Boston Strangler Stars Keira Knightley and Carrie Coon Reveal Why They ‘Can’t Watch’ True Crime Anymore
During a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly, stars Keira Knightley and Carrie Coon spoke about their new Hulu movie Boston Strangler. Still, despite starring in a true crime thriller, Knightley and Coon both admitted that they “can’t watch” true crime anymore.
Knightley said, “Since having children, completely can’t watch it. Totally terrified.” Her costar similarly stated that being a mother was the reason she no longer watched true crime. Coon said, “I have to say, having children has complicated my relationship to it. But I listened to [the podcast] My Favorite Murder for a long time, [read] In Cold Blood by Truman Capote — I did love a good true crime.”
In Hulu’s new true crime thriller Boston Strangler, Knightley plays Loretta McLaughlin, a reporter who works for the Record-American newspaper. McLaughlin is the first person to break the story of the Boston Strangler. Coon plays McLaughlin’s colleague Jean Cole.
Keira Knightley Called Her Role in Boston Strangler an ‘Opportunity to Highlight Two Amazing Female Investigative Journalists’
When speaking about why she chose to take on the role of McLaughlin, Knightley said, “For me, it was the opportunity to highlight two amazing female investigative journalists. This is a really famous story, and these two women have been largely erased from the history of this case — even people in Boston largely don’t know who they were and don’t know the part that they played in exposing this case and even the naming of the Boston Strangler.”
She continued, “Their part in this whole investigation has been totally taken out, but their tenacity, their doggedness in trying to get justice for the women, is very inspiring. It also shows how important it is to have women in places of power because this was a story that had been largely ignored by the male establishment. It took two women to recognize what was going on and to highlight its importance.”
Coon also applauded Matt Ruskin’s (who wrote and directed the film) vision for the true crime thriller and noted her appreciation for not exaggerating violent aspects in the movie. Coon stated, “I really respect Matt for avoiding that angle — he really went out of his way to make sure that the crimes happen offscreen. He wasn’t in the game of delivering gratuitous violence to his audience; he really wanted them to see that the focus of the story was about the way these women were warning the women of Boston when nobody else was.”
She added, “We didn’t even have the term serial killer for 10 more years, and Loretta was doing psychological profiling at a time when it was a very unusual and progressive approach to a case. It’s just really gratifying for their families to see that their story and their involvement in this case is finally being told.”
Knightley stated, “It’s an incredible privilege to highlight the legacy of these two extraordinary women. It’s really important to see women struggle and see women not necessarily always succeed and yet still try. It’s the resilience that I found unbelievably inspiring. You can’t get everything right, but you can try your best to move forward in this world. That’s what they did.”
Coon finished by saying, “They were supporting each other in an environment where, under some circumstances, a newsroom might say, ‘We already have a woman; we don’t need another one.’ Here were two women working closely on a case and continuing to support each other throughout their careers. So often in storytelling, women are pitted against each other. So often in our careers, we’re pitted against each other. The more we can lean into that allyship, the more rapidly things will change. We’ve got a long way to go, so it’s a good start.”
Boston Strangler is available now on Hulu.