The Ultimate Steven Spielberg Fandom Quiz!

By: Olivia Cantor
Image: TMDB

About This Quiz

American filmmaker Steven Spielberg has already earned his place in world cinema by coming up with interesting films that give color to specific eras and genres. He continues to push the boundaries of cinema. Think you know enough about the man and his films? Take this quiz and find out!

Prior to professionally directing feature films, Spielberg honed his craft directing what kind of films?

Spielberg got his first professional experience directing TV series episodes. This helped him when he graduated to directing TV movies later on. Some of his TV movies include Something Evil, Savage, and Duel.

The very first feature-length film Spielberg directed was The Sugarland Express, starring which blonde actress?

The Sugarland Express was released in 1974 and starred Goldie Hawn. The story is based on a real-life crime story in Texas. While Spielberg started with the crime genre, he would become well-known for other genres later on.

Which creature-focused thriller film of the 1970s catapulted Steven Spielberg to mainstream stardom?

Jaws was released in 1975. It made a mark with audiences because of the unique musical score, coupled with creative editing that implied doom and danger without overtly showing it. This kind of style was later employed in Spielberg’s other films.

One of Spielberg’s space-related films is which 1977 classic?

Close Encounters of the Third Kind envisions how humans could have direct contact with alien life forms. This is considered as the third kind of encounter in UFO discourses. The first type of encounter is just a sighting, and the second type is physical evidence of aliens.

Which other alien-themed film by Spielberg endeared him to a younger audience, since it featured a preteen's story?

E.T. featured the story of preteen Elliot, who befriends an alien. It was a huge blockbuster when it came out in 1982, and further solidified Spielberg’s reputation as a big box-office director.

Which Spielberg adventure film introduced the world to archaeology professor Indiana Jones?

Raiders of the Lost Ark, about the pursuit of the Ark of the Covenant during Hitler’s time, was released in 1981. The film introduced the now-popular character of Indiana Jones, portrayed by Harrison Ford. The film became one of the quintessential Spielberg-directed projects starring Ford.

Spielberg’s early works identified him as an acclaimed director of what film genre?

Spielberg became known as a director of science fiction films, also called sci-fi. Some credit Mary Shelley with writing the first truly sci-fi novel - 1818's Frankenstein.

Spielberg directed which 1980s race-themed social drama?

The Color Purple is based on a Pulitzer prize-winning novel. This period film showed the life and hardships of African-American women in rural areas during the pre-civil rights era. The original story was penned by foremost African American writer Alice Walker. The film starred Whoopi Goldberg in a dramatic role, her first film ever.

Another book-to-film project that Spielberg directed was which World War II drama about a young British boy in a Japanese internment camp?

Empire of the Sun was released in 1987. The story is based on the 1984 book by English author J.G. Ballard. The film starred a young Christian Bale in the lead role.

Which Spielberg-directed film is a re-imagination of the story of Peter Pan?

Hook was released in 1991, featuring Dustin Hoffman as Hook. Robin Williams stars as the adult Peter Pan who doesn’t realize who he really is, until he flies back to Neverland. This twist was the biggest re-imagination of the Peter Pan plot, as evident in the film’s tagline, “What if Peter Pan grew up?"

Who portrayed Tinker Bell in Spielberg’s Hook?

The very tall Julia Roberts was a hit-and-miss for audiences as the diminutive Tinker Bell fairy. She actually got a Golden Raspberry Award or a Razzies nomination, a spoof-like award that is given during Academy Awards season to highlight the year's worst in film, in contrast to the Academy’s best. It was rumored that Roberts and Spielberg didn’t work well together on the set.

Which 2016 Spielberg film is based on a Roald Dahl novel?

The 2016 film BFG is about a big, friendly giant, hence the acronym. It was also co-produced by Spielberg. However, for its budget, the film didn't really earn well at the box office.

In 2011, a World War I-themed Spielberg project focused on what sort of creature?

This 2011 film is War Horse, starring Jeremy Irvine and Emily Watson. It's an adaptation of a novel penned by Michael Morpurgo.

Steven Spielberg collaborated with which musical composer for most of his films?

John Williams’ notable musical scores gave Spielberg’s films extra character and personality. Notable examples are the Indiana Jones and Jaws compositions. He also created the musical score for other notable films, like the original Star Wars films and some of the early Harry Potter films. Williams has won many awards for his film scores.

John Williams composed the musical score for a majority of Spielberg’s films, with the exception of which of these?

Only three Spielberg-directed films weren’t scored by Williams: The Color Purple, Bridge of Spies, and his contribution to the 4-part anthology film Twilight Zone: The Movie. The Color Purple’s music was created by Quincy Jones. Thomas Newman created the score for Bridge of Spies, while Jerry Goldsmith worked on the Twilight Zone anthology.

Spielberg's 1979 film, 1941, was written by which of his friends, who would later become a director in his own right?

Robert Zemeckis wrote 1941. Spielberg later served as the executive producer of some of Robert Zemeckis’ films, including the Back To The Future films. Zemeckis is also known for directing innovative hits, such as Who Framed Roger Rabbit and Forrest Gump.

In the early ‘90s, Spielberg adapted which book-to-film story about ancient creatures?

Jurassic Park was released in 1993. It was based on the 1990 novel by Michael Crichton. The popularity of this film story continues today, with newer sequels being released as the story gets updated.

Another World War II-set film directed by Spielberg was which 1998 film that starred Tom Hanks?

