Creativity 50 2011: David Fincher

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Credit: Merrick Morton/Columbia

"The King's Speech" may have taken home the Best Picture statue, but the most original achievement among this year's nominated films just may have been from "The Social Network" director David Fincher.

By turning the back story of Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook into a Machiavellian tale of power and betrayal, Mr. Fincher made something truly compelling out of what may have otherwise been a feature-length "60 Minutes" profile in less-capable hands. The film received enough "likes" from critics to achieve a near-perfect 96% score on Rotten Tomatoes, and audiences accepted the film's friend request, too -- to the tune of $96 million in domestic box office and an additional $127.9 million overseas.

The surprise success of "The Social Network" has given an extra boost to Mr. Fincher's already-thriving career, with expectations extra high for his upcoming remake of ├╝ber-popular Swedish crime thriller "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" this Christmas. He's also about to direct "House of Cards," Netflix's first-ever original series, starring Kevin Spacey. But no matter the outcome of either project, Fincher has already earned due praise for finding a timeless story in a uniquely post-millennial business drama.

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