Top 25 most murderous directors of all time

Last weekend, I discovered a web site where a group of dedicated film fanatics have been systematically counting on-screen deaths in various films for several years. I immediately set out to scrape all of the data from their web site and forums so I could visualize it and see what we could learn. I posted the data online to save everyone else the chore of repeating the scrape.

Below is the fourth in a series of visualizations I created, showing the top 25 most murderous directors ordered by the number of on-screen deaths in their films. If you would like to feature any of these visualizations on your own web site, please contact me first.

Top 25 Most Murderous Directors

Top 25 Most Murderous Directors

Some interesting facts


The most murderous female director? Katja von Garnier with 256 on-screen deaths in films she’s directed.


Most of Peter Jackson’s film deaths happen in just two films. 836 in LotR: Return of the King (2003) and 468 in LotR: The Two Towers (2002).


This picture really helps Peter Jackson’s case for being the most murderous director of all time:

Peter Jackson: Murderous

Peter Jackson: Murderous


John Woo seems to have stopped actively directing films in 2003, so even though Jackson and Woo are ranked closely, it looks like Jackson will easily maintain his lead — especially with The Hobbit films coming out!


Sylvester Stallone ranked in 3rd on the deadliest actor list and 15th on the most murderous directors list. Unsurprisingly for some, Stallone has truly built a career off of violence and death on film!


Have you found any interesting facts in the data? Post them as a comment here!

Randy is a PhD candidate in Michigan State University's Computer Science program. As a member of Dr. Chris Adami's research lab, he studies biologically-inspired artificial intelligence and evolutionary processes.

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About this blog

The data visualizations on this blog are the result of my “data tinkering” hobby, where I tackle a new data analysis problem every week. If I find something interesting, I report my findings here to share with the world.

If you would like to use one of my graphs on your website or in a publication, please email me.

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