Joseph H. Lewis (April 6, 1907-August 30, 2000), a B-movie director with a sense of style, always strove for excellence, no matter how cheap the film. Even at the dawn of his career (1937-1940), when he was directing inexpensive, forgettable westerns, he earned the derogatory nickname "Wagon-Wheel Joe" from the studio editors because of his love for using wagon-wheels to construct interesting visual compositions within the frame.
Although he worked with both Bela Lugosi (The Invisible Ghost) and Lionel Atwill in early '40's horror, he is best known for his work in film noir from the late 40's and the '50's. His masterpiece is Gun Crazy (1949), a dark romance about gun-obsession which is also one of the earliest and best uses of location photography in Hollywood.
Toward the end of his career, he worked in television, directing episodes of The Rifleman, Bonanza, The Big Valley, Gunsmoke as well as the pilot for Branded.