On the brink of a career as a film director, Nataasha van Kampen made just one picture – Nocturne (2009), starring her stepfather Mark Rylance, one of Britain’s most gifted Shakespearean actors and the first artistic director of Shakespeare’s Globe theatre in London.
Having attended the Rudolf Steiner School in north London, Van Kampen started her career at the age of 16, at first undertaking work experience at 3 Mills Studios, London’s largest film and television production studios, for Sky.
Independent television company Hewland International then offered her a contract for a television series. She worked on two feature films, both of which were released nationwide – Rollin’ with the Nines (2006), directed by Julian Gilbey, and Outlanders (2007), directed by Dominic Lees.
Deciding that her technical skills needed improvement, Van Kampen next attended the London Film School, where she graduated in 2008. Her graduation piece Nocturne, which she wrote, produced, directed and designed, was a surrealist-inspired film focusing on insomnia and its connections with a troubled psyche. It achieved noteworthy success at the London Young Film Festival and the Moving Image Film Festival in Toronto. She also worked on television commercials and music DVDs.
Van Kampen, who was born in London on February 25, 1984, died on July 1 of a suspected brain haemorrhage on a flight from New York. Several doctors, who were fellow passengers, tried in vain to save her life. She was 28. As a result of her death, Rylance pulled out of the Opening Ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics, where he had been due to recite a passage from The Tempest.