director, producer, actor
Trained at Sydney's National Institute of the Dramatic Arts, Luhrmann began his career in front of the camera. He appeared opposite Judy Davis in Winter of Our Dreams (1982) before launching the stage production of Strictly Ballroom in 1986. His other theatrical projects include La Bohème (1990). He adapted Strictly Ballroom for film in 1992. The offbeat yet exhilarating film captivated audiences at the Cannes Film Festival and established Luhrmann as an up-and-coming director with a flair for luxurious visuals. In his next outing, William Shakespeare's Romeo + Juliet (1996), Luhrmann reimagined the classic as a hyperkinetic post-modern tragedy and set it at the fictional Verona Beach, with Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes as the doomed, Versace-clad couple. In 2001, Luhrmann reappeared with another splashy post-modern love story, Moulin Rouge. Nicole Kidman starred as a tubercular dancer and prostitute at the famed 19th-century cabaret and Ewan McGregor played the poet in love with her. The film earned Best Picture and Best Actress Oscar nominations. Luhrmann, however, was snubbed in the directing category.