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Frogmen Pic

Rare cast picture from the project.

In early 1994, Warner Bros. Television commissioned a 91-minute pilot movie intended for the NBC network for an action series entitled The Frogmen. The story, which was described as being akin to "The A-Team", concerned a crack team of Navy SEALS who would be sent out on special government assignments from their headquarters in Miami, with a dive shop as a front. O.J. Simpson, the pro football player turned actor was cast as the team's leader, John "Bullfrog" Burke.

Despite the pilot being completed, plans for airing it were halted indefinitely in June of that year when Simpson was arrested for allegedly murdering his ex-wife Nicole, and restaurant waiter Ronald Goldman, who were visciously stabbed to death in the front of Nicole's home.

Interest in the Footage

As preparations for Simpson's trial began, there was a sense of interest in utilizing the footage as evidence. Simpson's character was portrayed as an expert with knives. He had undergone some knife fighting training in preparation for the role and in one scene, his character holds a knife to his daughter's throat, mistaking her for an intruder. Also, during a break in filming, co-star Todd Allen accompanied Simpson to the Ross Cutlery store, where Simpson would later supposedly revisit and purchase a knife that the prosecution believes could have been the murder weapon which was never recovered.

Los Angeles Police had come across a 25-minute sales tape for the program in Simpsons' residence while searching it, where they viewed it, for which they were criticized. However, the tape in question was reportedly free of any such scenes that could be interpreted as incriminating. Although the prosecution managed to successfully argue for the right to enter the tape into evidence, it was never used. Simpson was eventually acquitted.

Eventually, the rights for the pilot reverted back to Warner Bros., where it was then stored in a vault, never to be seen again out of respect for Nicole and Ronald's families. In 2000, a source in possession of the 25-minute presentation tape allowed reporter Brian Lowry to view it as research for an article he was writing for the Los Angeles Times, but would not allow it out of their possession. The footage remains unseen to this day. [1]

References

  1. In-depth article on the footage. Retrieved 9/1/2014

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