Sam Mendes made his directorial debut in the 1999 black comedy-drama film ‘American Beauty.’ The film opened to universal acclaim with critics showering praise on Mendes. ‘America Beauty’ was also a massive box office success and grossed over $356.3 million against a budget of $15 million. In 2002, he directed the period crime film ‘Road to Perdition.’ The film saw rave reviews upon release and was a major commercial success. He next directed the 2005 biographical war drama film ‘Jarhead,’ which turned out to be a box-office disappointment.
In 2007, he produced the television film ‘Stuart: A Life Backwards.’ The film was based on Alexander Masters’ biography of his friend ‘Stuart Clive Shorte.’ He returned to the director’s chair in 2008 for the romantic drama film ‘Revolutionary Road.’ The film received positive response from critics and was a financial success. The following year, he directed the comedy-drama film ‘Away We Go,’ which was a box office disappointment. He next directed the 2012 spy film ‘Skyfall,’ which was the twenty-third installment of the James Bond series. The film received critical acclaim upon release and won 2 ‘Academy Awards.’ ‘Skyfall’ was also a phenomenal box office success and went on to become one of the highest-grossing films of all time. In 2015, Mendes returned to direct 'Spectre,' the next film in the James Bond franchise. The film received mostly positive reviews and was a major commercial success.
In 2019, Mendes directed the British war film ‘1917,’ which was a major critical and box office success. He was also the producer and writer of the film.