One of the most respected Australian directors of all time, Jim Sharman may be best known for bringing the raucous and hyper sexual Rocky Horror Show from the stage to the screen with 1975’s The Rocky Horror Picture Show. An instant cult classic, The Rocky Horror Picture Show depicts a maniacal Dr. Frank-N-Furter, who is the leader of a group of individuals known as the Transylvanians. Frank-N-Furter lacks any real human connections, and often satisfies his sexual cravings by creating “toys” for his personal pleasure and amusement. Filled with satire and spawning a viewer culture all its own, this film is one of the most beloved and unique pieces to ever hit the screen.
Looking at Jim Sharman’s youth, it’s no surprise that a twisted and creative masterpiece like Rocky Horror would one day follow. Sharman was born in 1945 in Sydney Australia, and spent much of his young life traveling with the circus. Sharman’s love of circus gave birth to an appreciation for showmanship and theatre, leading him to study at the National Institute of Dramatic Art in Sydney. Sharman began directing theatre productions even before his graduation in 1966. By 1970, he found himself directing the stage musical, Hair, which introduced him to set designer Brian Thomson. Thomson and Sharman would go on to work together on a long list of successful theatre shows, ultimately landing both the opportunity to come to London in the mid-1970’s.
Returning to Sydney in the 1980’s, Sharman continued to direct theatre performances and musicals, and later got involved in Opera direction. Still an active director, Sharman is one of the most celebrated theatre directors in Australian history.
An incredible director, Jim Sharman surprisingly has only a few films to his name. Among these are the cult classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and its sequel, Shock Treatment. An accomplished theatre director, Sharman is well-known for bringing Rocky Horror to movie audiences world-wide after directing the theatre predecessor, Rocky Horror Show, on London stages.
Sharman’s career spans decades, directing incredible theatre performances across some of the best stages in Sydney and London. Among his many fine works one will discover Hair, Jesus Christ Superstar, The Lover, Don Giovanni, As You Like It, King Lear, The Threepenny Opera, Death in Venice, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and The Tempest.