John Dahl

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
John Dahl
Dahl at a screening for You Kill Me in San Francisco, California, June 14, 2007
Born1956 (age 62–63)
Billings, Montana, United States
Alma materMontana State University-Bozeman
AFI Conservatory
OccupationFilm director, television director, screenwriter
Years active1989–present

John Dahl (born 1956) is an American film and television director and writer, best known for his work in the neo-noir genre.[1]

Life and career[edit]

John Dahl was born in Billings, Montana, the second of four children (his brother is filmmaker Rick Dahl).[2] Dahl spent his young life in and around Montana all the way up through his college years. His interest in film began at the age of seventeen, when he first saw A Clockwork Orange, as told to Robert K. Elder in an interview for The Film That Changed My Life.

This film captured my imagination so much. It was the first film that I saw that made me realize that somebody has to make this stuff. Somebody has to build those sets. Somebody has to paint those paintings. All of a sudden it became accessible. The movie was so compelling and interesting to me on so many levels. The one thing that struck me was that somebody made a movie, and that it was something that maybe, possibly, I could do.[3]

— John Dahl

He first attended the Montana State University, and then transferred to Montana State University's School of Film and Photography, where he received a degree in film. While at MSU, Dahl was a student of Bill Pullman. His first feature film at MSU was titled The Death Mutants made for $12,000. While at Montana State he played guitar in the punk rock band "The Pugs". He also met his wife, Beth Friedberg at MSU, and after graduation they both left Montana to attend the AFI Conservatory in Los Angeles. He entered the directors program and she entered the cinematography program.

Dahl started his career as a storyboard artist and assistant director. He continued through the eighties making short films and directing music videos for Kool & the Gang and Joe Satriani. Dahl's first two films were Kill Me Again and Red Rock West.[4] His third feature film was the crime thriller, The Last Seduction starring Linda Fiorentino.[4] Fiorentino's performance in the film, although critically acclaimed, was not eligible to receive an Oscar nomination because it aired on cable television before its theatrical release. The Last Seduction also starred Dahl's former college professor, Bill Pullman.[4]





  • Fallen Angels (1993): episode "Tomorrow I Die"
  • Tilt (2005): episode "Shuffle Up and Deal"
  • Californication (2007–13): episodes "The Devil's Threesome", "No Way to Treat a Lady", "So Here's the Thing ...", "Mr. Bad Example", "Lawyers, Guns and Money", "The Last Supper", "JFK to LAX" and "Quitters"
  • Life (2007): episode "Powerless"
  • Fear Itself (2008): episode "Chance"
  • True Blood (2008): episodes "Mine", "Never Let Me Go", "Timebomb" and "Hitting the Ground"
  • Battlestar Galactica (2009): episode "The Oath"
  • Dexter (2008–13): episodes "The Lion Sleeps Tonight", "Go Your Own Way", "Dex Takes a Holiday", "Hungry Man", "Hello Bandit", "Circle Us", "Hop a Freighter", "Those Kinds of Things", "A Horse of a Different Color", "Just Let Go", "This Is the Way the World Ends", "Are You ... ?", "Run", "Do You See What I See?", "A Little Reflection" and "Make Your Own Kind of Music"
  • Breaking Bad (2009): episode "Down"
  • The Vampire Diaries (2009–13): episodes "Friday Night Bites" and "Brave New World"
  • Hellcats (2010): episode "The Match Game"
  • Justified (2010–13): episodes "The Hammer", "For Blood or Money", "Measures" and "Outlaw"
  • Terriers (2010): episode "Agua Caliente"
  • Shameless (2011): episode "Killer Carl"
  • Homeland (2012): episode "The Clearing"
  • Arrow (2012): episode "Year's End"
  • Person of Interest (2013): episode "Dead Reckoning"
  • Hannibal (2013): episode "Buffet Froid"
  • The Americans (2013): episode "The Oath"
  • Ray Donovan (2013–18): episodes "Black Cadillac", "Viagra", "Sunny", "Swing Vote", "Marisol", "Chinese Algebra", "Las Vegas", "Dogwalker" and "Baby"
  • Outlander (2014)
  • House of Cards (2015): episodes "Chapter 33" and "Chapter 34"
  • Jessica Jones (2015): episode "AKA Sin Bin"
  • The Affair (2015–17): episodes "204", "302", "304", "308" and "309"
  • Billions (2016–18): episodes "Boasts and Rails", "Hell of a Ride" and "The Third Ortolan"
  • Kingdom (2016): episodes "Woke Up Lonely" and "Do Not Disturb"
  • Iron Fist (2017): episodes "Snow Gives Way" and "Shadow Hawk Takes Flight"
  • The Good Doctor (2017): episode "Oliver"
  • SEAL Team (2017–18): episodes "The Exchange" and "In Name Only"
  • The Looming Tower (2018): episodes "Losing My Religion" and "Mistakes We're Made"
  • Yellowstone (2019): episodes "Touching Your Enemy" and "Blood the Boy"
  • The Walking Dead (2019): episode "The World Before"
  • Evil (2019): episode "7 Swans a Singin"


Art department[edit]


  1. ^ "John Dahl". New York Times (online). Retrieved August 6, 2011.
  2. ^ "John Dahl Biography (1956-)". Retrieved September 3, 2011.
  3. ^ Dahl, John. Interview by Robert K. Elder. The Film That Changed My Life. By Robert K. Elder. Chicago: Chicago Review Press, 2011. N. p68. Print.
  4. ^ a b c Maslin, Janet (October 26, 1994). "THE LAST SEDUCTION; A Femme Fatale Who Lives Up To the Description". The New York Times. Retrieved March 8, 2012.

External links[edit]