Filmmaker Nick Broomfield
Nick Broomfield (London, 1948) acquired a reputation with his strong presence in his films, making the creative process part of the documentaries. In The Leader, His Driver and the Driver's Wife (1991) for instance, he showed his futile attempts to interview Eugène Terre'Blanche, the founder and leader of the far-right Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging.
Broomfield studied law at Cardiff and political science at Essex University before going on to study film at the National Film School. As a documentary maker he was initially influenced by the observational style of filmmakers like Frederick Wiseman and D.A. Pennebaker. More or less by accident, through an experiment while making Driving Me Crazy (1988), he developed his own style in which he places himself in the story. Broomfield likes to focus his camera on public figures. He made his most famous documentary Kurt & Courtney (1998) about Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love, without ever having spoken to them. A few years earlier he tried to interview British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and recorded the process in Tracking Down Maggie (1994). Race and class issues also often have his attention, like in Too White for Me (1992) or Proud to be British (1972). The British filmmaker likes to look for the dark side of people and society, preferably in a somewhat light-footed way - see his view on fetish sex. In 1998 IDFA presented a retrospective of his work.