Ritchie directed a film in 1995 titled The Hard Case. His first truly successful feature was Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels in 1998. Recalling Quentin Tarantino and The Sting in equal measure, the film was widely praised for its wit. It introduced actor Jason Statham to worldwide audiences.
He followed that up with Snatch (movie) in 2000, another caper comedy, this time backed by a major studio. Its cast featured such Hollywood big names as Brad Pitt, Benecio del Toro, and Dennis Farina. Reviews were also strong for this film.
He is married to Madonna, and they have one child together. Ritchie then began focusing his filmmaking around his famous wife, directing her in both a music video (for the song "What It Feels Like for a Girl," a controversial video that showed Madonna engaging in such senselessly violent acts as running people down with a car) and a short film, "Star", for the popular BMW Films series. Ritchie's next feature, also a vehicle for Madonna, was a remake of the 1960s Lina Wertmuller hit Swept Away. Unfortunately, it was both a critical and commercial disaster that cast a cloud over Ritchie's filmmaking career.
Ritchie's next announced project, depending on the source, is either titled Revolver or Six Shooters, and seems to be a return to the crime genre that cemented his initial popularity.