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Boise Filmmaker Preps For Documentary On Idaho Serial Killer

Frankie Barnhill
Boise State Public Radio

Bronwyn Leslie is a busy woman. The Boise actor and musician was recently awarded a $5,000 grant from the Idaho Film Office to produce a documentary about Lyda Southard, the famous Idaho serial killer.

Southard lived in Twin Falls around the turn of the 20th century. She is thought to have poisoned five men -- including four of her husbands -- for the insurance money.

The Times-News reports Leslie will "include a chronology of Southard’s life using archival materials, expert testimonials, interviews with area historians and reenactments."

Leslie’s interest was sparked when she portrayed the role of Southard during a Halloween improvisation show a few years ago. “I just became fascinated by the story and kind of sat on it for three years,” she said. When she met David Thompson, now producer for the documentary, Leslie discovered they shared an interest in Southard’s story. The story is a hidden gem, Thompson said, and they want to showcase it. Thompson said Leslie is incredibly creative and wants to bring Southard’s voice into the documentary in a way she’s not normally portrayed. “We really want to get into the head of Lyda and made people experience her perspective a little bit more,” Thompson said.

Leslie and her producer David Thompson say they'll begin production in December or January. Before that, the filmmaker -- also a musician -- is preparing to leave for a ten-week music tour under her stage name: Lionsweb. The Idaho Film Office gave out six awards to filmmakers around the state.

Frankie Barnhill was the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast.