Biography of Jocelyn Moorhouse

Jocelyn Moorhouse is an Australian film director, best known for her films Proof, How to Make an American Quilt, A Thousand Acres, and The Dressmaker. She has also collaborated with her husband, film director P. J. Hogan, on such films as Muriel's Wedding and Mental. In addition to her work in film, she has written a memoir, Unconditional Love: A Memoir of Filmmaking and Motherhood.

Moorhouse was born in Melbourne, Australia, and attended the Australian Film, Television and Radio School. Afterward, she began directing films and television series, including c/o The Bartons, The Flying Doctors, Out of the Blue, A Place to Call Home, and The Humpty Dumpty Man. Her first film was Proof, in 1991, starring Hugo Weaving, Genevieve Picot, and Russell Crowe. The plot follows a blind photographer, and the film brought Moorhouse critical acclaim. Her first American film was How to Make an American Quilt, starring Anne Bancroft, Winona Ryder, and Alfre Woodard. Next came A Thousand Acres in 1997, starring Jessica Lange and Michelle Pfeiffer. It was not until 2015 that she directed her next film, The Dressmaker, starring Kate Winslet, Judy David, and Liam Hemsworth.

Moorhouse's first film, Proof, won six Australian Film Institute Awards, a Golden Camera-Special Mention Award in Cannes, and the Bronze Award in Tokyo. In an interview about The Dressmaker, Moorhouse said, "I’m very drawn to finding stories about women. I love working with actresses. I am a woman and therefore, I want to tell stories about what it’s like to be a woman and the sort of things that happen in a woman’s life and the domestic and hidden battles we face. People don’t write about the emotional wars we go through. As a female filmmaker, I’m naturally drawn to these stories, and I feel I have a duty to be making films that further the world’s understanding about what it is to be a woman. I really want to do that, I like doing it."

Study Guides on Works by Jocelyn Moorhouse