Oct. 31st, 1961
Pukerua Bay, North Island, New Zealand
5' 6 1/2"
Peter Jackson's Main TV Roles
Main Movie Roles
Guest TV Roles[none found]
Peter Jackson was born as an only child in a small coast-side town in New Zealand in 1961. When a friend of his parents bought him a super 8mm movie camera (because she saw how much he enjoyed taking photos), the then eight-year-old Peter instantly grabbed the thing to start recording his own movies, which he made with his friends. They were usually short, but they already had the spectacular trademark that would make Jackson famous: impressive special effects, made at a very low cost. For example, for his film "World War Two" which he made as a teenager, he used to simulate a firing gun by punching little holes into the celluloid, so that, once projected, the gun gave the impression of displaying a small fire. Jackson's first step towards the more serious filmmaking came with an entry in a local contest to stimulate amateur and children's film. For this film, he used stop-motion animation to create a monster that ruins a city in the style of Ray Harryhausen. Unfortunately, he didn't win. When Jackson was 22, he embarked on an movie making-adventure that would change his life. This film, Bad Taste (1987), was begun as any other Jackson film, in an amateuristic style, at a low budget and using friends and local people to star in his film. Jackson himself did nearly everything in the movie, he directed, produced, filmed and starred in it, in a number of roles, amongst them that of the hero, "Derek". And everything was filmed on a second-hand, $250 camera. It took Jackson and his friends four years to complete the movie. What had started out as an joke in a group of friends, then became a cult-classic. A friend of Jackson who was working in the movie industry convinced him the film had commercial prospects and arranged for it to be shown at the Cannes film festival, where it won a lot of acclaim, as well as a number of prizes. The movie soon became a hit because of its bizarre humor and overdose of special-effects, some realistic, some hilarious because of their amateuristic look. After the success of Bad Taste (1987), Jackson became recognized as a director and the door to fame and fortune was opened. He gave up his job at a local photographer's shop and became a well-known director of horror-movies, after the success of his first professionally made movie, Braindead (1992).
- Crowned the most powerful man in Hollywood by ranking #1 on Premiere's 2005 Power 50 List. It is his first #1 ranking. Had ranked #6 in 2004.
- Owns two houses in Wellington, New Zealand.
- Is among an elite group of 7 directors who have won Best Picture, Best Director & Best Screenplay (Orig/Adapted) for the same film. In 2004 he won all three for _The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)_ (qv). The other directors are 'Billy Wilder' (qv), 'Leo McCarey' (qv), 'Francis Ford Coppola' (qv), 'James L. Brooks' (qv) and 'Joel Coen' (qv) and 'Ethan Coen' (qv) (the brothers co-produced, co-directed and co-wrote _No Country for Old Men (2007)_ (qv) with each other).
- Three of his collaborators have had connections to the material being filmed, outside the context of the film being made. 'Ian Holm' (qv), whom he cast as Bilbo in The Lord of the Rings, was cast because he had played Frodo in the BBC radio adaptation. That adaptation was written by 'Brian Sibley' (qv), who is a cousin of his wife, 'Fran Walsh' (qv). In _Heavenly Creatures (1994)_, 'Kate Winslet' (qv) plays Juliet Hulme, who would later be known as real-life mystery novelist 'Anne Perry (I)' (qv). Winslet has a sister, 'Anna Winslet' (qv), who appears as Dora in _The Cater Street Hangman (1998) (TV)_ (qv), which was based on one of Perry's novels.
- Has been referred to by 'Fran Walsh' (qv) as being a hobbit himself, due to his physical stature, his tendency to go barefoot, and the fact that he is swarthy (in Walsh's words, "furry").
- Owner of production companies WingNut Films, Weta Limited and Three Foot Six.
- One of few directors to be offered the chance of writing and directing sequels to many famous horror franchises. He was offered _Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre III (1990)_ (qv), _Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991)_ (qv), _Freddy vs. Jason (2003)_ (qv), _I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998)_ (qv), _Exorcist: The Beginning (2004)_ (qv), _Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)_ (qv), _Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992)_ (qv) and _Child's Play 3 (1991)_ (qv).
- Was invested as a Companion Of The New Zealand Order Of Merit [CNZM] by the Governor-General of New Zealand in March 2002.