Cuba Gooding Jr. Says He Plays O.J. Simpson With a "Blank Slate" of Mind
"It's dangerous when you either deitize or demonize a character you're portraying," the actor tells host James Corden during his visit to 'The Late Late Show.'
Everyone has an opinion on whether O.J. Simpson was guilty or innocent — but what does Cuba Gooding Jr., the actor who portrays him on American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson, think?
"I try to play him with a blank-slate frame of mind," the actor told James Corden during his visit to the Late Late Show Monday night.
The host praised the FX show — which is inching its way toward the anticipated final verdict when the finale airs April 5 — for not taking a stance on whether Simpson is guilty or not guilty, but he was still curious for the actor's take. "For you, playing that character, do you have to have an opinion on what's happening in your own head?" Corden asked.
"It's dangerous when you either deitizeor demonize a character you're portraying," said Gooding Jr. "I had an agreement with Ryan Murphy where could do some takes innocent, some takes guilty, so that way when [producer] Ryan got into the editing room, he has a plethora of emotions to play with."
Thanks to the success of the show, the actor, who lives in the Brentwood, Calif., area where the crimes took place, said he is approached everywhere he goes. "[O.J.] ate here," he said, before listing a number of other things. "Everyone has an emotional connection to [the story]."
Appearing alongside actors Don Cheadle and Jon Bernthal, Gooding Jr. also showed off his dance moves when he and Corden engaged in a break-dancing face-off after the actors discussed their collective dancing past.
See the video below.