Netflix’s next true crime doc will be about infamous serial killer Dennis Nilsen

It will be about the autobiography published after his death, in which he confessed to more crimes


Netflix is producing a documentary feature all about serial killer Dennis Nilsen, with a focus on the autobiography which was published after his death – in which he confessed to three more attacks.

Dennis Nilsen, who was known as the Muswell Hill murderer, killed at least 12 young men and boys between 1978 and 1983. He was sentenced to life in prison in 1983, but died there in 2018 when he was aged 72. His brutal murders were often of homeless people or men he had met in pubs.

Nilsen had previously bid to get his autobiography published in the 1990s, but this was blocked by the government. But now the book, History of a Drowning Boy, has been put together from thousands of pages of notes he made in jail. It is a friend of Nilsen who has now published the memoir – which is said to be filled with disturbing pictures and descriptions of his crimes. In a letter sent from prison, Nilsen wrote that it would “make no attempt to ‘pretty-up’ my history. It was what it was”. The book was published last week.

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This, and the crimes which lead to him being jailed, will be explored in a new feature by Netflix and put together by the creators of other true crime series, Don’t F**k With Cats, according to Deadline. It will be directed by Michael Harte, who worked as an editor on documentary Three Identical Strangers as well as Don’t F**k With Cats.

Alongside the book, the documentary will use Nilsen’s personal archive, as well as interviews with the victims’ family members, survivors, the police and journalists who covered the case.

Nilsen’s story was also covered earlier this year with a dramatised, three-part series on ITV – with David Tennant playing the killer.

The release date for the Dennis Nilsen Netflix documentary has not yet been announced. For all the latest Netflix news, quizzes, drops and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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