John Travolta to play OJ Simpson lawyer in first TV role since 1979

The 60-year-old actor will appear alongside David Schwimmer in American Crime Story

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John Travolta‘s last major TV role was in 1979 but the Pulp Fiction star has ended his small screen hiatus to portray O.J. Simpson’s defence attorney Robert Shapiro.

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The 60-year-old actor will star in American Crime Story: The People v. OJ Simpson, a ten-part series dramatising the infamous double murder trial of former American football star OJ Simpson.

Friends actor David Schwimmer will join Travolta as lawyer Robert Kardashian, the father of reality stars Kim, Khloe and Kourtney Kardashian and a friend of Simpson who volunteered on his defence team.

Other cast members include Jerry Maguire actor Cuba Gooding Jr, who plays Simpson, and American Horror Story’s Sarah Paulson as prosecuting attorney Marcia Clark.

Millions tuned in to watch television coverage of the OJ Simpson trial, which took place between November 1994 and October 1995. The former NFL player and actor, now 67, was accused of murdering his ex-wife Nicole Simpson and waiter Ronald Goldman.

Travolta’s last TV character was heartthrob Vinnie Barbarino in sitcom Welcome Back, Kotter, which ran until 1979. In subsequent years the actor chose to focus on his film career, appearing in high-profile movies including Pulp Fiction, Hairspray and crime comedy Get Shorty. 

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American Crime Story is expected to air on FX later this year.