Birthplace: St. Louis, Missouri
Nick Johnson (birthname: Nicholas D. Johnson) is an editor-turned-director who is part of the “Screenlife movement” of telling movie stories via personal electronic devices such as phones and laptops. Johnson is part of a tight-knit group of USC film alumni, including co-director and co-editor Will Merrick, producers Natalie Qasabian, Aneesh Chaganty, Sev Ohanian, Adam Sidman, Jo Henriquez, and Congyu E., as well as digital film veteran Timur Bekmambetov.
After working as an editor on various film, digital, music video, and TV projects, Johnson was a lead editor on the Chaganty-directed thriller, Searching (2018), starring John Cho and Debra Messing, which launched the Screenlife trend and earned a remarkable $75.6 million global return on a tiny $880,000 budget.
Nick Johnson served as editor on writer-director Tarek Tohme’s music-based drama, Hold On (2019), and then was an editor on the Hulu-aired thriller, Run (2020), starring Sarah Paulson and directed and co-written (with Ohanian) by Chaganty. Johnson’s debut as writer-director (with Merrick) was the Screenlife-style thriller, Missing (2023), following the template established by Searching, and co-starring Storm Reid and Nia Long, earning over $26 million by mid-February after a mid-January release.
Nick Johnson was born and raised in St. Louis, Mo. suburb of Kirkwood, and graduated from Kirkwood High School, where he began his studies in drama and film. Johnson attended the University of Southern California from 2009-2012 when he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree from the School of Cinematic Arts.
Home Work: Nick Johnson finished post-production touches on his debut feature, Missing, from his parent’s home in suburban St. Louis.