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Jane Campion

Jane Campion

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Bright Star DVD From acclaimed director Jane Campion comes this gorgeously photographed,... more info $14.99was $14.99 Buy Now

An Angel At My Table: The Criterion... Kerry Fox is luminous as poet Janet Frame in "The Piano" (1993) director Jane... more info $25.99was $39.95 Buy Now

Sweetie: The Criterion Collection... Though she went on to create a string of brilliant films, Jane Campion will... more info $25.99was $39.95 Buy Now

The Henry James Collection... Return to the past with a Henry James movie marathon. The BBC brings acclaimed... more info $49.98was $49.98 Buy Now

Also Known As: Died:
Born: April 30, 1954 Cause of Death:
Birth Place: Wellington, NZ Profession: director, screenwriter, camera operator, actress, director of photography, songwriter, editor

Biography CLOSE THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

An unflinching director who often showcased a complex and erotic side of women rarely seen in conventional Hollywood movies, Jane Campion emerged from her native Australia as a celebrated and decorated auteur. Following her award-winning days as a student filmmaker, Campion arrived on the scene with "Sweetie" (1990), a stylish and disturbing look at the destruction of a family by a psychologically disturbed sibling. But it was her multi-award winning romantic drama, "The Piano" (1993) that introduced her to a worldwide audience. Passionate, moving and unrepentantly erotic, the film was lauded for its lush visualization of the complex emotions of a woman's sexual awakening. The film earned many awards, including an Academy Award for Campion's screenplay, though the director had great difficulty repeating her success. In fact, several of her subsequent films were rather uneven - though never dull - despite her continued exploration of the power of female sexuality, as she did with "The Portrait of a Lady" (1996), "Holy Smoke" (1999) and "In the Cut" (2003). While some critics may have deemed her work as polarizing, a vast majority praised her originality and willingness to push boundaries, which...

An unflinching director who often showcased a complex and erotic side of women rarely seen in conventional Hollywood movies, Jane Campion emerged from her native Australia as a celebrated and decorated auteur. Following her award-winning days as a student filmmaker, Campion arrived on the scene with "Sweetie" (1990), a stylish and disturbing look at the destruction of a family by a psychologically disturbed sibling. But it was her multi-award winning romantic drama, "The Piano" (1993) that introduced her to a worldwide audience. Passionate, moving and unrepentantly erotic, the film was lauded for its lush visualization of the complex emotions of a woman's sexual awakening. The film earned many awards, including an Academy Award for Campion's screenplay, though the director had great difficulty repeating her success. In fact, several of her subsequent films were rather uneven - though never dull - despite her continued exploration of the power of female sexuality, as she did with "The Portrait of a Lady" (1996), "Holy Smoke" (1999) and "In the Cut" (2003). While some critics may have deemed her work as polarizing, a vast majority praised her originality and willingness to push boundaries, which demonstrated that Campion remained a daring and provocative filmmaker all throughout her career.

VIEW THE FULL BIOGRAPHY

Filmographyclose complete filmography

DIRECTOR:

1.
  Bright Star (2009)
3.
4.
  In the Cut (2003) Director
5.
  Holy Smoke (1999) Director
6.
  Portrait of A Lady, The (1996) Director
7.
  The Piano (1993) Director
8.
  An Angel At My Table (1990) Director
9.
  Sweetie (1989) Director
10.
  Two Friends (1986) Director

CAST: (feature film)

2.
 Audition, The (1989)
4.
 Intimate Portrait: Holly Hunter (2000) Interviewee
VIEW THE FULL FILMOGRAPHY

Milestones close milestones

:
Moved to London after graduating from college where she worked as an assistant to a documentary filmmaker
1979:
Directed first short film, "Tissues," while a student at Sydney College of the Arts
:
Attended the Australian Film Television and Radio School
1982:
Made first short film, "Peel"; also wrote and edited
1983:
Directed the short film, "Passionless Moments"
1984:
Directed the short film "After Hours" for the Women's Film Unit in Australia
1984:
Shot her thesis film, "Girls Own Story"
1985:
Directed first Australian TV-movie, "Two Friends"
1989:
Made feature directing debut with "Sweetie"; also co-wrote with Gerald Lee
1990:
Helmed second feature, "Angel at My Table"
1990:
Acted opposite her mother Edith Armstrong in the comedy short, "The Audition"; directed by her sister Anne Campion
1993:
Received International acclaim for directing "The Piano"; also wrote
:
Formed Big Shell Films with her husband Colin Englert
1996:
Directed Nicole Kidman in "The Portrait of a Lady"; based on a Henry James novel
1999:
Directed and co-wrote (with sister Anna) "Holy Smoke"; starred Harvey Keitel and Kate Winslet
2003:
Directed Meg Ryan in the erotic thriller, "In the Cut"; also wrote
2008:
Wrote and directed the 17-minute segment, "The Water Diary" for an eight-part feature titled "8"
2009:
Debuted her film "Bright Star" at the Cannes Film Festival
VIEW ALL MILESTONES

Education

Victoria University: - 1975
Sydney College of the Arts: - 1979
Australian Film Television and Radio School: - 1984

Notes

"I'm really interested in issues of love and superstition--family love, romantic love, reality and illusion, New Age-ism, misconceptions of New Age-ism. . . I'm interested in all those things. But when I write, I don't think like this. I just think, 'What would be fun to have happen next?' I think in a playful way, and then later I try to examine what's happened." --Jane Campion in PREMIERE, March 1990

"I think she really writes about what is exquisite in human beings but not necessarily about the perfection. She writes about the things that are hard to come to terms with in us and those things may be good and the may have elements of evil, or they may have elements of desire." --Holly Hunter, on the the lyrical writings of Jane Campion, quoted in FILMMAKER, Fall 1993

"Jane is Isabel Archer--but she's also Madame Merle. She's reasonably manipulative. She is intensely competitive. She has always managed to get what she's wanted. She will do absolutely what she wants to do, in her life and in her movies" --"The Portrait of a Lady" star Nicole Kidman on her friend Jane Campion, quoted in "Heroine Chic" by Howard Feinstein in VANITY FAIR, December 1996

"Here is the key to her personality and way of working--the conspiracy of great friendship that has its own secrets." --actor Richard E Grant quoted in VANITY FAIR, December 1996

Companions close complete companion listing

companion:
Gerard Lee. Director, screenwriter. Co-directed "Passionless Moments" with Campion and co-wrote screenplay for "Sweetie"; met at film school.
companion:
Billy MacKinnon. Producer, screenwriter. Scottish; younger brother of director Gillies MacKinnon; co-producer of "Sweetie" and script editor on "The Piano"; together in late 1980s to early 1990s.
husband:
Colin Englert. Director, producer. Served as second-unit director for "The Piano" (1993).

Family close complete family listing

father:
Richard Campion. Director. Co-founder of the New Zealand Players (a theater company) with Edith Campion; divorced after nearly 40 years of marriage.
mother:
Edith Armstrong. Actor. Co-founded the New Zealand Players; was both an heiress and an orphan; met Campion's father at university; the two later studied at the Old Vic together before founding theatre company; divorced after nearly 40 years of marriage.
sister:
Anna Campion. Actor, director. Older; born c. 1952.
brother:
Michael Campion. Born c. 1961.
son:
Jasper Englert. Born in June 1993; delivered by emergency Caesarean section; died twelve days after birth; father, Colin Englert.
daughter:
Alice Englert. Born c. 1994; father, Colin Englert.
VIEW COMPLETE FAMILY LISTING

Bibliography close complete biography

"Holy Smoke" Miramax/Hyperion

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