Andrew Dominik

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Andrew Dominik
Andrew Dominik 2012.jpg
Dominik at the Killing Them Softly Australian Premiere in September 2012
Born (1967-10-07) 7 October 1967 (age 54)
Wellington, New Zealand
Alma materSwinburne Film School
OccupationFilm director, film producer, screenwriter
Years active2000–present

Andrew Dominik (born 7 October 1967) is an Australian film director and screenwriter. He has directed the crime film Chopper (2000), the Western drama film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007), and the neo-noir crime film Killing Them Softly (2012). He has also directed the documentary film One More Time with Feeling (2016) and two episodes of the Netflix series Mindhunter in 2019.

Early life and career[edit]

Born in Wellington, New Zealand, Andrew Dominik has lived in Australia since he was two years old. He graduated from Melbourne's Swinburne Film School in 1988.

Chopper (2000)[edit]

His career in films began in 2000 when he directed Chopper based on notorious Australian criminal Mark Brandon "Chopper" Read, starring Eric Bana and Simon Lyndon.[1] Chopper received generally positive reviews,[2] and Bana in particular was widely praised for his intense portrayal of Chopper. The Australian Film Institute awarded the film with Best Director (Dominik), Best Actor (Bana), and Best Supporting Actor (Lyndon).[3]

The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford (2007)[edit]

His next film was The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, starring Brad Pitt and Casey Affleck, based on the novel of the same name which he came across in a second-hand bookstore.[4] The film explores the peculiar relationship between Jesse James and his eventual assassin Robert Ford. Pitt was a big fan of Dominik's first feature Chopper, and had hoped to collaborate with the filmmaker in the future, especially when Pitt had the chance to work with Chopper star Eric Bana in Troy. Pitt contacted the director, and with a big star interested to lead his new film, Dominik was therefore able to get Warner Bros. to finance the production.

Principal shooting in Canada was completed in 2005, though The Assassination's 2006 release was delayed to a fall 2007 release, largely due to studio interference with the film's editing process.[5] Dominik and Pitt were pulling for a less quick-paced and more contemplative cut of the film while the studio wanted "less contemplation and more action". There were reportedly more than a dozen edited versions of the film at one time fighting to be the final cut, the longest version being over four hours.[6] The disputes during post-production lasted for over a year before a final version was settled upon. Over an hour of scenes were deleted for the theatrical version, but Dominik remarked he was still very proud of the theatrical version of the film.[7] The film garnered two Academy Award nominations: Best Cinematography (Deakins) and Best Supporting Actor (Affleck).

Killing Them Softly (2012)[edit]

Dominik reteamed with Brad Pitt in their second collaboration (after The Assassination of Jesse James) in a thriller/dark comedy based on George V. Higgins' Boston-set crime novel Cogan's Trade.[8] The film was renamed Killing Them Softly. Shooting began in January 2011 and wrapped in May 2011.[9] The film competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.[10][11] and was released through the Weinstein Company.

One More Time with Feeling (2016)[edit]

In 2016, Dominik completed One More Time with Feeling, a documentary about his friend Nick Cave and the emotional consequences of the tragic death of Cave's son.[12] The film premiered at the 2016 Venice Film Festival. The critical aggregator website Metacritic awarded the film a score of 91, indicating "universal acclaim".[13]

Previously attached projects[edit]

In 2003, Paramount Pictures approached Dominik and offered him to direct an adaptation of Alfred Bester's 1953 novel The Demolished Man, but as time passed, the project eventually became stuck in development hell when there were disagreements about the screenplay.[14][15]

By 2003, Dominik had also written an adapted screenplay for The Killer Inside Me, an acclaimed noir novel by Jim Thompson, and was at one point considered to direct it, but dropped out.[16] Michael Winterbottom eventually directed the 2010 film.

In 2007, Cormac McCarthy's Cities of the Plain was in development with James Franco starring.[17][18]

In a 2008 interview, Dominik stated that he has interest in adapting Jim Thompson's Pop. 1280.

In 2010, Dominik was writing a script for an American remake of the 2006 French thriller Tell No One. It was unclear if he intended to direct the film.[19]


In the 2012 Sight & Sound poll of the greatest films of all time, Dominik chose Apocalypse Now, Badlands, Barry Lyndon, Blue Velvet, Marnie, Mulholland Drive, The Night of the Hunter, Raging Bull, Sunset Boulevard, and The Tenant as his top ten.[20]

Future projects[edit]

Dominik joined David Fincher for season 2 of Netflix series Mindhunter, which debuted in late 2019.[21] Dominik directed two episodes.[21]

One of Dominik's proposed projects was Blonde, based on Joyce Carol Oates's fictional Marilyn Monroe memoir of the same name, which was scheduled to start shooting in January 2011 but the project was put on hold when he announced Killing Them Softly. In 2014 Jessica Chastain was in talks to play Monroe.[22] In late 2019, Cuban actress Ana de Armas was cast in the lead role.

Personal life[edit]

Dominik has one son. He was engaged to actress Bella Heathcote in 2017.[23]



Year Title
Director Writer Notes
2000 Chopper Yes Yes
2007 The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford Yes Yes
2012 Killing Them Softly Yes Yes
2016 One More Time with Feeling Yes No Documentary
2022 Blonde Yes Yes Post-production


Year Title
Director Writer Notes
2019 Mindhunter Yes No Directed 2 episodes

Music Videos[edit]

  • "Cat Inna Can" (1993) - Straightjacket Fits


Year Group Award Result Film
2000 AFI Awards Best Director Won Chopper
Best Adapted Screenplay Nominated
IF Awards Best Independent New Filmmaker Won
Stockholm International Film Festival Bronze Horse Nominated
2001 Buenos Aires International Festival of Independent Cinema Best Film Nominated
Cognac Festival du Film Policier Critics Award Won
Grand Prix Won
Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards Best Director Won
Best Adapted Screenplay Nominated
2007 Venice Film Festival Golden Lion Nominated The Assassination of Jesse James
by the Coward Robert Ford
2008 Film Critics Circle of Australia Awards Best Foreign Film - English Language Nominated
Western Writers of America Best Western Drama Won
2012 65th Cannes Film Festival Palme d'Or Nominated Killing Them Softly
Stockholm International Film Festival Bronze Horse Nominated
Best Screenplay Won


  1. ^ McGregor, Lisa (27 July 2000). "'Chopper' the film to be released next week". The World Today.
  2. ^ "Chopper". Rotten Tomatoes.
  3. ^ "Australian 'Chopper' ups Beyond". Variety. 21 November 2000. Retrieved 27 April 2019.
  4. ^ Andrew Dominik. "The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford". Your London Reviews (Interview). IndieLondon. Retrieved 1 May 2014.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ Salisbury, Mark (November 2007). "Andrew Dominik: interview". Time Out London.
  6. ^ Andrew Dominik. "Charlie Rose" (Interview). Interviewed by Charlie Rose. Archived from the original on 3 April 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  7. ^ Whitington, Paul (30 November 2007). "The Big Interview: Andrew Dominik, 'The Assassination of Jesse James'". Irish Independent.
  8. ^ Panasiewicz, Kevin (2 November 2010). "Andrew Dominik and Casey Affleck Possibly Reteaming for COGAN'S TRADE". Collider.
  9. ^ Mike Stringer (5 May 2011). "Brad Pitt's 'Cogan's Trade' is in the Can". A&E Playground. Retrieved 29 May 2011.
  10. ^ "2012 Official Selection". Cannes. 5 May 2012. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
  11. ^ Dave Calhoun. "Cannes Film Festival 2012 line-up announced". Timeout. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
  12. ^ Zaborsky, Artur. "Film o nieobecności. Nick Cave opowiada o traumie po śmierci nastoletniego syna" [A film about absence. Nick Cave tells of trauma after the death of his teenage son]. Weekend (in Polish). Retrieved 3 October 2016.
  13. ^ "Critic Reviews One More Time with Feeling". 30 September 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  14. ^ Dominik Hits 'demolished' At Paramount Archived 1 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  15. ^ "Last Man Standing". Filmmaker Magazine. September 2007. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  16. ^ Stax (18 December 2003). "The Stax Report: Script Review of The Killer Inside Me". IGN. Retrieved 6 June 2020.
  17. ^ Dawson, Nick (28 January 2008). "Last Man Standing". Filmmaker Magazine: Web Exclusives.
  18. ^ Andrew Dominik (2008). "Assassination of Jesse James: Andrew Dominik" (Interview). Interviewed by Emmanuel Levy. Archived from the original on 2 May 2014.
  19. ^ "Andrew Dominik Writing Tell No One Remake". Film Junk. 20 October 2010.
  20. ^ British Film Institute (2012). "Andrew Dominik Sight & Sound 2012". Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  21. ^ a b Sharf, Zack (19 April 2018). "'Mindhunter' Season 2: David Fincher Returning to Direct, Joined by Andrew Dominik and More — Report". IndieWire. Retrieved 8 May 2018.
  22. ^ "Jessica Chastain to Play Marilyn Monroe in Andrew Dominik's 'Blonde' (Exclusive)". TheWrap. 22 April 2014. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  23. ^ Andrew Dominik (30 December 2012). "Andrew Dominik, 'Killing Them Softly' director: "I'm Not Interested In Ordinary People"" (Interview). Retrieved 1 May 2014.

External links[edit]