Fiction, it seems, is way more fun than real life. That’s because you can rewrite the ending.
Marcia Clark disliked the real ending of the O.J. Simpson murder trial: She lost; he won.
But now she’s helping produce a fictional series. As ABC’s Jori Arancio explains it, an assistant district attorney “suffers a devastating defeat after prosecuting an A-list movie star for double-murder …. Eight years later, when the same star is under suspicion for yet another murder, Maya is lured back.”
Part of that is like real life, but there are detours. “Maya goes to live on this incredible horse farm,” said Clark, 65. “I wish I had thought of that.”
She did quit trial law, but she didn’t run away.
“Marcia stood and fought,” said Robin Tunney, who plays Maya. “She wrote books; she’s got an unscripted show. My character ran away. (She) let that loss define her; Marcia didn’t.”
Two years after the Simpson trial, Clark co-wrote a book about it. Some 14 years later, she switched to fiction, writing six books with a heroine as prosecutor, then three with a heroine as defense attorney. She’s also done non-fiction cable shows, including “Marcia Clark Investigates the First 48.”
And now she’s helping create another prosecutor – one who’s a jump from her own life.
Maya, we’re told, was a fun person, leading the office birthday parties. And Clark? “I never was – and I’m still not – fun,” she said. And the trial “made me a much more depressed person.”
To an outsider, it seemed to be a mismatch in resources, with Clark fighting a platoon of big-money lawyers. But she sees the real gap as “not so much the manpower as the starpower.”
That’s true for a movie star like Simpson or for pop-culture figures, she said. “Casey Anthony became a celebrity, somehow …. It’s a starpower that they bring to the courtroom and it does skew the
way the jury views the evidence.”
She lost what some considered an easy case. The experience, she said, was “watching justice being thwarted on a daily basis. Justice was a mission to me and a very important one …. It was very painful.”
So she retreated from the courtroom … until TV gave her a rematch.
But don’t assume the prosecutor wins. Scott Cohen, who plays the defense lawyer, said viewers may keep changing their mind about whether the guy is guilty. “We all took bets on who the killer was.”
— “The Fix,” 10 p.m. Mondays, ABC; 10 episodes, starting March 18