FilmRise, the New York-based film and television studio and streaming network, and Cosgrove/Meurer Productions, the producers behind the Unsolved Mysteries franchise, are teaming up to produce a hour-long tribute to the series that helped launch the true-crime genre on television.
Timed to coincide with the anniversary of the very first episode of the series, Unsolved Mysteries: Behind the Legacy will go behind the scenes and reveal the evolution of the landmark series.
Unsolved Mysteries began its life as a series of seven specials on NBC, hosted by Raymond Burr, Karl Malden and finally Robert Stack. The show with Stack hosting was picked up to series by the network in 1988, where it aired for nine seasons before moving to CBS for two more seasons. Virginia Madson was added as a co-host for the final CBS season. The series was revived by Lifetime in 2000 and Stack hosted an additional 102 episodes before the series ended in 2022 following an illness and the eventual death of Stack.
The series was revived again in 2007 for the cable network Spike, this time hosted by actor Dennis Farina. The episodes were a mix of new stories and old episodes updated and reedited. 175 episodes of his version aired before being canceled in 2010.
An un-hosted version of the show aired in three multi-episode "chapters" on Netflix, beginning in 2022.
Unsolved Mysteries: Behind the Legacy is timed to coincide with the anniversary of the very first episode of the series and will include interviews with co-creators Terry Dunn Meurer and John Cosgrove, along with long-time producers and directors of the show.
According to a press release, the special will "pull back the curtain on Unsolved Mysteries. The crew divulges behind-the-scenes stories, covering all aspects of the show from research to filming to solving mysteries. The special also features never-before-seen outtakes of host Robert Stack and a look into some fan-favorite cases."
"In the early days of FilmRise, Unsolved Mysteries was one of the very first programs we distributed," said Max Einhorn, FilmRise EVP of acquisitions and co-productions, in a statement. “The industry was in the embryonic stages of AVOD and FAST, and the series gained fresh momentum and widespread success via this new medium of home entertainment. We feel Unsolved Mysteries is embedded into the DNA of FilmRise, and credit it as one of the reasons for the company’s rapid success. We are honored to be a driving force in the creation of this tribute special."
"We are so grateful for FilmRise’s unwavering support of Unsolved Mysteries," said Terry Dunn Meurer of Cosgrove/Meurer Productions, in a statement. "Their dedication to providing a global platform for the series has allowed our loyal fans as well as a new generation of viewers the ability to enjoy the show and help solve a mystery. Our mission has always been to involve the audience in the series, and through Unsolved Mysteries: Behind the Legacy, FilmRise has given CMP the unique opportunity to share with our fans a behind the scenes look at how they helped make the series a success."
Also, subscribe to my free, daily Too Much TV newsletter at toomuchtv.substack.com