Rare WWII VJ Day Film Footage Believed To Be Elizabeth "Black Dahlia" Short on Hollywood Blvd

April 6, 2017
Los Angeles, California

In recent weeks I have received numerous inquiries asking if the film footage that aired back in 2003 on Dateline and again in 2005 on 48 Hours CBS “Black Dahlia Confidential” (an hour show covering my investigation) was in fact that of the victim, Elizabeth  Short?

YouTube Elizabeth Short VJ Day Footage HERE.

Based on past and updated investigative findings since that show originally aired, my short answer is- YES.  I do believe that the woman filmed and seen riding in the open convertible on Hollywood Blvd on VJ Day, August 6, 1945 is in fact, the only known motion picture footage of Elizabeth Short in existence.
Judge for yourself?













Here’s the original FAQ as a PDF and a link to the YouTube summary as well.

FAQ53 as a PDF






  1. T. Martinez on April 6, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    Steve, It is nice to see her happy and enjoying herself…she was portrayed as a ‘loner’ but she does not look very alone! She seemed to know the soldier.
    People do not realize that at one time LA was not as populated as it is today, there was a fraction of the population then…and it wasn’t considered as desirable a place to live as it is today either.

    • Steve Hodel on April 6, 2017 at 8:59 pm

      T.M.: Agreed. I think the celebration of VJ Day, brought the whole world together. Finally, an end to so many years of pain and suffering. The common cause brought great joy to all people. No strangers. All embraced. Hugs and kisses worldwide. Yes, LA and “Hollywood” were much smaller places in 1945. Regards, Steve

  2. Kathy G. on April 11, 2017 at 11:05 pm

    You know Steve I always was convinced that this footage was of Elizabeth Short. It’s the shape of her face and that full head of hair with the large size rolling curls. I agree with TM that everyone was your friend on VJ Day and that everyone would have been celebrating and having a good time. She is vibrant, full of joy and very much alive on that day. It’s just very sad because maybe if she had just a little bit more time she might have eventually broken into the moving picture business or maybe advertisements or who knows? In those days, if you could get to Hollywood, you might very well get discovered. It was her dream.

  3. Tim on April 26, 2017 at 6:12 pm

    It’s Miss Short, no doubt. Her affinity for soldiers and the uniform, where else would she be on VE Day but at the parade.

  4. Steven Widdicombe on May 29, 2021 at 12:27 am

    Its too blurry to be to be 100% ( if the photo was evidence in a Capital case she where she is to be executed or incarcerated for so long she might prefer death, I would have to decline. But only for the 1% chance it’s an extremely similar looking woman and it is just too blurry to see her nose and ears which along with eye colour would guarantee and identity.
    That said however, and as an artist that can paint copies of Rembrandt that cannot be discerned from the original, I think your dead right on this one Steverino.
    The portrait photo in the book though is not her I’m sorry buddy and without any doubt at all.
    I also think the Bop pianist that actually replied to me for picking him as a jazz musician when I emailed the web master of the BDS site is terribly underestimated and I have credentials there too , in the form of a vocational IQ test that put me in the top .05 on the planet, and my conjecture there is Jon was genius and very likely correct. He was definitely correct about the graphic encryptions being intentional. However it is also very easy to read things not placed by the encrypting party’s hand in such an intentionally occluded data set. The head marks and hand writing parallels are perfect and the work of an extremely clever man categorised as I was in that vocational test as a “ “visual mathematician” which is precisely what Jon was aside from being a very good pianist, and being such little didn’t surprise the 95% was blind to his observations of a crook that thought how clever he was with encryptions I also noticed before I found his site back 2007.
    It’s either his guy or yours Steve. A copper doesn’t like coincidences and Man Rays (Centaur? was it) picture stunk to high heaven. Doctors and artists being quite attracted Occult fraternities some of which had been over run by Frankist Satanism quite literally by 1795 and no, we’re not stopped after Zeus help raise Isis’ pinafore a tad, as “they can’t be blamed for anything” even to the extent the Royal Archer did some wall whitewashing like old Huck; and think we can safely say the perpetrator
    or perpetrators shared more attributes with spitefully psychotic Satanists than “most” Christian affiliated possibilities.
    It was a spiteful and cowardly crime and the way the hat squad ran down a kid victim was despicable; in that regard at least, because like Jon I think those guys did know who did it. Homicide cops are extremely switched on guys themselves and very good at what they do and realising what had sent over the edge, and noticing his implied “affiliations” in the letters, knew he had in fact offed himself, saw no point in egotistical gratification of telling people they had wrapped it up when it also meant surviving parties would suffer immeasurably and need no further tragedies quite aside from the guy wanting a “square deal” and their previous obligations for those with ears to hear them.
    Be well all.
    That poor kid.
    Should you be right Steve, you must of had pretty rough childhood yourself, and there is some pretty interesting facts that give your suppositions a good deal of weight also. Regardless, they are all equal now; in earthly terms at least.

  5. Steven Widdicombe on May 29, 2021 at 12:31 am

    Sorry it’s edited terribly. I sat on my glasses yesterday

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