"L'Affaire Dominici" is based
on a true story. On the night of the 4-5th August 1953 an
English couple and their daughter were murdered in their
tents. The suspects are the Dominici family, whose farm
lies near the tragedy,and whose patriarch (Jean Gabin) shows
The Dominici family seems to come from
an unfamiliar world, traditional rural France. They contradict
themselves but we are not clear why, they might be trying
to cover up, but then again there might be other reasons.
Gabin gives a disturbing performance and
Victor Lanoux is equally good as his son. A young Gerard
Depardieu has a small part as as a dim nephew.
A 2003 telefilm version of L'Affaire Dominici
by Pierre Boutron, was made with Michel Serrault et Michel
Blanc. It was inspired by a book by William Reymond supporting
the thesis that the Secret Service was implicated in the
Orson Welles made an unfinnished television
documentary, the content of which was completed in French
by Christophe Cogne with the title L'Affaire Dominici
par Orson Welles.
A 2010 play called Dominici, un procès
impitoyable, by Marc Fayet, was staged by Robert Hossein.
There are also a number of French books
on the subject.
Jacques Arrigoni, Affaire Dominici : Enquête sur
l'histoire, Éditions Toustemslibre, 2008, (ISBN
André Benedetto, Pourquoi et comment on a fait
un assassin de Gaston d., Éditions Pierre Jean
Jean-Charles Deniau et Madeleine Sultan, Dominici :
c'était une affaire de famille, Ed. de l'Archipel.
Jean Giono, Notes sur l'affaire Dominici, Gallimard,
1955, (ISBN 978-2070228294)
L'écrivain a couvert le procès pour l'hebdomadaire
Arts. Ses notes paraissent dans cette revue fin 1954.
Elles sont complétées un an plus tard par
un Essai sur le caractère des personnages où
il fait une analyse psychologique des différents
protagonistes de l'affaire.
Éric Guerrier, L'Affaire Dominici, expertise du
triple crime de Lurs, Éditions Cheminements, 2007.
Edmond Sebeille, L'Affaire Dominici, toute la vérité
sur le crime de Lurs, Plon, 1970.
Pierre Carrias, Jean Teyssier, René Pacault et
Yves Thélène, "Dominici, de l'accident
aux agents secrets", éditions de Provence,
The Real Jack Drummond
Sir Jack Cecil Drummond FRIC, FRS (12 Jan
18914 Aug or 5 Aug 1952) was a distinguished biochemist,
noted for his work on nutrition as applied to the British
diet under rationing during the Second World War.
On the evening of 4 August 1952, while
on holiday in France in their green Hillman estate car,
registered number NNK 686, the Drummonds stopped by the
side of the N96 main road, less than 200 metres from a picturesque
farmhouse called La Grand'Terre. The site is marked by a
milestone as exactly 6 km south of Peyruis and 6 km north
of La Brillanne. A footpath leads from the site down to
the banks of the river Durance.
La Grand'Terre was the home of the Dominicis,
a family of Franco-Italian peasant farmers: the patriarch
Gaston, his wife Marie, their son Gustave, Gustave's wife
Yvette and their baby son Alain. It was Gustave who claimed
to have found the three dead bodies around 5:30am on the
morning of 5 August, and who flagged down a passing motorcyclist,
Jean-Marie Olivier, telling him to fetch the police.
Anne's body was found near the car. Jack's
lay on the other side of the N96, covered by a camp bed.
They had both been shot by a Rock-Ola rifle. The body of
10-year-old Elizabeth was found 77 metres away, down the
path leading to the river, on the other side of the bridge
over the railway. Her head had been brutally smashed in
by the stock of the rifle. The barrel of the murder weapon
was soon found in the river, with the stock a short distance
downstream. It is possible that the force of the blow or
blows used to kill Elizabeth had also broken the stock off
Gaston Dominici was convicted of the murders
in November 1954, and sentenced to the guillotine.Both the
police investigation and the conduct of the trial had been
widely criticised, and after two inconclusive inquiries,
President René Coty commuted the sentence to life
imprisonment. Coty was succeeded in 1959 by President Charles
de Gaulle, who ordered Dominici's release on humanitarian
grounds, but did not pardon him, nor grant his request for
The Drummonds are buried in the cemetery
of the well-known tourist town of Forcalquier, about 25
km east of Lurs. Near the stone bridge over the railway,
a cross with children's votive offerings marks the spot
where Elizabeth's body was found.
The murders remain a subject of hot dispute
to this day in France, where they are referred to as l'affaire
Dominici (French). Alain Dominici, a baby at the time of
the murders, has spent a lifetime campaigning for the innocence
of his grandfather.
Crime Drama Mystery
Claude Bernard-Aubert screenplay
Claude Bernard-Aubert story
Daniel Boulanger screenplay
Daniel Boulanger story
Max Amyl and
Périez, le juge d'instruction
Le premier journaliste
Sir Jack Drummond
Alberto Farnese ...
Un journaliste italien
Le père d'Yvette
Le président de la cour d'Assises
Lady Ann Drummond
Le second journaliste
Le médecin légiste
L'adjoint du commissaire
de la correctionnelle
L'affaire Dominici on You
Still from the Film L'affaire Dominici
Still from the Film L'affaire Dominici
Dominici, Poster for the Play
The Murder Victims
Photograph of the Accusedi
Newspaper Headlines: Death Sentence
Photograph of the Accused
The titles (in the US) of the best French films, sorted by title