Between the 1920s and '40s, New York City's Cotton Club became renowned as a Harlem speakeasy that featured prominent Black entertainers for years. But in the '80s, the legendary club became synonymous with a much different tune after Roy Radin was found fatally shot before production on his film about the Cotton Club could even begin. The case, which became known as the "Cotton Club" murder, turned Hollywood on its head and now, it is coming to life in Audible's upcoming star-studded scripted audio series Killing Hollywood: The Cotton Club Murder, set to debut on May 27 — and PopCulture has your first exclusive listen!
The series features an acclaimed cast, including Academy Award- and Emmy-nominated actress Juliette Lewis, Emmy-nominated actor Rainn Wilson, and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Christian Slater. Wilson stars as Roy Radin, the "washed-up theater producer" who was trying to break into the film industry with a movie about the legendary New York nightclub and whose bullet-ridden body led to a headline-making case and trial. Slater portrays Robert Evans, the film producer known for his work on The Godfather and Chinatown, who entered into a financial agreement with Radin to produce the film. Lewis voices Karen DeLayne "Lanie" Jacobs, who, along with three others, was convicted of second-degree murder and kidnapping in the early '90s.
Based on the shocking true story and written by Daniel Thomsen and Jeffery Baker, the eight-part series tells the story of Jacobs, a "cocaine queen-pin" who meets Radin when she ditches Miami for Los Angeles.
"Together, they team up for a shot at greatness: A stake in The Cotton Club, a star-studded film produced by Robert Evans, the (in)famous Hollywood legend behind The Godfather and Chinatown. But as egos, ambitions, and suspicions collide, it isn't long before the deal turns deadly," the official synopsis, per Audible, reads. "If you let me go, I’ll play dead. No one will ever know. I’ll throw a duffle bag with a million bucks in your backyard. God's honest truth," a clip for the series, which you can listen to below, teases the shocking real-life story.
Killing Hollywood: The Cotton Club Murder is from Audible Originals, Treefort Media, and The Komak Company. The eight-part series debuts on Thursday, May 27, on Audible. You can listen to the true-crime series when it debuts by clicking here.