back to top

Best Hollywood Takes On Crazy Real-Life Crimes

Crime never pays. Unless it's scripted, casted, and put on the big screen for all to enjoy. Here are some of our favorite true crime-inspired films and shows.

Posted on

Catch Me If You Can

This 2002 box office smash featured Leonardo DiCaprio as the real life con artist, Frank Abagnale who swindled millions of dollars posing as a pilot, doctor, teaching assistant, and a prosecutor all before he turned 19. Abagnale was eventually imprisoned, but released on the grounds that he provide his expertise to help the federal government catch cons like himself.

Bonnie and Clyde

This 1967 film depicted the wild escapades of outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, who traveled the country smoking, robbing banks, and shooting anyone who got in their way. The couple was eventually ambushed and killed in 1934, after a two-year spree committing over 100 felonies.


Charlize Theron underwent a dramatic makeover to portray the prostitute-turned-serial killer Aileen Wournos in this 2003 film. Between 1989 and 1990, Wournos killed seven men, was charged for six of those, and was executed by lethal injection in 2002.

American Gangster

Denzel Washington stars as Frank Lucas, limo driver-turned-heroine-dealing crime boss in this 2007 dramatic biopic. Lucas was responsible for changing the Harlem crime scene and smuggling copious amounts of heroine into the United States during the Vietnam War. After only five years in prison, Lucas was put into witness protection program and sentenced to time served plus lifetime parole.

Boardwalk Empire

In this prohibition era HBO series, Steve Buscemi stars as Nucky Thompson, a character based on former Atlantic City political figure, bootlegger, and gangster Enoch L. Johnson. Johnson may appear charming and lovable on one side, but his violent nature and corrupt character are slowly revealed throughout the captivating series.

Orange is the New Black

Piper Kerman, played by Taylor Schilling, is sent to women's federal prison after carrying drug money for her ex girlfriend. This Netflix original series is a hilarious and enthralling account of her time in the pen.

See More from Orange Is the New Black

The Orange Is the New Black Zinepak featuring songs from season one, including the GRAMMY-nominated theme song, "You've Got TIme" by Regina Spektor, is coming May 13! Pre-order your copy now at