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To Catch a Killer 

Unrated | | Biography, Crime, Drama | TV Mini-Series (1992)
3:16 | Trailer
"To Catch a Killer" tells the true gruesome story of John Wayne Gacy - a good friend and helpful neighbour, a great child entertainer, a respectful businessman, and a violent serial killer ... See full summary »




Nominated for 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »





Complete series cast summary:
Brian Dennehy ...  John Wayne Gacy 2 episodes, 1992
Michael Riley ...  Joe Kozenczak 2 episodes, 1992
Margot Kidder ...  Rachel Grayson 2 episodes, 1992
Meg Foster ...  Attorney Carlson 2 episodes, 1992
Martin Julien ...  Koslo 2 episodes, 1992
Scott Hylands ...  Paxton 2 episodes, 1992
David Eisner David Eisner ...  Williams 2 episodes, 1992
John Boylan John Boylan ...  Atkins 2 episodes, 1992
Tony De Santis ...  DeMarco 2 episodes, 1992
Mark Humphrey ...  King 2 episodes, 1992
Gary Reineke Gary Reineke ...  Petrie 2 episodes, 1992
Tim Progosh Tim Progosh ...  Morris 2 episodes, 1992
Danny Pawlick Danny Pawlick ...  Santori 2 episodes, 1992
Bruce Ramsay ...  Bragg 2 episodes, 1992
Brenda Bazinet ...  Alice Pearson 2 episodes, 1992


"To Catch a Killer" tells the true gruesome story of John Wayne Gacy - a good friend and helpful neighbour, a great child entertainer, a respectful businessman, and a violent serial killer who raped and murdered over 30 young boys. Written by Jaromir Krol <jaromirk@kr.onet.pl>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Unrated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


The two-part mini-series made its television debut in Canada on the CTV television network in January 1992. In the U.S., it aired in syndication and on several Tribune-owned stations on different dates in May 1992: New York City (WPIX-TV) and Chicago (WGN-TV): May 18-19, 1992; Los Angeles (KTLA-TV): May 13-14, 1992. Some web sources mistakenly identified the FOX Television Network as the distributor of the mini-series. See more »


In the scene where the detective is confronting Gacy, the first time while Gacy has his back to the bar, you can see the mike and boom at least on three different cuts. See more »


John Wayne Gacy: [as Paxton sits at his table] Wait a minute, who the hell are you?
Paxton: [gestures to DeMarco and King] I'm their boss. I bring you regards, from John Miklovich... said he worked for you.
John Wayne Gacy: I don't remember anybody with a name like that, do you?
[Koslo shakes his head]
Paxton: That's funny, he described you perfectly: loud, big belly. Waiter! What are you drinking, John?
John Wayne Gacy: [snatches pad and pencil from waiter] Who the hell do you think you're talking to? Give me that thing. I want your name and shield number right here,...
See more »

Alternate Versions

When the movie first came out; in the closing narration, the narrator said Gacy was on Death Row. But after Gacy's execution in 1994, it was changed and the narrator said instead "Gacy would be on Death Row for 14 years till finally being executed". See more »


Featured in WatchMojo: Top 10 Films About Serial Killers (2018) See more »

User Reviews

Dennehy is outstanding
21 July 2004 | by bholly72See all my reviews

This is a top-flight procedural, based on how one persistent cop finally captured John Wayne Gacy, but what really makes it stand out from the crowd is Brian Dennehy's outstanding portrayal of Gacy. Dennehy has immense charm, but here he shows he can turn on a dime an convert it instantly into stomach-churning menace. There is one scene in which Dennehy shows Gacy's dark side starting to come out at an inappropriate moment, and then catching himself -- it is one of the finest pieces of acting I have ever seen anywhere. The look of repressed, murderous lust appearing on his fact and then being put back in the box is something I'll never forget. Neither Brando nor Olivier could have topped it. Watch it; you'll enjoy it a lot.

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Canada | USA



Release Date:

May 1992 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

To Catch a Killer See more »

Filming Locations:

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


(video) | (video) | (video)

Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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