“In 1996 French film producer Sophie Toscan du Plantier is found dead near her holiday home. There are no witnesses and no known motive. The police suspect one man in this community but they can’t make a charge stick and he refuses to leave, living under the glare of suspicion ever since.”
In West Cork, Sam Bungey and Jennifer Forde bring one of Ireland’s most widely known tragedies to international listeners. The podcast explores the murder case of Sophie Toscan du Plantier, a woman found bludgeoned to death outside of her vacation cottage in a remote area of West Cork just before Christmas in 1996.
Sam and Jennifer attempt to pick up the pieces of an investigation mired with problems for decades. They immerse themselves in the small community, talking to those disturbed by the horror and its legacy. Surprisingly, this includes the main suspect, who remains rather unusually involved with the case.
Intimate and measured, West Cork keeps listeners on the edge of doubt and certainty. Listeners will experience the emotional “push and pull” that Sam and Jennifer experienced themselves during their investigation.
In this episode of MetaPod, Jennifer and Sam explain how they tackled the storytelling challenges that a complex, unsolved, international murder case presents. They reflect on their own thinking and creative processes for the podcast, describing the unique context and characters involved. Also, Sam and Jennifer reveal the story behind the photograph on the podcast artwork.
Show notes for West Cork
- The couple behind the West Cork podcast, Irish Examiner
- Sophie Toscan du Plantier’s son makes fresh appeal: ‘You have a murderer in Ireland’, The Irish Times
- Ian Bailey is offered lie detector test over murder of Sophie Toscan du Plantier, The Irish Independent
- Explore West Cork
About Sam Bungey and Jennifer Forde
Sam Bungey and Jennifer Forde have worked together in podcasting for six years. They produced and hosted West Cork for Audible, and an 8-part Spotify/BBC Studios series on the punk band the Clash, hosted by Chuck D.
As an award-winning documentary television producer, Jennifer has worked with the BBC and Britain’s leading independent production companies. She believes that the most important part of telling any story is letting the people who have lived it tell it for you.
As a journalist, Sam has contributed to This American Life, the Guardian, the Daily Beast and elsewhere. He started his career in Dublin with a national monthly magazine, Mongrel.