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illustration Auteur



Part of speech: noun

Origin: French, 1960s


A filmmaker whose personal influence and artistic control over a movie are so great that the filmmaker is regarded as the author of the movie.

Examples of Auteur in a sentence

"Kathryn’s goal was to become an auteur whose films were instantly recognizable."

"The movie’s distinct elements made the young director an auteur seemingly overnight."

About Auteur

This word first popped up in the 1960s. It’s a French term that literally translates to “author.”

Did you Know?

American film critic Andrew Sarris coined the term “auteur theory” from the French translation and used it in his famous 1962 essay, “Notes on the Auteur Theory.” This is how the word “auteur” was popularized in the United States. As a result of this and other Sarris writings, more public attention was turned to the overall craft of filmmaking instead of being focused solely on the actors.

illustration Auteur

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