Andrew Dominik

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Andrew Dominik
Dominik at the Australian premiere of Killing Them Softly, 2012
Born (1967-10-07) 7 October 1967 (age 56)
Wellington, New Zealand
Alma materSwinburne Film School
  • Film director
  • 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), the neo-noir crime film Killing Them Softly (2012), and the biographical psychological drama Blonde (2022). 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.


2000–2012: Early career and acclaim[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.[2] Chopper received generally positive reviews,[3] 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).[4]

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

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.[5] 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.[6] 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.[7] 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.[8] The film garnered two Academy Award nominations: Best Cinematography (Deakins) and Best Supporting Actor (Affleck).

Killing Them Softly (2012)

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.[9] The film was renamed Killing Them Softly. Shooting began in January 2011 and wrapped in May 2011.[10] The film competed for the Palme d'Or at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival.[11][12] and was released through the Weinstein Company.


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.[13] The film premiered at the 2016 Venice Film Festival. The critical aggregator website Metacritic awarded the film a score of 91, indicating "universal acclaim".[14] Dominik joined David Fincher for season 2 of Netflix series Mindhunter, which debuted in late 2019.[15] Dominik directed two episodes.[15]

Blonde (2022)

In 2022, Dominik completed 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.[16] In late 2019, Cuban actress Ana de Armas was cast in the lead role. Blonde had its world premiere at the 79th Venice Film Festival on 8 September 2022,[17] and was released in the United States on 16 September 2022, before its streaming release on 28 September 2022, by Netflix. It is rated NC-17 for its graphic sexual content and is the first NC-17 film released through a streaming service.[18][19]

Unrealised and upcoming 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.[20][21] 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.[22] Michael Winterbottom eventually directed the 2010 film.

In 2007, Cormac McCarthy's Cities of the Plain was in development with James Franco starring.[23][24] 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.[25]

In 2014, it was announced that Dominik would write a 3D remake of Shaolin Temple with Justin Lin set to direct.[26] In 2017, Netflix picked up War Party, a Navy SEAL adventure film written by Dominik and Harrison Query with Tom Hardy attached to star and Ridley Scott set to produce under Dominik's direction.[27]


In the 2012 Sight & Sound poll of the greatest films of all time, Dominik chose:[28]

Personal life[edit]

Dominik has one son. He was engaged to actress Bella Heathcote in 2017.[29]



Year Title Director Writer
2000 Chopper Yes Yes
2007 The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford Yes Yes
2012 Killing Them Softly Yes Yes
2022 Blonde Yes Yes

Documentary film


Year Title Episode
2019 Mindhunter "Episode 4" (S2 E4)
"Episode 5" (S2 E5)

Music video


Year Group Award Result Title
1994 ARIA Music Awards ARIA Award for Best Video Nominated "The Honeymoon Is Over"
by The Cruel Sea
1999 ARIA Awards for Best Music Video Nominated "You'll Do" by The Cruel Sea
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
2022 79th Venice International Film Festival Golden Lion Nominated Blonde
2023 43rd Golden Raspberry Awards Worst Director Nominated
Worst Screen Combo
(shared with his issues with women)
Worst Screenplay Won


  1. ^ Dalton, Ben (5 December 2022). "Andrew Dominik on 'Blonde' reaction: "I'm really pleased that it outraged so many people"". Screen International. Retrieved 14 January 2024. I'm Australian, from Melbourne – I came of age in the 80s when to offend your audience was a solemn duty.
  2. ^ McGregor, Lisa (27 July 2000). "'Chopper' the film to be released next week". The World Today.
  3. ^ "Chopper". Rotten Tomatoes.
  4. ^ "Australian 'Chopper' ups Beyond". Variety. 21 November 2000. Retrieved 27 April 2019.
  5. ^ Andrew Dominik. "The Assassination of Jesse James By The Coward Robert Ford". Your London Reviews (Interview). IndieLondon. Retrieved 1 May 2014.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Salisbury, Mark (November 2007). "Andrew Dominik: interview". Time Out London.
  7. ^ Andrew Dominik. "Charlie Rose" (Interview). Interviewed by Charlie Rose. Archived from the original on 3 April 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  8. ^ Whitington, Paul (30 November 2007). "The Big Interview: Andrew Dominik, 'The Assassination of Jesse James'". Irish Independent.
  9. ^ Panasiewicz, Kevin (2 November 2010). "Andrew Dominik and Casey Affleck Possibly Reteaming for COGAN'S TRADE". Collider.
  10. ^ Mike Stringer (5 May 2011). "Brad Pitt's 'Cogan's Trade' is in the Can". A&E Playground. Retrieved 29 May 2011.
  11. ^ "2012 Official Selection". Cannes. 5 May 2012. Retrieved 19 May 2012.
  12. ^ Dave Calhoun. "Cannes Film Festival 2012 line-up announced". Timeout. Archived from the original on 20 December 2012. Retrieved 19 April 2012.
  13. ^ 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.
  14. ^ "Critic Reviews One More Time with Feeling". 30 September 2016. Retrieved 24 November 2016.
  15. ^ 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.
  16. ^ "Jessica Chastain to Play Marilyn Monroe in Andrew Dominik's 'Blonde' (Exclusive)". TheWrap. 22 April 2014. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  17. ^ "Biennale Cinema 2022 | Blonde". La Biennale di Venezia. 25 July 2022. Retrieved 30 August 2022.
  18. ^ "What to Expect From Netflix's 'Blonde'". Vogue. 28 October 2021. Retrieved 21 August 2022.
  19. ^ Sharf, Zack (16 June 2022). "'Blonde' Trailer: Ana de Armas Stuns as Marilyn Monroe in Netflix's NC-17 Drama". Variety. Retrieved 28 July 2022.
  20. ^ Dominik Hits 'demolished' At Paramount Archived 1 December 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^ "Last Man Standing". Filmmaker Magazine. September 2007. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  22. ^ Stax (18 December 2003). "The Stax Report: Script Review of The Killer Inside Me". IGN. Retrieved 6 June 2020.
  23. ^ Dawson, Nick (28 January 2008). "Last Man Standing". Filmmaker Magazine: Web Exclusives.
  24. ^ Andrew Dominik (2008). "Assassination of Jesse James: Andrew Dominik" (Interview). Interviewed by Emmanuel Levy. Archived from the original on 2 May 2014.
  25. ^ "Andrew Dominik Writing Tell No One Remake". Film Junk. 20 October 2010.
  26. ^ "Andrew Dominik To Script 'Shaolin Temple' For Helmer Justin Lin". 22 August 2014. Retrieved 14 October 2022.
  27. ^ "Tom Hardy, Ridley Scott Team for Navy SEAL Movie 'War Party'". The Hollywood Reporter. 16 March 2017. Retrieved 14 October 2022.
  28. ^ British Film Institute (2012). "Andrew Dominik Sight & Sound 2012". Archived from the original on 25 August 2012. Retrieved 1 May 2014.
  29. ^ 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]