lee Jones, Weaving, Hayley Atwell, Sebastian Stan, Dominic Cooper, Neal McDonough, Derek Luke, Toby Jones, and Stanley Tucci; Not Safe for Work (2014), with Max Minghella, JJ Feild, Eloise Mumford, and Christian Clemenson; and The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018), with Keira Knightley, Mackenzie Foy, Eugenio Derbez, Matthew Macfadyen, Richard E. Grant, Misty Copeland, Helen Mirren, and Morgan Freeman.

Each review will be linked to the title below.

(*seen originally in theaters)

(**seen rereleased in theaters)

  • Star Wars (1977)** – directed by George Lucas – visual effects artist
  • The Empire Strikes Back (1980)** – directed by Irvin Kershner – visual effects artist, art director
  • Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)** – directed by Steven Spielberg – visual effects artist, art director
  • Return of the Jedi (1983)** – directed by Richard Marquand – art director
  • Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) – directed by Steven Spielberg – art director
  • Howard the Duck (1986) – directed by Willard Huyck – ultralight sequence designer
  • *batteries not included (1987) – directed by Matthew Robbins – 2nd unit director, production manager
  • Willow (1988) – directed by Ron Howard – associate producer
  • Honey, I Shrunk the Kids (1989) – director
  • Always (1989) – directed by Steven Spielberg – aerial sequence designer
  • The Rocketeer (1991)* – director
  • The Pagemaster (1994)* – director – live action segments
  • Jumanji (1995)* – director
  • October Sky (1999)* – director
  • The Iron Giant (1999)** – directed by Brad Bird – designer of Iron Giant
  • Jurassic Park III (2001) – director
  • Hidalgo (2004) – director
  • The Wolfman (2010)* – director
  • Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)* – director
  • Not Safe for Work (2014) – director
  • The Nutcracker and the Four Realms (2018) – co-directing credit with Lasse Hallström
  • Shrunk (202-) – director