ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL star Samuel West had opened up on the intense relationship he shares with his famous mother, Prunella Scales, best known for playing Sybil in Fawlty Towers.
Read more here Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed
ALL CREATURES GREAT AND SMALL star Samuel West had opened up on the intense relationship he shares with his famous mother, Prunella Scales, best known for playing Sybil in Fawlty Towers.
Read more here Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed
Dole Whip was created in 1984 by the Dole Food Company, best known for the original pineapple variety, but has since sold limited edition flavours including cherry, raspberry and lime.
Chester Zoo is also following in Disney’s footsteps selling the dessert at selected kiosks around the attraction. They include District Office on Islands and the Arara Kiosk by Spirit of the Jaguar.
Last week Chester Zoo hit headlines when staff welcomed a newborn orangutan.
The Sumatran orangutan is critically endangered and the baby was born to parents Emma and Puluh, both aged 34-years-old, last month.
Chester Zoo is the only one in mainland Britain to care for Sumatran orangutans.
READ MORE: You’re on your own, Emmanuel! Merkel breaks EU ranks with France
This post originally posted here Daily Express
Trump had staked nearly his entire campaign in 2016 around a law-and-order image, and now groaned that the criminal justice reform that Kushner had persuaded him to support made him look weak and—even worse—hadn’t earned him any goodwill among Black voters.
“I’ve done all this stuff for the Blacks—it’s always Jared telling me to do this,” Trump said to one confidante on Father’s Day. “And they all f—— hate me, and none of them are going to vote for me.”
The weekend after Father’s Day, Trump canceled a trip to Bedminster at the last minute—after Kushner had already left for the New Jersey golf club—and instead scheduled a round of political meetings at the White House without him.
A month after the murder of Floyd, Trump was dumping on his son-in-law, and he was also abandoning the chance to improve his relationship with Black leaders and Black voters during a particularly tumultuous moment in U.S. race relations and the presidential campaign. The story of this month, from the murder of Floyd to Trump’s assertion that his outreach to Black voters wasn’t working, is one of missed opportunities and bungled messaging, even in the eyes of some of Trump’s closest advisers, who described their firsthand accounts with me during the past year. Many of the sources spoke to me on the condition of deep background, an agreement that meant I could share their stories without direct attribution.
Trump had long struggled with addressing the nation’s racial issues, and his senior staff hadn’t included a single Black staffer since he’d fired Omarosa Manigault Newman—a former contestant on his reality television show—at the end of 2017. In August 2018, White House counselor Kellyanne Conway had been asked on NBC’s Meet the Press to name the top Black official in the Trump White House and could only come up with his first name: Ja’Ron.
But Ja’Ron Smith was two pay grades below the top ranks. After Conway’s interview, Smith asked for a promotion to formalize his role as the West Wing’s senior-most Black official and close the $ 50,000 salary gap. Kushner agreed but then put him off for the next two years.
Still, Smith remained in the White House, where he continued to work on Kushner’s criminal justice issues and played a crucial role in outreach to Black community leaders. In June 2020, Smith was writing a proposal for Trump to make Juneteenth a federal holiday. But the outcry over Trump’s rally on the day that commemorated the end of slavery convinced Smith to shelve the plan.
Trump hadn’t thought to ask his seniormost Black official about holding a rally on Juneteenth.
Trump’s first test at addressing the country’s racial tensions came in the summer of 2017. On a Saturday in August, 32-year-old Heather Heyer was killed, and 19 others injured, when a 22-old neo-Nazi drove his souped-up 2010 Dodge Challenger at about 30 miles per hour into a crowd in Charlottesville, Virginia. Heyer, who was white, and the others were protesting a white supremacist rally organized to oppose the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee, a Virginian who commanded the Confederate States Army during the Civil War. Trump had been golfing at his Bedminster club that morning. It had been about two hours since Heyer’s death, and Trump said he wanted to “put out a comment as to what’s going on in Charlottesville.”
“We condemn in the strongest possible terms this egregious display of hatred, bigotry, and violence on many sides—on many sides,” Trump said.
The White House tried in vain to focus cable networks and newspaper reporters on the first words of his statement instead of the final phrase—“on many sides”—that he’d ad-libbed and then repeated. But the obvious question they couldn’t answer was how the president could put any blame on the peaceful counter-protesters. His remarks seemed to justify the white supremacist violence, and Trump’s silence over the next 24 hours unnerved even those around him.
