Peter Jackson (*1961)

Peter Jackson was born in New Zealand on Halloween 1961. His first film, BAD TASTE (1987), was produced on a showstring budget over a period of four years. It eventually became a cult classic and was even shown at the Cannes Film Festival. Jackson's next film, MEET THE FEEBLES (1989), a sort of adult version of The Muppet Show, was even more audacious and outrageous.

a scene from BRAINDEAD (1992)

Jackson's third feature film, the zombie splatter movie BRAINDEAD (1992), finally meant his breakthrough. The commercial success of this film enabled him to direct HEAVENLY CREATURES (1994), an exhilarating psycho drama, that was a deviation from the horror genre, but every bit as dark and brooding. In 1996, Jackson teamed up with Robert Zemeckis to direct THE FRIGHTENERS (1996), another horror comedy, but this time with expensive digital effects.
In the meantime Jackson had completed the mock documentary FORGOTTEN SILVER (1995), which detailed the re-discovery of the oeuvre of a (fictional) master filmmaker. In 1997, Jackson again collaborated with Zemeckis on the latter's excellent science-fiction drama CONTACT. From then on Jackson worked on the LORD OF THE RINGS-trilogy, the first part of which was released in December 2001. Peter Jackson usually cowrites his films with Frances Walsh.
Early (minor) screen credits not listed below include the television series WORZEL GUMMIDGE DOWN UNDER (1986-1987), for which Jackson did the special effects (and Fran Walsh wrote some episodes), the TV war drama 1914 ALL OUT (1987), which Jackson edited. In 1994, Jackson reportedly worked as a project manager for a special effects company on HERCULES AND THE LOST KINGDOM (1994), one of five TV adventures produced by Sam Raimi, followed by the series in 1995.



The Valley (1976; a 20m. short)
Bad Taste (1987; dir, coscr, coedit, cin, prod, act, sfx)
Meet the Feebles (1989; dir, coscr, coprod, cosfx, cam op)
Valley of the Stereos (1992; coprod; a 15m. short)
Braindead (1992; dir, coscr, act, cosfx)
Heavenly Creatures (1994; dir, coscr, coprod, act)
Jack Brown Genius (1994; coscr, coprod)
Forgotten Silver (1996; codir, coscr, coprod, act; 53m. mockumentary)
The Frighteners (1996; dir, coscr, coprod, act)
Contact (1997; cosfx)
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring (2001; dir, coscr, coprod; based on J.R.R. Tolkien's novel)
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers (2002; dir, coscr, coprod; based on J.R.R. Tolkien's novel)
The Long and Short of It (2003; act, exec prod; a 5m. short)
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003; dir, coscr, coprod; based on J.R.R. Tolkien's novel)
King Kong (2005; dir, coscr, coprod)

© Ron Altman (last update on 04/19/2006)