[02/25/05 - 12:00 AM]
E! Announces Team of Legal Analysts That Will Join Host James Curtis in the E! News Special: 'Accused: The Michael Jackson Trial'

[via press release from E!]

E! Announces Team of Legal Analysts That Will Join Host James Curtis in the E! News Special: 'Accused: The Michael Jackson Trial'

Premiering on Monday, February 28, at 9PM ET/PT

E! News Special Will Introduce Noted and Respected Legal Panel For E!'s Re-Enactment Series of The Michael Jackson Trial; Team Made Up of Legal Experts Rikki Klieman, Shawn Chapman Holley and Howard Weitzman

LOS ANGELES, Feb. 25 -- E! Networks today announced the panel of legal analysts who will join award-winning anchor James Curtis in the E! News Special "Accused: The Michael Jackson Trial," premiering on E! on Monday, February 28 at 9:00 PM. On the eve of the debut of E!'s reenactment series of The Michael Jackson Trial, E! will offer up a recap of the events surrounding Jackson's arrest and prosecution and a preview of E!'s exclusive coverage of events transpiring inside the courtroom.

The special will introduce to E! viewers the panel of highly respected legal experts, made up of commentators Rikki Klieman, Shawn Chapman Holley and Howard Weitzman, who will provide daily analysis throughout the re-enactment series of The Michael Jackson Trial.

"We're thrilled to have brought together some of the country's most influential legal authorities to provide commentary and analysis for our daily re-enactment series," said Jeff Shore, Senior Vice President, Production, E! Networks. "We trust that their depth of experience and keen understanding of the legal process will provide our viewers with an insider's perspective on this highly anticipated trial."

Rikki Klieman

A well-known legal analyst for NBC's "The Today Show," author and attorney Rikki Klieman served as an anchor at Court TV since 1994. Wife of Los Angeles Police Chief William Bratton, Klieman remains Of Counsel to the Boston, Massachusetts law firm of Klieman, Lyons, Schindler & Gross where she specializes in criminal trial and appellate practice as well as civil litigation. She received her J.D. from Boston University School of Law in 1975.

In 1983 she was named one of the five most outstanding women trial lawyers in the country by Time magazine. She has been featured on television shows including "Today Show," "Good Morning America," "Miller's Court" and the evening news and has been interviewed on numerous radio and television programs on various aspects of criminal and civil law and procedure including, "60 Minutes," "The McLaughlin Group," "20/20" and "Nightline."

Prior to her legal career, she was a theater major at Northwestern University and became a professional actress. Recently, she returned to her original acting career, appearing on NBC's "Las Vegas," "NYPD Blue," and "Dr. Vegas," as well as in films "A Civil Action" with John Travolta, and "Fifteen Minutes," with Robert DeNiro and Ed Burns. She also appeared as herself, a Court TV anchor, in films "The Cable Guy" and "An American Tragedy" (based on the O.J. Simpson case).

Ms. Klieman served on the Advisory Committee to the U.S. Supreme Court on the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, the Board of Directors of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Board of Visitors for Boston University School of Law.

Shawn Chapman Holley

Shawn Chapman Holley is the Managing Partner of the Los Angeles office of The Cochran Firm and the head of its national Criminal Defense Section. With more than sixty trials to her credit, Ms. Holley is the rare trial attorney who practices in the areas of both civil and criminal litigation. She was a highly visible member of the O.J. Simpson defense team and has worked with Mr. Cochran on a number of high-profile civil and criminal cases.

Ms. Holley most recently successfully defended Sara Jane Olson in her highly-publicized cases involving crimes committed by the Symbionese Liberation Army more than twenty-eight years ago. Her clients have included celebrated Black Panther leader Elmer "Geronimo" Pratt, Tupac Shakur, Snoop Dogg, Michael Jackson, actors Stan Shaw and Nia Long, and NBA basketball stars Larry Johnson and Byron Scott.

Ms. Holley has been the on-air legal analyst for KABC Eyewitness News in Los Angeles for the past year-and-a-half and has appeared on "The Today Show," "Good Morning America," "PrimeTime Live," Court TV, Fox News and CNN. She was a featured lawyer on Fox TV's "Power of Attorney" for two seasons.

Howard L. Weitzman

Internationally recognized criminal defense attorney Howard L. Weitzman has been a practicing attorney for over 36 years. Upon earning his law degree from the University of Southern California in 1965, he formed and managed his own law firm for 22 years. In 1986, he became a managing partner at the law firm of Wyman Bautzer, and then in 1991 joined Katten Muchin Zavis & Weitzman as a managing partner and Chairman of the Executive Committee.

In 2001, Howard teamed up with Proskauer Rose as a partner in the Litigation and Dispute Resolution Department, and is a resident of the Los Angeles office. His practice includes litigation in civil, criminal, antitrust and regulatory forums. He has been the lead trial attorney in over 200 jury trials, and has represented in excess of 1,000 individuals and companies on matters ranging from family law and estate issues to personal counseling on contract and business strategies.

In 1979 and 1984, Weitzman received the Jerry Giesler Memorial Award as the outstanding trial lawyer in Los Angeles County. He has been profiled in a number of publications and has been recognized as one of the most influential attorneys in the nation, as well as one of the top fifteen lawyers in the country by the National Law Journal.

In addition to providing a comprehensive recap of events surrounding the Michael Jackson case, the special will also preview E!'s exclusive coverage of events transpiring inside the courtroom through the use of verbatim reenactments of the actual court transcripts.

"E! News: The Michael Jackson Trial" is scheduled to air Monday through Friday nightly at 7:30 and 9:00 PM ET/PT on E! Entertainment Television, with a one-hour weekend wrap-up show premiering every Saturday at 10:00 AM ET/PT. Internationally, the series will air on the E! International Network (excluding E! UK) which can be seen in over 50 countries worldwide including France, Italy, Germany, Australia and South Africa. E! News will also feature daily in-depth coverage of the trial. The programs will air exclusively in the UK on Sky News and Sky One every weekday. Additionally, Sky News is available in over 120 countries worldwide.

Based in Los Angeles, E! Networks is the world's largest producer and distributor of entertainment news and lifestyle-related programming. The company operates E! Entertainment Television, the 24-hour network with programming dedicated to the world of entertainment; The Style Network, where life gets a new look, and E! Online, located at Eonline.com. E! is currently available to 86 million cable and direct broadcast satellite subscribers in the U.S. The Style Network currently counts 40 million subscribers.

BSkyB is the operator of the leading multichannel television platform in the UK and Ireland. Almost 19 million viewers in 7.4 million households enjoy an unprecedented choice of movies, news, entertainment and sports channels and interactive services on Sky digital, the UK and Ireland's first and most popular digital television platform. BSkyB's channels are available in a further 7 million cable and digital terrestrial households. Sky News is the UK's market-leader in 24 hour news and is available to audiences in 120 countries throughout the world. Sky One is the UK's leading non-terrestrial entertainment channel, providing a mixture of the best of US programming and original UK commissions.

SOURCE E! Networks

  [february 2005]  

· 20/20 (ABC)

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