*As folks reflected last week on the 20th anniversary of the infamous verdict in the O.J. Simpson case, Cuba Gooding Jr. is gearing up to deliver his portrayal of the former sports great in FX’s upcoming miniseries “American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson.”
As for whether or not he feels the pressure of portraying the central figure in the so-called Trial of the Century, Gooding relayed that while he isn’t feeling it now, things are sure to change.
“I probably will [feel the pressure] when it’s all said and done for people to watch it, but when I’m in it, I’m in it,” Gooding, Jr. recently told Variety. “It’s a character. You have to be the character and be confident. But yeah, reflecting on it, I will be hoping that the intent of what (director) Ryan Murphy wanted to create in the story comes through. And I think it will, because no one pays attention to detail like this guy.”
Expanding on how much detail was necessary to accurately play Simpson, Gooding revealed that he had plenty of material to draw on for getting down every aspect of the former athlete’s personality.
“It’s a minutia of watching tapes and reading interviews and watching video,” Gooding shared. “Usually, when you prepare for a role, you can spend weeks or months and then when you do it, you’re pretty much in it. But this is like, everyday, they’re like, ‘Oh, [he] did a workout video.’ … Everyday there’s something.”
Gooding is among a star-studded cast in “American Crime Story.” Among those featured in the ten-episode series are John Travolta as Robert Shapiro, Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark, David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian, Selma Blair as Kris Jenner and Connie Britton as Faye Resnick.
In Gooding’s eyes, the level of talent in “American Crime Story” is more than enough to warrant him bringing his “A+ game” to the project.
“It’s like playing basketball with the Lakers,” the Oscar winner said of his castmates. “You got to have your best game because everyone around you is better than you. … On this set, if you don’t come with your A+ game, you’re going to get blown over. You really will.”
“American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson” is set to premiere in 2016 on FX.