On February 1, 1921 director William Desmond Taylor was found shot dead in his Hollywood bungalow. There seems to be a long list of possible subjects. Podcast Murder in Hollywoodland takes a look at old school Hollywood, the studio system, and the dirty little secrets of the silent screen era stars. There’s the seemingly unhinged starlet Mary Miles Minter, and her fiercely protective and competitive mother. There’s Mabel Normand, the party girl and best friend of Taylor. There’s also the former driver and assistant that not only stole from Taylor, but pawned the items under Taylor’s real name.
Hosts Tracy Pattin and James Remar guide listeners through this six-part series, focusing on the individual suspects and fascinating information about Hollywood. I for one didn’t realize that the Sunset Blvd character Norma Desmond’s name was inspired by Mabel Normand and William Desmond Taylor. Some of the podcast is dramatized for an engaging good time. Murder in Hollywoodland is worthy of a podcast binge.
This year is the 100-year anniversary of the murder, and the perfect time to take a listen to Murder in Hollywoodland. It is available on all major podcast platforms through Wondery.