More Jane Campion Bios & Profiles
Biography #2 (for In the Cut)Jane Campion, born in New Zealand and working between Australia and New Zealand, won international renown for her critically acclaimed film The Piano, which starred Holly Hunter, Sam Neill and Harvey Keitel. The film received more than 30 international awards, including the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, nine Academy Award nominations and three Oscars, including Best Screenplay for Campion. In addition, Campion received awards for Best Director from The New York Film Critics Circle, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association and the Australian Film Critics. She also received nominations as Best Director from the Directors Guild of America, BAFTA and Great Britain's Guild of Regional Film Writers. The film also won Best Picture from the Australian Film Institute.
More recently, Campion directed and co-wrote with her sister Anna, Holy Smoke, starring Harvey Keitel and Kate Winslet. In 1996, Campion directed Portrait of a Lady based on the Henry James novel with Nicole Kidman as the lead actor. The film was screened at the Venice Film Festival, was nominated for two Academy Awards and garnered the Francesco Pasinetti Award for Best Film by the National Union of Film Journalists.
Campion graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology from Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand then pursued a Diploma of Fine Arts at Chelsea School of Arts in London, completing her studies at Sydney College of Arts where she majored in painting. Subsequently, Campion decided to study film at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School in Sydney.
She made her directorial debut with the short film Peel, which auspiciously went on to win the Palme D'Or at the Cannes Film Festival. She directed numerous award-winning short films before making her feature debut with Sweetie, which premiered in competition at Cannes. The film, a striking and original portrait of a troubled family, won the George Sadoul Prize in 1989 for Best Foreign Film, the Los Angeles Film Critics' New Generation Award, the American Spirit of Independence Award for Best Foreign Feature and the Australian Critics Award for Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress.
Campion followed this with An Angel At My Table, an epic dramatization of the searingly emotional autobiography of author Janet Frame. The film had its premiere at The Venice Film Festival in 1990 where it won seven prizes, including The Silver Lion. It won the American Spirit of Independence Award, garnered prizes at the Toronto and Berlin Film Festivals and was voted most popular film at the 1990 Sydney Film Festival.
Other honors and awards Campion has received for her talent include the Byron Kennedy Award for excellence and contribution to Australian cinema, Hollywood's Women in Film Icon Award, an Honorary Doctorate of Literature from Victoria University of Wellington and a 2001 WIN Award at the Winfemme Film Festival, USA.