Who Killed 'The Black Dahlia?' New Series Examines Hollywood Murder Mystery
It’s Hollywood’s most notorious murder mystery.
On the morning of January, 15, 1947, the mutilated body of aspiring actress Elizabeth Short was discovered on the sidewalk of a Los Angeles parking lot. The 22-year-old’s body was found cut in half. She had been bathed and drained of blood.
As details of her gruesome murder began to emerge, the press dubbed her “The Black Dahlia” for her rumored affinity for sheer black clothes and in reference to the 1946 movie The Blue Dahlia.
But the case has never been solved.
A new six-episode limited TV series on TNT is based on true events surrounding the slaying and a longtime suspect in the case: Gynecologist George Hodel, who was never charged in the case but whose son, a retired LAPD homicide detective, wrote a book pointing to him as the main suspect. Hodel was known to have dated Short.
The TNT series, titled “I Am the Night,” premieres Jan. 28 at 9 p.m. ET. An exclusive clip explaining the mystique of the case is shown above.
The series centers on Fauna Hodel, played by India Eisley. Fauna was adopted as a young girl, and the series follows the teenager’s quest for answers about her identity — leading to her discovery about her possible connection to the infamous mystery.
“On the journey to find who she really was, she stumbled into one of the most famous true crime stories in history,” says Director and Executive Producer Patty Jenkins.
“The 16-year-old girl is the noir detective of our story,” Jenkins adds.
Last February, George Hodel’s Los Feliz mansion sold for nearly $5 million. The mansion, which evokes a Mayan temple with a pyramid-like façade and is featured prominently in the series, was designed by Lloyd Wright, the son of Frank Lloyd Wright. Many researchers believe Short was murdered in the home.
But answers remain elusive. The FBI’s website, on a page dedicated to the crime, states, “The murderer has never been found, and given how much time has passed, probably never will be. The legend grows.”
“I Am the Night,” a six-part series, premieres Jan. 28 on TNT at 9 p.m. ET.