How Peter Jackson made it to the top of the A-List Film Directors in the world.

How Peter Jackson made it to the top of the A-List Film Directors in the world.

The Peter Jackson story is inspiring. He is living proof that anyone from any point of the world can make it big in Hollywood. He has now created three of the biggest films of all times. He made ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogy and won numerous Oscars in the process.

He came from nothing to become a Superstar A List film director. He has shot and post produced all his films in his native New Zealand and made it to the very top of the A list directors and Film Makers in Hollywood. Today he always makes films in his backyard on his terms.

Yet he started with just a hand-held 8 mm camera shooting home movies with his friends. Right from an early age Peter Jackson had a love of movies. When he was a child he saw ‘King Kong’ and he was hooked by the film medium.

How did Peter Jackson end up directing and shooting the film version of “The Lord of the Rings” and ‘King Kong’ and The Hobbit? How did he do it on his terms in his city and become famous and rich as a Superstar Film Director? How did he get US$ 281 Million to make the Lord of the Rings Trilogy.

Peter Jackson had the following in spades.

  1. Passion and love for making Movies. He learned how to make films anyway he could.
  2. The ability to take knock-backs and disappointments and move on to another project or another way of making that film.
  3. The ability to network and meet the right people to get the film made.
  4. The ability always to attract and make a film project, one after the other, till in the early naughties, he was the top film director in Hollywood.

It is fascinating to study how Film Directors make it big. If you are an aspiring filmmaker, you can learn so much about a blow by blow description on how a Filmmaker made his first films and becomes massively successful.

Today, 2020 it is still the same process for an aspiring filmmaker to make it to the top of the Filmmaker list in Hollywood.

  • Study at a film course or film school that is outcome driven and helps you make your first film.
  • Make three short films, self financed, and enter them into Film Festivals. Please see my article about entering Film Festivals. Win Prizes. Get noticed.
  • Network Make Contacts and gain supporters mentors
  • Make a low budget Feature Film, preferably with other people’s money or funded. All else fails make a micro budget feature film on your own money. Enter Film Festivals Win Prizes. Make contacts Gain supporters and Mentors.
  • When you are talented, the powerful people will notice and you will attract opportunity and finance from here and soon you will have millions to make your film.
  • Make a fully financed film with a Star Actor and make it massively successful.
  • Move on to mega budget films, just like Peter Jackson.

It sounds so straight forwards when it is written like this. But it is important to study how specific filmmakers made it. Please read how Peter Jackson made it from young aspiring film maker making his first short films in his back garden to the historical meeting that took place on Friday, 24th July,1998 at New Line office in Hollywood, between Peter Jackson and Bob Shaye.

At the end of the meeting Peter Jackson would have $280 million to make the Lord of the Rings. Find out how now and learn from his story. 

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