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Famous celebrities who host true crime podcasts

Kim Kardashian
Image: DFree /

It’s not just journalists and amateur sleuths who host true crime podcasts. Quite a few celebrities, from the world’s biggest reality TV queen to the star of Mad Men, have got in on the action as well. Here are the famous folks whose podcasts you need to know about.

Kim Kardashian

Kim Kardashian may not seem like the most obvious fit for a hard-hitting exposé of the criminal justice system, but that’s exactly what her podcast is. Delving into a triple homicide dating back to 1994, The System: The Case of Kevin Keith questions the conviction of the eponymous Ohio man who’s been in jail for almost three decades. This is despite a lack of physical evidence connecting him to the three victims and serious question marks around the handling of the investigation.

The podcast takes a forensic look at every aspect of the case, with Kim Kardashian and her team examining everything from Kevin Keith’s alibi to alternative suspects and the whole American legal infrastructure. It’s unflinching, eye-opening and may just make you see the reality star in a whole new light.

Emilia Fox

The star of long-running crime drama Silent Witness, not to mention our very own series Murdertown, Emilia Fox is also one of the hosts of the podcast If It Bleeds, It Leads. Alongside criminology professor David Wilson (whose face will be familiar to fans of true crime documentaries), she explores the unique psychologies of those who transgress the law.

For example, one episode explores how and why some people can become hitmen, nonchalantly committing murders for money. Another asks why men are overwhelmingly more likely to commit violent crimes. Featuring interviews with convicts, including a murderer, the series sheds a fascinating light on the nooks and crannies of criminal minds.

Ronan Farrow

Although Ronan Farrow is a journalist, he also qualifies as a celebrity by being the son of Hollywood actress Mia Farrow and the controversial filmmaker Woody Allen. In 2017, Ronan also produced Pulitzer Prize-winning work to expose the sexual abuse carried out by movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.

The Catch and Kill Podcast provides an up close look at the investigation, revealing some of the twists and turns (such as the decision by one US TV network to kill the Weinstein story back in 2017). The podcast also looks at the involvement of Ambra Gutierrez, the model who bravely participated in a sting operation to catch Weinstein red-handed, as well as the lesser-known whistleblowers who tried to unmask one of the most powerful figures in Hollywood.

Amanda Knox

Amanda Knox is uniquely placed to host a true crime podcast. After all, she made global headlines after being convicted and then acquitted of the murder of student Meredith Kercher back in 2007. She’s since become a veteran podcaster, with her series The Truth About True Crime taking very deep dives into some highly eclectic cases.

One of these is the story of Robert Chambers, a preppy young man who was accused of killing his girlfriend, Jennifer Levin, in New York’s Central Park. This incendiary case of the late 1980s still provides a prism through which we can examine persistent issues like privilege and victim-blaming. It’s also particularly pertinent to this podcast since, like Amanda Knox herself, Jennifer Levin was demonised in the media as a promiscuous woman who ‘courted death’.

Zooey Deschanel and Jon Hamm

She may have faded from view today, but Joan Bennett was once Hollywood royalty, making her name in silent movies before delivering seductive performances as a femme fatale in a series of classic film noirs. However, her career was derailed when her movie producer husband Walter Wanger shot the man he thought she was having an affair with.

This shocking chapter from Hollywood’s golden age forms the basis of Love is a Crime, a podcast that tells the whole saga of Joan, Walter and the man who felt Walter’s wrath. What makes this particularly engrossing is the fact that it’s co-hosted by Joan and Walter’s granddaughter, Vanessa Hope. What’s more, Joan and Walter are portrayed by Zooey Deschanel and Jon Hamm, in dramatic reconstructions that bring this long-lost period to life.

Jon Hamm

Jon Hamm’s been busy in the world of true crime podcasts. Not only has the Mad Men star lent his voice to the story of Walter Wanger, but he’s also the star of American Hostage, a riveting re-enactment of a truly bizarre kidnapping that took place in 1977.

The perpetrator was one Tony Kiritsis, who entered the office of Indianapolis mortgage broker Dick Hall and wired the muzzle of his shotgun to Hall’s head. With the weapon rigged to go off if anyone shot Kiritsis, he took Hall hostage for 63 hours and made repeated calls to a radio station to angrily air his grievances against Hall.

The whole incredible situation made Kiritsis something of a folk hero, with many members of the public seeing him as a hard-working ‘Everyman’ fighting back against an unsympathetic banking system. This podcast tells the whole story, with Jon Hamm playing Fred Heckman, the radio journalist who interviewed Kiritsis during those nail-biting hours. As well as dramatising the saga, the series also features analysis by a former FBI profiler who deconstructs the motivations that led Kiritsis to such an outlandish showdown with society itself.

Check out our true crime podcast hub for podcast features and interviews, plus full episodes of the Murdertown podcast.