Of all the actors who become directors, few hit it out of the park in their first turn at bat quite like Greta Gerwig. Actually, strike that. No one has hit it out of the park like the 34-year-old. Her directorial debut, Lady Bird, is officially the best-reviewed film of all time on Rotten Tomatoes.
Greta — who’s 5’8″ of pure talent — previously impressed critics with her performances in films such as Greenberg, Frances Ha (which she co-wrote), and 20th Century Women. But, she hadn’t helmed a movie until Lady Bird.
Greta (left) and Lady Bird star Saoirse Ronan. (Photo Credit: Getty Images)
The film, a coming-of-age tale set in early-2000s Sacramento, boasted a 100% Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes after 165 reviews, beating the previous record set by Toy Story 2, which was 163 positive reviews. Suffice it to say, critics are gaga for Greta. “Gerwig’s writing and direction are elegantly precise,” HuffPost wrote. “It’s a remarkable solo directorial debut,” added IGN.
Greta happens to have a lot of writing-directing inspiration — she’s been dating filmmaker Noah Baumbach since 2011 — but the success of Lady Bird is all her doing. And to think the Cali native once struggled to get into playwriting MFA programs! After that setback, she turned to acting, making her debut with a minor role in the 2006 film LOL.
This Barnard College grad has also appeared on TV in Portlandia, The Mindy Project, and the Dec. 2 episode of Saturday Night Live. She also starred in the CBS pilot How I Met Your Dad, a proposed spin-off of How I Met Your Mother.
Next up, Greta will lend her voice to Wes Anderson’s upcoming animated film Isle of Dogs, joining an all-star cast, which includes Bryan Cranston, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Jeff Goldblum, and Scarlett Johansson. After this decade of success, we can only imagine where the next one will take her!