Filmmaker Joe Berlinger has Ted Bundy on the brain.
He’s got “Conversations With a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes” — a Netflix documentary about the madman — and also directed “Extremely Evil, Shockingly Wicked Vile,” a feature film about Bundy and his girlfriend, Elizabeth Kloepfer, starring Zac Efron and Lily Collins. It will debut at the Sundance Film Festival later this month.
Bundy was executed 30 years ago after killing dozens of women in Washington, Utah, Colorado and Florida and giving birth to the term “serial killer.”
In “Conversations With a Killer,” Berlinger speaks to a variety of sources — journalist Stephen Michaud, who interviewed Bundy in a Florida prison, Washington State detective Kathleen McChesney and many law enforcement personnel — to assemble a chilling portrait of a killer who outfoxed nearly everybody on his trail. Bundy himself is heard on the tapes recounting his murderous spree.
“We’ve never gotten into the mind of a killer this way. When you listen to these tapes, they give the audience a very different view of what makes him tick,” Berlinger tells The Post. “America only has five percent of the world’s population but 67 percent of its serial killers. At any given time, the FBI estimates that there are 25 to 50 active serial killers operating in this country at any time.
“But Bundy’s name rises to the top,” he says. “He taps into our deepest fears. He was so likable, so charismatic. It proves you don’t really know the person next to you.”
With his ready-made grin and harmless, newscaster good looks, Theodore Robert Bundy was able to fool a lot of people often. Part of the problem in linking him to the murders was the reluctance of police departments to share information. Investigative techniques were primitive compared to what we accept as normal today. There was no DNA evidence, no central databases, no fax machines.
“Back in the late ’70s we didn’t have the technology we have now,” McChesney says.