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Saddened to hear of the sudden passing of director Steve DiMarco who I worked with over two seasons of Dark Matter.  A unique individual with a sense of style all his own, Steve was one of this industry’s quickest and most efficient shooters, never failing to make his days, often wrapping early (to the delight of the crew).  He was also a thoughtful and kind-hearted individual who would, over lunch and between set-ups, swing on by my office for a casual chat.

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I honestly didn’t know quite what to make of him on first meeting, this rebel punk in combat boots (and, if I remember correctly on that first day, a kilt), but we ended up forming an unlikely connection over a shared appreciation for The Prodigy, Ministry and, of course, good storytelling.

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Steve’s first episode of Dark Matter was Season 2, Episode 3 “I’ve Seen the Other Side of You” that kicks off with one of the show’s most suspenseful openings: FIVE on the run from some unknown pursuers who, in the Tease’s closing seconds, are revealed to be her fellow crew members.  I remember watching the director’s cut of the that scene – the CLOSE SHOTS, the QUICK CUTS, the unbearable escalating tension as she evades capture, seemingly escapes, only to be snagged at the very last moment.  It’s a terrific scene, one that puts Steve’s skills on full display – and simply blew me away in the editing suite.

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He came back to direct two episodes in the show’s third season, Episode 3 “Welcome to the Revolution”, and Episode 11 “The Dwarf Star Conspiracy”.  The latter included a shot he pitched during prep week that I was, admittedly, dubious could be pulled off – a shot of an expanding blood pool whose widening compass captures the reflection of  our main baddie (played by actress Kate Drummond).  I was skeptical it would work, but Steve proved me wrong.  Proved me wrong AND wrapped before lunch.

Sure, he was fast.  But he was also very good.

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We kept in touch via email after Dark Matter ended, meeting up for a sushi lunch back in January over which we discussed the state of the industry.  He was finding it increasingly difficult to land steady work despite his great body of work.  The pandemic only exacerbated the situation, but Steve remained upbeat in his messages, always checking in to see how I was doing.  The last time I heard from Steve was back in November when we exchanged emails and he told me about some writing he was doing.  It’s a shame he never got the opportunity to realize that work.

Steve DiMarco was one-of-a-kind.  And he will be missed.

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18 thoughts on “December 17, 2020: Remembering Steve DiMarco

  1. I’m very sorry to hear that, Joe. I remember you mentioning him on the blog a number of times during production and his talent obviously spoke for itself on the show. I’m sure he’ll be greatly missed.

  2. I remember Steve Dimarco! Who could forget him with his style. Sorry to hear of his passing. Chalk another good one up to a crappy year. Rest in peace Steve. Prayers to his family and friends.

  3. My thoughts and prayers are with Mr. DiMarco’s friends and family. He worked on many of my favorite shows over the years and is a great loss to the industry.

  4. Said so well Joe. We will miss this amazing human who wore his heart on his sleeve.

  5. We are losing way too many good people in 2020.
    My heart goes out to all his family friends and colleagues.

  6. I am sorry to learn of Steve’s passing, thanks for sharing what a very cool person he was on set. I’m always in awe of people who can rock their own style. Last night I was considering ordering another bland overpriced JCrew sweater, but seeing Steve’s cool style inspires me to say screw it to the normcore of it all. Sending hugs to Steve’s family and his colleagues.

  7. RIP Steve. I didn’t know him but would have loved to chat music with him (heard he was a Dead Boys/Stiv Bators fan) & I loved Ministry & 80’s punk. Sounded like a truly great guy & another untimely death ☹️. Very sad😞

  8. I’m so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your memories of him. He was so, so talented.

  9. I was the lead actor in what I believe were Steve’s first two directing efforts. The self-funded, “Transplant,” shot on film, and the straight to video, “Shock Chamber – A Trilogy of Terror.” Both were shot in the early 1980’s as our careers and learning curves about the craft were just beginning. His talents were evident early. Although we had little in common in our other interests, we found a friendship. I even remember meeting his pet Rat when I was working out with weights in his apt., in preparation for the first role. 🙂 He was a good-hearted man of enormous talent. My career took me to L.A. in 1985 and I only saw him once or twice after that….but, I never forgot him. R.I.P., old friend.

  10. I worked with Steve early in my career as a Costume Designer.
    He is so cool! The state of the industry… don’t get me going!
    Thank you for this sweet piece, on a good man & director!

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