'Louis at his best.' Louis Theroux is releasing a book about his life and unexpected career.


When Louis Theroux was in his early 20s, he landed a job on a satirical news show called TV Nation. 

He had walked into the job interview with US documentary filmmaker Michael Moore saying “I’ll do anything”.

“I genuinely meant it,” he’s said in the years since. “Writing, researching or doing anything.”

As a correspondent on the show, Theroux got his first taste at exploring bizarre American subcultures on screen. In the two and a half decades since, he’s made this his speciality. Now, he’s releasing a book about the journey of his career, as well as the private life he’s lived alongside it.

Gotta Get Theroux This: My life and strange times on television is set to be released on September 19.


“It’s about me, how I got into TV, highlights, lowlights, inbetweenlights,” Theroux wrote on Twitter.

In Pan MacMillan’s synopsis, they’ve described the book as being “filled with wry observation, larger-than-life characters, and self-deprecating humour”.

“This is Louis at his insightful and honest best.”

It promises to explore some of Theroux’s experiences with porn stars and wrestlers, neo-Nazis and serial killers – subjects he’s always approached with unmitigated curiosity. The book will also focus on some of the 49-year-old’s challenges and regrets, including the time he spent with Jimmy Savile.

Jimmy Savile was an English TV presenter and radio personality, known for hosting Jim’ll Fix It, a show that granted the wishes of a number of viewers (usually children) each week, and Top of the Pops, the iconic BBC music chart show. In 2000, an episode of Theroux’s series When Louis Met… aired featuring Savile, who was 73 at the time. He had been accused of paedophilia and sexual assault, but at the time of Theroux’s documentary, the allegations had been vehemently denied by Savile, who even took legal action against some of his accusers.

Watch the trailer for Louis Theroux’s 2017 series Dark States. Post continues after video.


After Savile’s death in October 2011, hundreds more allegations were made against him – the scale of which police described as “unprecedented”. In 2013, it was reported that 214 of the allegations made against him would have been criminal offenses had they been reported at the time. It was also found that sixteen of those who said they had been raped by Savile were under the age of consent (16), and four were under the age of ten.

Speaking to Mamamia in 2017, Theroux said if he could go back and do anything differently, it would be his time with Savile.

“You know I wish I could go back knowing what I know now and confront Jimmy Savile, you know, while he was alive, while I was making the program,” he said.

“I think we’d all as a society in Britain… it would’ve been massively healthier, more salutary for his victims and the wider community to see him having to face in court, an investigation, the consequences of what he’d done.

“But sadly, I was never able to do that.”

In October 2016, Theroux revisited his time with Savile in a documentary titled Louis Theroux: Savile. In it, he seems aware, as Karen Boyle writes, “of his own complicity in the myth-making that ensured their [Savile’s victims] silence for so long”. He listens to testimonies of these victims and talks to the people he first heard speak about the rumours around Jimmy Savile. It seems this was his attempt to give a voice to those he feels he didn’t give justice to.

His book, no doubt, will delve further into the ups and downs of Theroux’s career, and the personal and interpersonal tensions audiences don’t necessarily see when we watch him on screen.