Sir Peter Jackson (1961-) is one of the most acclaimed directors working in film today. His outstanding Lord Of The Rings trilogy, which has been one of modern cinema's most profitable and noteworthy achievements, has started a tourist trade and placed him alongside the legends of cinema. Before this commercial breakthrough, however, Jackson was busy serving his duties as the "Prince of Splatter". Heavily influenced by George Romero (he saw Dawn Of The Dead four times in a row at the cinema when it came out), Jackson started his career by making a number of zombie-themed horror movies that effectively made him an icon of the genre .

His first feature, Bad Taste (1987), was a homage to the great Romero. The film's plot revolved around a sleepy town being overtaken by cannibalistic aliens from space. These intruders had a cunning scheme to use human flesh as their new and delicious ingredient for their intergalactic fast-food chains. With flamboyantly chaotic direction from the wicked Jackson, the film featured a series of entertainingly gruesome set pieces, including: the heroes (played by Jackson's close friends) eating alien vomit; the aliens being mutilated via chainsaws; spinal cords being detached from bodies; and humans being marinated for fast-food preperation. Aside from the grisly carnage, the film featured offensive - not to mention side-splitting - humor as well, which would be evident in all of Jackson's following splatter films. Jackson himself played a zombie-of-sorts in the movie as Derek, the bizarrely hilarious alien hunter who ties a belt around his head to keep his brains from falling out of his scalp. Jackson's effective blend of outrageous gore and offbeat humor made the movie a cult classic of 80's horror.

After Jackson made Meet The Feebles (1989), a comedy/horror about a demented and sleazy puppet show, he decided to go back to his zombie roots and, in 1992, made the mother of all gore films: a 100min long epic titled Braindead. Jackson broke new ground with Braindead (released in America as Dead Alive). Even though countless zombie splatters, graphic slashers, video nasties and cannibal films had come in the past, Jackson simply took gore to a whole new level with this film. The movie featured the most blood and guts ever seen in a horror film (5 gallons of blood were being pumped per second in the final scene alone). The film's outstanding set-pieces involved ears being devoured; dogs being eaten; a live set of moving organs; a man being stuffed into a giant zombie's womb; party guests being massacred by an army of zombies; a chimpanzee being torn limb from limb by a Rat-Monkey and the film featured deaths via lawnmowers, garden ornaments, blenders, knives and umbilical cords. In short, the outstanding shocker remains practically unsurpassed in its field.

Jackson has not made a single splatter film after Braindead; instead, he has focused upon the rather more mainstream horror of films such as Heavenly Creatures (1994), The Frighteners (1996), King Kong (2005) and The Lovely Bones (2009).

External Links:

Peter Jackson at the Internet Movie Database

The official Peter Jackson fanclub

In-depth interview about King Kong and future projects

Peter Jackson at FEARnet

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