Saving Private Ryan was the story of a group of soldiers, tasked to search for a certain Private Ryan. They got the order because Ryan’s three brothers were already killed in combat, so the US Army wanted to save him. The film earned Spielberg an Academy Award for Best Director.

Which popular actress and producer appeared in E.T. as a child?

Drew Barrymore is descended from the Barrymore family, who were iconic Hollywood stars in the early days of film. She was about 5 years old when she starred in E.T. as Gertie. She has also co-starred in a few romantic comedy films with Adam Sandler, like 50 First Dates and The Wedding Singer. Spielberg is actually her godfather.

Which 1993 Spielberg project was about a businessman-turned-hero during the Holocaust?

Schindler’s List is an epic black-and-white Holocaust drama, directed by Spielberg and starring Liam Neeson. It is based on the true story of a German businessman, Oskar Schindler, who secretly saved the lives of many Jews during the Holocaust. The film earned Spielberg his first Academy Award for Best Director.

Which sci-fi film directed by Spielberg starred Tom Cruise as a futuristic police officer of sorts, touted as a future criminal?

Minority Report was released in 2002. It was based on a short story written by acclaimed sci-fi author Philip K. Dick. Spielberg is also an executive producer of the TV series version of the story.

The Terminal, starring Tom Hanks, mostly takes place in what location?

The Terminal is about a man, played by Tom Hanks, who gets stuck at the JFK airport in New York. He is denied entry to the US but he can’t fly back to his home country, since there was a recent military coup. The film came out in 2004.

Which famed French New Wave director apparently appeared in Close Encounters of The Third Kind as a French scientist working for the government?

François Truffaut is renowned as one of the founding figures of the very influential French New Wave (Nouvelle Vague) genre of filmmaking, including his poignant 1959 film, The 400 Blows (Les Quatre Cents Coup). His other notable contributions are Jules Et Jim, Day For Night, and Shoot The Piano Player. Although he also appeared in some films he directed, this was his first acting role in a film directed by another filmmaker.

Who starred in Spielberg’s 2001 sci-fi fantasy film, A.I. Artificial Intelligence?

Haley Joel Osment portrayed the robotic kid programmed to act as a real human boy. The story was based on the premise of the short story Super-Toys Last All Summer Long. The story was written by acclaimed sci-fi writer-editor Brian Aldiss. Osment first became popular as the ghost-seeing kid in The Sixth Sense.

An H.G. Wells alien invasion novel was the basis of which 2005 Spielberg film?

War of the Worlds is about the invasion of a host of UFOs which are war machines. The film focuses more on the invasion and disaster aspect of the story. Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning star, while Morgan Freeman delivers the voice-over narration.

Which 1997 Spielberg film was a black slavery-themed epic aboard a ship?

Amistad is based on events that happened aboard a slave ship called La Amistad during the 1800s. A mutiny is started by the tribesmen, who had been captured to be sold into slavery. The film stars Anthony Hopkins, Morgan Freeman, Djimon Hounsou, and Matthew McConaughey.

Spielberg seems to have a penchant for directing films based on real-life characters and events, like which film that stars Leonardo DiCaprio and Tom Hanks?

Catch Me If You Can was released in 2002. It is about Frank Abagnale’s rise as a con artist during his teenage years in the ‘60s. He posed as a fake pilot hitching rides in Pan Am flights and cashed forged checks. The film was a box-office hit for Spielberg.

Spielberg directed which 2011 animated film that features a popular European comic book character?

The Adventures of Tintin is a wholly 3D computer-animated feature-length film. The story is a composite of the narratives from three comic book albums of the Tintin series, featuring the detective adventures of a boy and his smart dog. Tintin was created by Hergé, a Belgian cartoonist, and was originally published in French.

Which celebrity TV talk show host began her acting career by appearing in Spielberg’s The Color Purple?

Oprah Winfrey started as a journalist before becoming a celebrated talk show host. Winfrey portrayed Sophia in The Color Purple, for which she earned a prestigious Academy Award nomination.

Which 2005 Spielberg espionage thriller was both a critical success and a box-office disappointment?

Munich was released in 2005 and earned many Academy Award nominations. It was set during the 1972 Summer Olympics that took place in Munich, Germany. The story focused on Israeli assassins who were avenging the death of their abducted athletes during the infamous Munich massacre.

Bridge of Spies, a historical Spielberg drama starring Tom Hanks, is set during which wartime era?

Bridge of Spies was co-written by Ethan and Joel Cohen, together with Matt Charman. The story, which is based on real-life events, took place during the 1960s Cold War era. The film was released in 2015.

Spielberg directed which 1989 otherworldly rom-com?

Always is actually a remake of a 1943 film, with modern updates added by Spielberg. It’s about a firefighter pilot who dies and is sent back to earth on a mission. The mission involves getting in touch with the girlfriend he left behind.

Which legendary Hollywood actress made her last film appearance in Spielberg’s Always?

Audrey Hepburn played the role of Hap in Always. She was like the spiritual guide of the dead pilot, played by Richard Dreyfuss. She was also known for her films Sabrina and My Fair Lady.

Spielberg’s production company is named after which short film he directed way back in 1968?

Amblin’ is about a young hippie couple traveling to a beach destination. This film became Spielberg’s ticket to professional work, starting in television. His company, Amblin' Entertainment, is named after this short film.

Which 2012 Spielberg film features one period in the life of a US president?

Lincoln features only a portion of US President Abraham Lincoln’s life. The story focuses on his work to abolish slavery in the US amidst a very divided Congress. Daniel Day-Lewis portrayed the president, earning him an Academy Award for Best Actor.

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