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Thomas Smith
Thomas Smith

Crime Story


Crime Story is an American crime drama television series, created by Chuck Adamson and Gustave Reininger and produced by Michael Mann, that aired on NBC, where it ran for two seasons from September 18, 1986, to May 10, 1988.




Crime Story



The show attracted both acclaim and controversy for its serialized format, in which a continuing storyline was told over an entire season, rather than being episodic, as was the case with most shows at the time (including Miami Vice).


At the center of Torello's crosshairs is rising young mobster Ray Luca (Anthony Denison). Initially Luca is an independent thief and killer whose crew, which includes Pauli Taglia (John Santucci) and Frank Holman (Ted Levine), specializes in robberies, burglaries and home invasions. Through his connection to Chicago crime boss Phil Bartoli (Jon Polito), Luca catches the attention of national crime figure Manny Weisbord (Joseph Wiseman), a character inspired by the legendary gangster Meyer Lansky. Luca impresses Weisbord with his desire to leave the streets and move up in the management ranks of organized crime. He assigns one of his men, Max Goldman (Andrew Clay), to be a middleman between himself and Luca.


Luca tells Weisbord and Bartoli of his plan to take over the Las Vegas bookmaking operation of Noah Ganz (Raymond Serra). He is told to negotiate a deal, but instead instigates the theft of Ganz's gambling book. However, this backfires when Torello gets wind of it and catches Frank Holman in the act, which results in the book falling into the hands of MCU. When a crime war threatens to break out with Ganz's organization, Weisbord and Bartoli order Luca to clean up his mess. In typical fashion Luca solves the problem by massacring Ganz and his thugs.


Torello finally manages to get a solid murder indictment against Luca. Meanwhile, Holman, who escaped custody only to be hunted down again, has made a deal with U.S. federal prosecutor Harry Breitel (Ray Sharkey) to provide information about the mob in exchange for immunity. Among his lies is a made-up story that he paid off Chicago cop Mike Torello. The murders of Ted Kehoe, a childhood friend of Torello with ties to the organization, and his associate Marilyn Stewart convince Breitel to take Luca, Taglia and Bartoli to trial. Torello finds himself being investigated by Breitel and the feds for corruption, based primarily on the testimony of Holman.


Despite Luca's outward appearance of propriety, Torello is convinced the gangster chieftain is anything but. When the Strike Force puts him under surveillance, Luca goes to court to get a restraining order. David Abrams argues that Luca's history of violence justifies the surveillance, but his personal vendetta against Luca for his father's death becomes obvious, and the judge grants the injunction.


Abrams descends into a haze of alcohol and drugs. Luca finds him strung out on peyote and lies that it was Chicago crime boss Phil Bartoli who ordered the hit that accidentally killed Abrams's father. He tells Abrams he was born to be part of the Outfit and offers him a job as his personal lawyer if he ever decides to clean himself up. Soon after, to the Strike Force's disbelief, Abrams shows up at Luca's door and takes the job.


The murder of a reporter writing a story about Luca leads the Strike Force to discover the truth about Luca's secret activities. Luca has made a deal with the U.S. military to smuggle weapons out of the country to revolutionary causes the government secretly supports. In exchange, the military turns a blind eye to the fact that Luca is smuggling narcotics into the U.S. from Mexico and Asia.


With this evidence, Hallahan convinces Congress to convene hearings to investigate the unholy alliance between the U.S. government and organized crime. But just as Luca is testifying, the hearings are adjourned because of a national emergency: North Vietnam has attacked a U.S. warship in the Gulf of Tonkin. Hallahan gets a warrant for Luca's arrest anyway, but Luca flees the country with Taglia and Goldman before it can be served, headed for Latin America. Hallahan gives Torello's Strike Force his blessing to pursue Luca onto foreign soil, but warns that outside the U.S. their badges will mean nothing.


