Payne Lindsey is an Atlanta-based director, award-winning documentary filmmaker, and the co-creator and host of the hit podcasts “Up and Vanished”, “Atlanta Monster” and “Radio Rental”.
Driven by a new-found passion for both the true crime genre and investigative journalism, Lindsey decided to investigate the disappearance of beauty queen and school teacher Tara Grinstead, a notorious decade-old cold case from South Georgia. At the time, he hoped to develop Tara’s story into his own documentary film project.
As Lindsey chronicled his investigation in real-time, week by week, in audio form, he ventured into a new field, podcasting. The events of the next 12 months turned Tara Grinstead's case into one of the biggest crime stories of the year. “Up and Vanished” propelled Grinstead's case into the mainstream media, uncovering new evidence that helped to crack the 11-year-old cold case in early 2017 and lead to two arrests. Today, the series has garnered more than 250 million downloads.
On the strength of the podcast’s success, Lindsey launched Atlanta-based content creation company Tenderfoot TV, with his friend and business partner Donald Albright.Since its launch, they’ve successfully released multiple successful true crime podcast franchises including “Up and Vanished,” “Monster,”“Sworn,” and “To Live and Die in LA,” amassing over 500 million downloads in total in less than three years. Under Tenderfoot TV, Lindsey has taken on a new missing person’s case in “Up and Vanished: Season 2,” debuting at No. 1 on Apple Podcasts when it premiered in August 2018, in addition to investigating the Atlanta Child Murders in “Atlanta Monster,” which also debuted at No. 1 on Apple Podcasts. Most recently, Lindsey transports listeners into a mysterious world with real-life scary stories in “Radio Rental”, Tenderfoot TV’s newest podcast. He serves as executive producer on various other Tenderfoot TV podcasts including “Monster: The Zodiac Killer,” “To Live and Die in LA, and the company’s latest true crime releases ''Culpable” and ''Insomniac”.
Additionally, using his documentary skillset, “Up and Vanished” was brought to the TV screen as a docu-series for Oxygen Networks in November 2018 and has been picked up as a full series.
The core of Lindsey’s work, whether it is investigating, podcasting, or directing, continues to be storytelling that serves as a catalyst for change. When “Atlanta Monster” came out, the New Yorkerwrote Lindsey and the Tenderfoot TV team are doing a “deeply worthy thing” examining these cases that haven’t gotten the attention they deserve. He hopes to continue shedding light on stories that need to be told.