Ridley Scott was born on 30 November 1937 in South Shields, North East England. With a routinely absent military father, his family moved extensively across the border to countries like Wales and Germany. Scott studied at the Royal College of Art and aided in establishing the movie department. Although he has reached great heights in his career, he has also seen his share of failures as all great artists do.
His first feature film as director came in 1977 with The Duellists. However, it didn't exactly make commercial waves and two years later he struck gold with the classic sci-fi horror Alien which starred Sigourney Weaver. By using his natural sense for lighting and building suspense through ambient music, he managed to set a high standard for any horror that followed.
In 1982, Scott faced another commercial failure called Blade Runner, but it took a few years for people to realize how good the movie was and now it's considered a classic.
Fast forwarding to 1992, Scott's career wasn't in the best place. This would dramatically change with the release of Thelma and Louise featuring the talents of Susan Sarandon and Geena Davis as the rebels who drove off that unnecessary cliff. With his name back on the popular list, Scott directed the critically acclaimed Gladiator in 2000. This movie also portrayed his incredible visual style for which he is well-known. Lesser known then Thelma and Louise or Gladiator, but very entertaining is Matchstik Men (2003) which Scott also co-produced.
In 2006, Scott took on American Gangster which follows the true story of Frank Lucas, a drug kingpin. The film has gaining commercial popularity, but it is not hard to find missteps in the story. Neither was Body of Lies thatfollowed in 2008 a very cohesive piece. It resulted in mixed reviews and failed at the box office.
More recently Scott released The Counselor last year. It is filled with an all-star cast, including Brad Pitt, and as far as commercial popularity is concerned it's only for fans. The film is based on drug smuggling, sex and dark humor. In other words, it's not for the faint hearted.
Ridley Scott might not always get it right, but one has to consider that he doesn't always aim to make "crowd pleasers". Numerous directors have incorporated his methods and he continues to present some of the most mesmerizing movies in modern times.