According to Mann, the genesis of the project was to follow a group of police officers in a major crimes unit in 1963 and how they change over 20 hours of television, "in 1980, with very different occupations, in a different city and in a different time".[citation needed] He was influenced by the television series Police Story, and based Crime Story largely on the experiences of Chuck Adamson, a former Chicago police detective of 17 years.[1] Mann asked Adamson and Gustave Reininger to write the series pilot and a show bible.[2] Reininger was a former Wall Street international investment banker who had come to Mann's attention based on a screenplay he had written about arson investigators, and a French film that he had written and produced.[2] Reininger researched Crime Story by winning the confidence of Detective William Hanhardt, who put him in touch with undercover officers in Chicago. They sent him on meetings with organized crime figures. Reininger risked wearing a body microphone and recorder. After visiting the crime scene of the gangland slaying of bookmaker Al Brown, Reininger backed off his Mob interviews.[2] Adamson claimed that the stories depicted in the series were composites rather than actual events that happened, "but they'll be accurate".[1]


NBC head Brandon Tartikoff (who had started his career in Chicago) gave an order for a two-hour movie, which had a theatrical release in a handful of U.S. theaters to invited guests only.[4] Tartikoff also ordered 22 episodes which allowed Reininger and Adamson to tell a story with developing character arcs, and continuing stories (instead of episodic, self standing shows). Two episodes were made every three weeks, with shooting taking up more than 12 hours in a day, seven days a week.[5] By the second season, an average episode cost between $1.3 and 1.4 million (roughly the same as Miami Vice) because it was shot on location, set during the 1960s (requiring period-accurate props and costumes), and featured a large cast.[6]


Crime Story and its imitator[citation needed] Wiseguy were the prototypes for later arc-driven television series, such as 24 and The Sopranos that have continuing story lines over multiple episodes. In addition, in another measure of this series' influence, numerous actors and actresses that originated on Crime Story in recurring or guest-starring roles later ended up on Wiseguy, including Ray Sharkey, Steve Ryan, Debbie Harry, William Russ, Anthony Denison, Stanley Tucci, Ted Levine, Patricia Charbonneau, Darlanne Fleugel, and Kevin Spacey.


Frances Crawford is a passionate advocate of lifelong learning. In 2022, she graduated at the age of 60 with an MLitt (First) in Creative Writing from Glasgow University. She has published a number of short stories with disabled protagonists and is particularly interested in characters traditionally overlooked in fiction. She lives in Glasgow with her family, and is currently working on a crime novel.


Allan Gaw is a Scot who lives and works near Glasgow. He is a pathologist by training but now writes full-time. He writes short stories, novel length historic crime fiction and poetry. Recently, he won the UK Classical Association Creative Writing Competition, the International Alpine Fellowship Writing Prize and the International Globe Soup 7 day Writing Challenge. He has also had prose accepted for the literary journal, From Glasgow to Saturn, and for forthcoming anthologies from the Edinburgh Literary Salon and Clan Destine Press in Australia. His poetry has been published by Dreich, Soor Plooms Press and Black Bough Poetry.


Joseph Knox has taken the world of thrillers by storm with the first novel of the Aidan Waits Thriller series, and with True Crime Story he takes a side-step to write a standalone story. It follows the investigation conducted by a crime writer, the author himself, into a woman named Evenly Mitchell, who became obsessed with the disappearance of Zoe Nolan who, in 2011, walked out of her dorm room never to be seen again.


The novel is presented as a type of story withing a story, beginning in 2011 with the sudden disappearance of Zoe Nolan, a nineteen-year-old student from the city of Manchester. One day she simply slipped away from a party never to be seen again, leaving behind more than a few devastated people, including her parents, boyfriend, friends and twin sister.


The story of the good girl who in reality was tortured and corrupted is nothing new, but Joseph Knox handles the subject with good care and respect. I found myself reminded on more than one occasion that while this particular story might be fictional, there are plenty of real-life Zoe Nolans across the world, and nobody lights a candle for them.


True Crime Story by Joseph Knox is a rather interesting mystery thriller, successfully pulling off the experiment of writing a fictional story about a vanished young woman and structuring it like a non-fiction investigation. Despite a couple of small flaws here and there, it manages to intrigue with its multifaceted plot driven forward by a large cast of suspects with secrets aplenty.


Our verdict: The case has become its own character over the decades, but watching young actors the same age as Ramsey portray her gives this haunting story another chilling dimension.


The case: A tight-knit South Carolina community is ripped apart by a series of deadly crimes that all seem to involve one family: the Murdaughs. The true crime series Murdaugh Murders: A Southern Scandal shows how a prominent family used and abused their wealth and privilege to the extreme.


Our verdict: While the title of this docuseries is all about the perpetrators, Worst Roommate Ever centers the survivors and witnesses of these cohabitation crimes, using animation to capture the full scale of how disturbing some of these stories are. 041b061a72


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