Oprah to Weigh In on If I Did It Debate

Posted on August 24, 2007

Oprah Winfrey will be hosting an O.J. Simpson book-themed episode of her show in which the family of Ron Goldman and Denise Brown, sister of slain Nicole Brown Simpson, will square off over the publication of If I Did It. The Goldmans have the rights and will publish the book, but Denise wants a boycott of the book saying it is disgusting.

Denise Brown, sister of O.J.'s dead ex, Nicole, and Fred and Kim Goldman, father and sister of Nicole's dead pal, Ron, agreed to confront each other about the publication on the Sept. 13 edition of the talk show hosted by the queen of book sales. Denise Brown wants a boycott of the book in which Simpson details how he would have murdered his ex-wife and her friend on the night of June 12, 1994 -- if he'd done it. She has expressed shock and horror that the Goldman family reached a deal for "If I Did It," to be published by New York-based Beaufort Books.

Simpson was acquitted of the murders, but a civil court jury in 1997 found him liable for the deaths and ordered him to pay $33.5 million in damages to the Brown and Goldman families. In March, an L.A. Superior Court judge ruled the rights to the book must be put up for auction and all proceeds paid to Fred Goldman, who is still looking to collect on that $33.5 million judgment against the football star turned actor/sports commentator. Before being awarded rights to the book, back when O.J. himself stood to see some coin off its sales, Goldman stood side by side with Denise Brown in being outraged at its publication.

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Oprah will weigh in on the book for the first time on what's sure to be a highly rated episode of her syndicated talk show -- and just three days into its new season. Everyone will be waiting to see whether she gives the concept thumbs up or down, because you know what can happen to a book when it gets Oprah's imprimatur. Ka-ching!

Now that Oprah is involved, this story is clearly not going to die. So we are resigned to following along. Will Oprah approve of the book being published or will she side with Denise Brown and say the book should never have seen the light of day? If Oprah approves of it (because the proceeds will go to the Goldmans) then it will no doubt sell. Frankly, we think the manuscript belongs in the nearest trash bin.



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