Tom McCarthy to direct movie based on 'S-Town' podcast Participant Media, which worked with McCarthy on best picture-winning 'Spotlight,' is behind the adaptation. Tom McCarthy is in talks to direct the feature adaptation of the popular podcast S-Town. The movie would see McCarthy re-team with Participant Media, the production company behind best picture-winning Spotlight. The podcast, from Serial and This American Life, follows an Alabama man named John who contacts host Brian Reed to have him investigate a supposed murder by the son of a wealthy family in his home town, which he openly despises. The story then delves into John's own backstory, filled with everything from clocks buried treasure to a giant hedge maze behind his family home.