In its November issue, Vanity Fair, where Dominick Dunne contributed countless articles since the mid-1980’s, has a detailed tribute to the tireless journalist and chronicler of Hollywood life and high profile court cases, written by executive online editor Michael Hogan, who first met Dunne while working as the assistant to editor Wayne Lawson.
“What makes his accomplishments all the more astonishing is how low he was just three decades ago. Before he became one of the most instantly recognizable magazine writers in the world, Dominick Dunne’s only claim to fame was his epic, humiliating failure.”
The must-read article highlights Dunne’s work throughout his life, particularly his propensity to identify with the victims of horrible crimes as he covered the trials of Claus von Bulow, the Menendez brothers and O.J. Simpson — an affect arising out of his experience with the murder of his own daughter Dominique, whose killer John Sweeney was convicted of a lesser charge of manslaughter:
“Dominick’s article about John Sweeney’s case was published in the March 1984 issue of Vanity Fair under the title ‘Justice.’ Even today, you can feel the rage pulsating behind his carefully chosen words.”
Hogan also talks of Dunne’s various feuds with family and friends over the years, from his own brother John to the Kennedy family, who seemed to haunt Dunne even to the day of his death last month.
“Dominick died on August 26, but fate had prepared one last humbling joke for him. The night before, Ted Kennedy had beaten him to the punch. The man who, in Dominick’s estimation, had ‘lived recklessly, performed brilliantly in Congress, and often failed miserably in life’ was all anybody could talk about.
Even in death, Dominick was being tormented by the family he resented most. It was the kind of story that would have amused the hell out of him–if only it had happened to someone else.”
Read more: Our Man Dominick —Vanity Fair