In his career's nascency, director Daniel Attias served as an assistant to Steven Spielberg on "E. T." and "Twilight Zone: The Movie," two films whose creature-driven fantasy helped prepare him for his own directorial debut with the Stephen-King-based werewolf chiller, "Silver Bullet" (1985). Following release of the film, Attias began directing exclusively for television, making his initial mark on the medium with episodes of popular series such as "Miami Vice," "Beauty and the Beast," and "21 Jump Street." By the '90s, he became a mainstay of network prime-time, instrumental in developing the familiar quirks and rhythms of everything from the lightly surrealistic dramedies "Ally McBeal" and "Northern Exposure" to the youth-oriented soaps "Party of Five," "Melrose Place," and "Beverly Hills, 90210." While Attias brought his genre roots to several standout installments of Joss Whedon's acclaimed action-fantasy "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," his vibrant work on J J. Abrams's spy series "Alias" proved to be a forerunner of the disciplined, quasi-cinematic style with which he later imbued such highly celebrated HBO series as "Deadwood," "The Wire," "The Sopranos," and "Six Feet Under." Attias's 2000s oeuvre has been largely dominated by the pay-cable channel, but he frequently returns to his former home-base at FOX to helm episodes for such series as "House, M.D." and the improv-driven sitcom "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia," on which he displays a rare loose approach.