Alexander Payne (born February 10, 1961) is an American film director, screenwriter and producer.
He is best known for the films Citizen Ruth (1996), Election (1999), About Schmidt (2002), Sideways (2004), The Descendants (2011), Nebraska (2013) and Downsizing (2017). He is noted for his dark humor and satirical depictions of contemporary American society.
Payne is a two-time winner of the Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, and a three-time nominee of the Academy Award for Best Director. In 2017, Metacritic ranked Payne 2nd on its list of the 25 best film directors of the 21st century.