Jane Campion made film history on Sunday, Mar. 27th when she became the third-ever woman to win the Best Director awards at the Oscars. The 67-year-old auteur earned her “Best Achievement in Directing” trophy for her Western drama The Power of The Dog, which stars Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, and Jesse Plemons. The critically-acclaimed movie led the 2022 Oscars with a whopping total of 12 nominees, including the coveted ‘Best Picture’ nomination. Find out everything you need to know about Jane and her movie career here!
1. Jane won her first Oscar in 1994
Jane is no stranger to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, but it has been almost 30 years since she was last nominated for the award show. The director took home her first Academy Award in 1994, when her 1993 movie The Piano won the “Best Writing, Screenplay Written Directly For The Screen” award. The Piano is a period piece about a mute Scottish woman (Holly Hunter) who moves to the New Zealand frontier in an arranged marriage with a frontiersman (Sam Neill). The movie also stars Harvey Keitel and Anna Paquin in her first on-screen appearance.
2. She’s been nominated five times for two of her movies
Between The Power of the Dog and The Piano, Jane has received five Oscar nods throughout her career. Aside from her Best Original Screenplay win, Jane was also nominated for Best Director at the 1994 awards. For Power of the Dog, Jane received her second Best Director nomination as well as a “Best Adapted Screenplay” and Best Motion Picture nominations, per IMDb.
3. She’s directed eight movies throughout her career
While there were large gaps between her two Academy Award nominations, Jane has been a consistent voice in the movie world! She’s written many of the movies she’s directed, and become a producer as she’s continued her career. She followed up The Piano with an adaptation of Henry James’ 1881 book The Portrait of a Lady, which starred Nicole Kidman, John Malkovich, and Barbara Hershey. Her other movies include 1999’s Holy Smoke, which featured Kate Winslet and Harvey Keitel once again. She also directed Meg Ryan, Mark Ruffalo, and Jennifer Jason Leigh in 2003’s In The Cut.
4. Her daughter Alice Englert is an actress
Jane was married to Colin Englert, whom she collaborated with on The Piano and The Portrait of a Lady, from 1992 to 2001. Colin was the second unit director to Jane on both of those movies. The pair had a son in 1993, who sadly died less than two weeks after he was born. In 1994, Jane had a daughter Alice Englert, who has since gone on to be an actress herself. She made her debut in her mom’s 2006 short The Water Diary, but the Australian actress has carved out her own career in the entertainment industry. She starred in the 2013 film Beautiful Creatures and the 2012 movie Ginger and Rosa. She did later work with her mom again on The Power of the Dog, and she stars in the TV series Dangerous Liaisons, which is currently in post-production, via IMDb.
5. She’s also worked made short films and TV shows.
Aside from major motion pictures, Jane has also directed a variety of shorts and has begun delving into television. Like many directors, her early work were more short films, with her 1982 debut Peel being a short film. She’s kept doing some short-form work after getting her Oscar, including doing segments for the 2007 flick To Each His Own Cinema (where she directed “The Lady Bug”) and the 2008 movie 8 (where she directed “The Water Diary”). She made her first venture to TV in 2013, when she wrote, produced and co-directed the mini-series Top of the Lake, which follows the mysterious disappearance of a 12-year-old girl in New Zealand. She even returned for the followup Top of the Lake: China Girl.