Although the upcoming film The Black Dahlia is being touted as based on the novel by James Ellroy, the writer of LA Confidential, Ellroy actually based his book on the 1947 Los Angeles murder of aspiring actress Elizabeth Short. The book supplies fictional closure to a murder that remains unsolved to this day. The case was a headline generator for months after the discovery of the aspiring actress’ mutilated corpse on January 15, 1947. The Los Angeles police investigated numerous suspects from doctors to various employees and owners of some of the nightclubs Short was known to have frequented. Even Folksinger Woody Guthrie was briefly investigated by the LAPD.
But in anticipation of renewed interest in the case thanks to Brian DePalma’s movie, which opens on September 15, the Los Angeles Times set up a special website with over 80 articles relating to the murder ranging from 1947 all the way to 1983.
You can read it all here.