Hulu’s Boston Strangler Trailer Shows Keira Knightley And Carrie Coon As Investigative Journalists Who Broke '60s Murder Case

Over the years, journalism movies like All the President’s Men, Spotlight, and Zodiac have taken audiences out of their seats and into the hectic world of a newsroom at deadline, allowing them to see how the day’s biggest stories turn into some of history’s biggest moments. And with his latest directorial effort, Boston Strangler, writer/director Matt Ruskin makes a worthy addition to the list of best journalism movies, with his riveting true crime story about the duo of female reporters, played by Keira Knightley and The Gilded Age’s Carrie Coon, who helped break the ‘60s murder case. Watch the trailer above for a brief sampling of what’s to come in the new Hulu movie.

Based on the work of Record American investigative reporters Loretta McLaughlin (Knightley) and Jean Cole (Coon), the upcoming release from 20th Century Studios follows the pair of newshounds as they do what their superiors at the Boston-based paper, as well as police and politicians, refuse to do: ask the difficult questions about a string of murders all committed in the same way with very similar victims.

The story of the killings have been at the center of multiple movies in the past, including 1968’s Boston Strangler starring Tony Curtis as Albert DeSalvo, the man connected to at least one of the 13 murders committed by the serial killer, and Henry Fonda as John S. Bottomly, the Boston detective investigating the case. But with his version, Matt Ruskin, a Boston native, took a very different approach to the story and the manner in which it was told.

During an interview with CinemaBlend tied to the Boston Strangler trailer debut, Ruskin elaborated on what led to him making the 2023 movie

I grew up in Boston and had always heard about the Boston Strangler, but it wasn’t until a few years ago when I started reading about the case that I realized thatI knew very little about what actually happened. When I started researching this project, I discovered an incredibly layered murder mystery with all these gripping twists and turns. And I thought that would be a really interesting basis for this film. I had seen the 1968 film and much of that story was just not told.

Soon after determining he wanted to take a different approach with Boston Strangler, the Crown Heights director found the perfect character: Loretta McLaughlin, the reporter who not only helped break the story, but also gave the Boston Strangler his name. Through research, not only did Ruskin learn more about McLaughlin, he also discovered that he knew the granddaughter of her fellow reporter, Jean Cole.  

I looked up everything I could about Loretta and this woman Jean Cole she was paired with. And I discovered that Jean’s granddaughter was an old friend of mine, and so I called her up and she introduced me to both of their families. Once I made a personal connection to them, they welcomed me with open arms and gave me access to everything from old journals and photographs to old newspaper clippings. The more I learned about them, the more I grew to admire them as people and as reporters. At that point it really felt like a story worth telling.

Boston Strangler, which also stars Academy Award winner Chris Cooper, Alessandro Nivola, David Dastmalchian, Bill Camp, and Morgan Spector, is set to premiere Friday, March 17, 2023, exclusively on Hulu. If you haven’t already, now would be a good time to sign up for a Hulu subscription so you don’t miss out on this engaging true crime story and others like it.

Philip Sledge
Content Writer

Philip grew up in Louisiana (not New Orleans) before moving to St. Louis after graduating from Louisiana State University-Shreveport. When he's not writing about movies or television, Philip can be found being chased by his three kids, telling his dogs to stop barking at the mailman, or chatting about professional wrestling to his wife. Writing gigs with school newspapers, multiple daily newspapers, and other varied job experiences led him to this point where he actually gets to write about movies, shows, wrestling, and documentaries (which is a huge win in his eyes). If the stars properly align, he will talk about For Love Of The Game being the best baseball movie of all time.