Spierig brothers

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Michael and Peter Spierig
Spierig Brothers Compiled.jpg
Peter Spierig (left) and Michael Spierig standing with Ethan Hawke (right)
Born (1976-04-29) 29 April 1976 (age 38)
Buchholz, Germany
Nationality Australian
Other names Spierig Brothers
Occupation Film directors, producers, writers
Years active 2003–present
Home town Brisbane, Australia

Identical twin brothers Michael Spierig and Peter Spierig (Listeni/sprɪɡ/; born 29 April 1976), known together professionally as the Spierig Brothers, are German-born Australian film directors, producers and writers.[1][2]

Peter and Michael made their directing debut in 2003 with Undead, and rose to fame with their second film Daybreakers (2010) starring Ethan Hawke and Willem Dafoe, for which they won their country's top prize for Best Visual Effects at the Australian Film Institute Awards. They write, direct and produce their films together, and are heavily involved in the editing, sound and visual effects of all their works.

Their most recent film, Predestination, based on the science fiction short story "—All You Zombies—" by Robert A. Heinlein recently opened at SXSW in March 2014. It was co-written and co-directed by the twins, and was filmed in Australia during Spring of 2013. It stars Ethan Hawke, Sarah Snook and Noah Taylor. The film was positively received by the critics including the influential Variety, The Guardian, and IGN Movies.[3]

Early Life and Education[edit]

Peter and Michael Spierig were born on 29 April 1976 in Buchholz, Germany to parents John and Marianne (née Nierle) Spierig. The identical twins were four years old when their parents decided to move to Sydney, Australia where they spent their childhood. The family then moved to Brisbane in the late 80s where the twins continued their high school and college education. Both Peter and Michael earned their Bachelor's Degree from Queensland College of Art (QCA) where Michael majored in Graphic design and Peter in Film and Television.

Early career[edit]

When they were children, Peter and Michael developed a fascination with filmmaking after discovering their father's video camera at age 10. They directed their first short film at the age of 12 which mainly consisted of blowing up teddy bears in their backyard using fireworks.

Throughout high school and college, the twins kept directing short films, many of which were featured in local film festivals and film awards ceremonies. The twins earned over 15 different awards for their short films. Their work eventually caught the attention of Queensland's foremost commercial director Dick Marks, who subsequently hired the brothers to direct television commercials. Peter and Michael ended up jointly directing over sixty television commercials for a large list of clients including Coke, Universal, Myer, Lend Lease, Energex, and Telstra, to name a few.

While working in the advertising industry, Peter and Michael continued to write and direct short films. Their final short film The Big Picture went on to screen and win awards at several prestigious national and international film festivals including Rotterdam International Film Festival.[citation needed] After making over fifteen short films and dozens of television commercials, the Spierig Brothers finally ventured into feature film production in early 2000.

Film career[edit]

Peter and Michael created their first film, Undead, a low-budget zombie horror-comedy film, after they agreed on pooling together their life savings.[4]

"Undead" screened at 17 major film festivals, including Edinburgh, Montreal, Toronto, Sitges, Berlin, Amsterdam and Puchon. At the Melbourne International Film Festival, the International Federation of Film Critics awarded "Undead" the prestigious Fipresci Award. The film was sold to 41 countries, and was released in the US and Canada by Lions Gate Entertainment, who developed a close relationship with Peter and Michael, and backed their second production "Daybreakers."

Their second feature film Daybreakers starred two-time Academy Award nominee Ethan Hawke, Willem Dafoe, Sam Neill, Claudia Karvan, Vince Colosimo, Michael Dorman, and Isabel Lucas. The film was released in the United States on 2,500 screens in January 2010, and has gone on to gross more than $65 million worldwide.

The Spierig brothers's third film is the action sci-fi thriller Predestination based on the science fiction short story '"—All You Zombies—" by Robert A. Heinlein. The film stars Ethan Hawke and Sarah Snook, and includes an appearance by Noah Taylor.[5] The story recounts that of a detective from a covert government agency (Hawke) who embarks on an intricate series of time-travel journeys in order to catch a master criminal and ensure his own existence. After its premiere at SXSW on 8 March 2014, the film received many positive reviews including Variety, The Guardian, and IGN Movies.[6] The film is scheduled to be released later in the year.

Filmography[edit]

Feature films[edit]

Year Film Credited as Studio
Director Producer Writer Other
2000 The Big Picture Yes Yes Yes
2003 Undead Yes Yes Yes Editor
Visual Effects
Sound Design
Lions Gate Entertainment
2010 Daybreakers Yes No Yes Visual Effects
2014 Predestination Yes Yes Yes Visual Effects
Music (By Peter Spierig)
TBD

Awards and Nominations[edit]

Year Film Award
2003 Undead Fipresci Award at the International Federation of Film Critics
2010 Daybreakers Australia's top prize for Best Visual Effects at the Australian Film Institute Awards

References[edit]

External links[edit]