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John Travolta to Play Robert Shapiro in FX Miniseries 'American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson'

John Travolta, Robert Shapiro
In his first television starring role since Welcome Back, Kotter, award-winning actor and producer John Travolta will star as defense attorney Robert Shapiro in the FX miniseries American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, from Executive Producers Ryan Murphy, Nina Jacobson, Brad Simpson, Scott Alexander, Larry Karaszewski, Brad Falchuk, and Dante Di Loreto.

The two-time Academy Award nominated and Golden Globe(R) Award winning Travolta will portray Shapiro, a key member of O.J. Simpson's "Dream Team" during the sensational murder trial. He will also serve as a producer of the 10-part miniseries.

Travolta joins a cast which includes David Schwimmer as O.J. Simpson's confidant and attorney Robert Kardashian, Academy Award winner Cuba Gooding Jr. as O.J. Simpson, and Emmy and Golden Globe Award nominated actress Sarah Paulson as prosecutor Marcia Clark, who currently stars in American Horror Story: Freak Show.

American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson is written by Golden Globe-winning producers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (Big Eyes, The People v. Larry Flynt). Emmy and Golden Globe award winning producer and Emmy Award winning Director Ryan Murphy (American Horror Story, The Normal Heart) will direct the first episode. American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson is produced by Fox 21 Television Studios and FX Productions. Production begins this spring in Los Angeles.

Based on the book "The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson" by Jeffrey Toobin, the miniseries is a look at the O.J. Simpson trial told from the perspective of the lawyers. It explores the chaotic behind-the-scenes dealings and maneuvering on both sides of the court, and how a combination of prosecution overconfidence, defense shrewdness, and the LAPD's history with the city's African-American community gave a jury what it needed: reasonable doubt.

John Travolta will next be seen starring opposite Christopher Plummer and Tye Sheridan in The Forger. Travolta recently completed production on three feature films: Criminal Activities, a crime thriller co-starring Michael Pitt and directed by Jackie Earle Haley; In A Valley of Violence, a revenge-driven western co-starring Ethan Hawke and directed by Ti West; and Life On The Line, an action/drama co-starring Kate Bosworth and directed by David Hackl.

Some of Travolta's other film credits include Saturday Night Fever, Grease, Urban Cowboy, Carrie, Blowout, Look Who's Talking, Pulp Fiction, Michael, Phenomenon, A Civil Action, Broken Arrow, Face/Off, Primary Colors, Get Shorty, Swordfish, Wild Hogs, Hairspray and Savages.

Travolta is also a licensed pilot and currently serves as Qantas Airways Global Goodwill "Ambassador-at-Large." He is also a business aircraft brand ambassador for Learjet, Challenger and Global jets for the world's leading business aircraft manufacturer, Bombardier. His other aviation association is with the Breitling Watch Company, for whom he advertises the luxury aviation watches as a professional aviator, and his advertisements can be seen worldwide.

Travolta, along with his wife, actress Kelly Preston, is very involved in their charity, The Jett Travolta Foundation, which raises money for children with educational needs.

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