Albuquerque Journal - Parade - - PERSONALITY PARADE - Pa­ good­ing

It be­came one of the most sen­sa­tional mur­der tri­als in his­tory when, in 1994, for­mer foot­ball star O. J. Simp­son was pros­e­cuted for the deaths of his ex-wife Ni­cole Brown Simp­son and her friend Ron­ald Gold­man. Now it will be event TV when FX pre­mieres its 10- episode minis­eries The Peo­ple v. O. J. Simp­son: Amer­i­can Crime

Story on Feb. 2. Os­car win­ner Cuba Good­ing Jr., 48, tack­les the role of the fallen grid­iron leg­end.

How did you ap­proach play­ing O.J.? I had met him back in his hey­day. I’m a foot­ball fan, and I know his ca­reer with the [Buf­falo] Bills, and that he’s a Heis­man Tro­phy win­ner, so my fo­cus was to por­tray him with star mag­ni­tude and charisma, and as a po­lar­iz­ing fig­ure.

What was it like to work with co-star John Tra­volta, who plays de­fense at­tor­ney Robert Shapiro? You want to make sure that you come to the set pre­pared. It raises the stakes for ev­ery­body in­volved. Off cam­era, it was won­der­ful to sit and hear him tell sto­ries of his amaz­ing en­coun­ters with other icons in the busi­ness.

Did this ex­pe­ri­ence change your opin­ion as to O.J.’s guilt or in­no­cence? From day to day, script to script, I would have con­flict­ing opin­ions. I tell peo­ple, “We’re not here to con­vince you of his guilt or in­no­cence, but I guar­an­tee af­ter you see th­ese 10 hours you’ll un­der­stand how they came to the ver­dict.”

How did Good­ing re­search his role as O.J. Simp­son? Go to to find out.

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