HBO News Blog

John Tuturro Replaces Robert De Niro in CRIMINAL JUSTICE

By Jef Dinsmore on Apr 22, 2014 to The Night of

CRIMINAL JUSTICE was to be James Gandolfini’s series return to HBO. He was to play Jack Stone, an ambulance-chasing New York City attorney who gets in over-his-head when he takes on the case of a Pakistani accused of murdering a girl on the Upper West Side. HBO, at first passed on it, and then reconsidered and approved it.  The project came to a complete halt however after Gandolfini’s death, but HBO still People_JohnTuturrowanted to move the work forward.

 You might remember that it was then retooled as a miniseries with Robert De Niro attached to the Jack Stone role. Mr. De Niro has since dropped out of the project due to scheduling conflicts, but HBO still moves forward with the project. They have now placed John Tuturro in the lead role. The piece lists Mr. G. as producer with Steve Zaillian directing the Richard Price script.

 For some reason, maybe just out of respect for the late THE SOPRANOS’ star, HBO believes in the work. It could have scrapped it at any time, but now with John Tuturro on board this seven-hour miniseries can continue its production. No actual date and time has been announced and perhaps, except for the original pilot, there is no actual footage as of yet. We will keep an eye on its slow development and hope that nothing sets back Tuturro’s turn as Jack Stone in CRIMINAL JUSTICE.  

  • loco73

    You know what, I am glad this project is going forward, and perhaps even better that it has been turned into a mini-series. In the long-series format, I am just not sure how long they could have stretched it out, especially if it only focused on one case.
    As everyone else, I miss James Gandolfini a lot, and would have loved to see him back on HBO. He has done some of his finest work here. Yet I was quite pleased that Robert De Niro had been chosen to replace Gandolfini. While De Niro’s resume and pedigree as an actor speak for themselves, lets be honest, over the past decade and a half, his record has been more miss than hit, in the roles he has chosen and movies he has made. Besides movies like “City By The Sea”, “The Good Shepherd” (which he also directed) and supporting roles in movies like “Silver Linings Playbook” and (a small one in) “American Hustle”, and a few others, his other roles have been duds, and some of the movies even atrocious (cough, “The Big Wedding, cough)! He sure needs a starring vehicle once more, as it appears that he is still choosing to actively pursue acting projects. Too bad that he wasn’t able to complete this miniseries. Hopefully he’ll be involved with HBO in some other project.
    Still, I for one think, that having chosen John Turturro as a replacement was exactly the right thing to do. He is a tremendous actor by any measurement. A veteran of screen, both big and small, stage etc. Actually, with his demeanour, look and maneurisms, he will fit in a way much better with the image of an ambulance chasing lawyer…and I mean that as a compliment, not an insult. He has that whole concotion of the slightly sleazy, weird, down-on-his luck loser character down to a t. As an example, think of his role in “Miller’s Crossing”, the Cohen brothers masterful take on the gangster movie genre, and you will know what I mean.
    Turturro will be awesome!

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