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John Nicholas Cassavetes (; December 9, 1929 – February 3, 1989) was an American actor, film director, and screenwriter. Cassavetes was a pioneer of American independent film, writing and directing over a dozen movies, which he partially self-financed. He also acted in many Hollywood films, notably Rosemary's Baby (1968) and The Dirty Dozen (1967). He studied acting with Don Richardson, utilizing an alternative technique to method acting which privileged character over traditional narrative. His income from acting made it possible for him to direct his own films independently. Cassavetes was nominated for three separate Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actor for The Dirty Dozen (1967), Best Original Screenplay for Faces (1968) and Best Director for A Woman Under the Influence (1974) alongside Gena's Best Actress nomination. He collaborated frequently with various actors, including his wife Gena Rowlands, Peter Falk, Ben Gazzara, and Seymour Cassel. His children Nick Cassavetes, Zoe Cassavetes, and Xan Cassavetes are also filmmakers.

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