John Turturro tags in for Robert De Niro in HBO’s ‘Criminal Justice’
The cast of the courtroom drama miniseries has undergone yet another shift. Following Robert De Niro’s exit, the cable network has brought in John Turturro for the lead role, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Attached to headline “Criminal Justice” since September 2013, Robert De Niro was forced to step down due to a scheduling conflict, according to the Hollywood news website. The star will be replaced by John Turturro, the New York actor frequently seen in the films of Spike Lee and the Coen brothers.
In the seven-episode miniseries, the actor will play Jack Stone, a lawyer defending a young Pakistani man accused of murdering his wife. The role was initially developed for “The Sopranos” star James Gandolfini, who died in June 2013.
An adaptation of a British series aired in 2008 and 2009 on BBC One, “Criminal Justice” is written by Richard Price (“The Color of Money,” “The Wire”) and will be directed by Steven Zaillian, the screenwriter who won an Oscar in 1994 for his script for “Schindler’s List.” The original version depicted the British judicial system, and each five-episode season followed the story of a defendant from arrest to sentencing.
The project will not be John Turturro’s first stint in television; the actor won an Emmy in 2004 for his performance on “Monk,” in which he played Ambrose, the agoraphobic brother of the famous detective played by Tony Shalhoub.