Back at Trump Tower in New York two days later, Trump had a news conference scheduled to discuss the nation’s infrastructure. Responding to questions about Charlottesville, he again blamed the counterprotesters.
“You had some very bad people in that group, but you also had people that were very fine people, on both sides,” Trump said.
The next day, Stephen Schwarzman, a longtime friend of Trump’s and chief executive of Blackstone Group, called the president and told him he had disbanded the White House Strategic and Policy Forum, a coalition of businesses chaired by Schwarzman that Trump had convened in February 2017 to advise him on economic issues. There weren’t enough executives left who would stand by Trump after his repeated failures to adequately address Charlottesville, Schwarzman said. Trump hung up and beat his friend to the punch by quickly tweeting that he was shutting down the panel.
Gary Cohn, the president’s top economic adviser—and a registered Democrat—was even more despondent. Raised Jewish on the East Side of Cleveland and a longtime New York resident, he stood next to Trump for the infrastructure news conference and grew increasingly alarmed and uncomfortable. Later, in a private meeting inside the Oval Office, Cohn unloaded on the president.
Cohn told Trump that his lack of clarity had been harmful to the country and that he’d put an incredible amount of pressure on people working in the White House. He told Trump that he might have to quit. No one backed Cohn up. Others in the room, including Pence, remained quiet.
Cohn returned to his office after the meeting broke up. Following a few minutes behind, Pence climbed the flight of stairs and appeared at the threshold of Cohn’s door.
“I’m proud of you,” Pence told him, safely out of earshot of the president.
An even bigger test for Trump came on May 26, 2020.
Ironically, in the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Trump’s team had started picking up positive signals from some Black leaders that they interpreted as potential softening on the incumbent president. The reduction in sentences for crack cocaine offenses, which had disproportionately and unfairly targeted Black offenders, reduced prison time by an average of six years for more than 2,000 prisoners. Of those, 91 percent were Black. Trump’s tax-cut bill included specific incentives for investments in poverty-stricken areas, known as opportunity zones. And those incentives were starting to work, according to a study from the Urban Institute. The administration had also made some inroads with historically Black colleges and universities when it canceled repayment of more than $ 300 million in federal relief loans and made permanent more than $ 250 million in annual funding.
Al Sharpton, the MSNBC host and civil rights activist, had been secretly calling him, which left the president with the impression that their staffs should work together. But the follow-up calls from Kushner’s team would go unanswered. Jesse Jackson, the Baptist minister and civil rights activist and one-time presidential candidate, had phoned a few times, too.
And more than 600 Black leaders joined a call as White House aides strategized over a push to codify the opportunity zone revitalization council that Trump had created by executive order.
But none of Kushner’s efforts to repair Trump’s image with the Black community would matter when the video of George Floyd’s murder began spreading online.
The morning after Memorial Day, senior White House staff gathered inside the West Wing for a prescheduled meeting about coronavirus. The death toll was approaching 100,000 in the United States, and the administration was scrambling to address a shortage of remdesivir, the antiviral used to treat Covid.
“We’re getting crushed on Covid,” said Alyssa Farah, the communications director.
Kushner, who seemed distracted and more aloof than usual in the meeting, interrupted her.
“I’m just going to stop you,” he said. “There is going to be one story that dominates absolutely everything for the foreseeable future. I’m already hearing from African American leaders about the death of George Floyd in Minnesota.”
Mark Meadows, the White House chief of staff, brushed it off.
“Nobody is going to care about that,” Meadows told him, according to officials in the room. Meadows disputed this version of events.
It took another day for Trump to watch the devastating video of Floyd’s murder aboard Air Force One, where he was returning to Washington from Florida. Trump sat in the president’s suite near the front of the plane. As Trump pressed “play” on the video, he was surrounded by Kushner, social media director and deputy White House chief of staff Dan Scavino, National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien and his media team. Trump contorted his face as he watched. He looked repulsed, then turned away. He handed the phone back to his aides without finishing.
“This is f—— terrible,” he exclaimed.
Trump said he wanted to speak immediately with Attorney General Bill Barr.
Trump was still shaken by the video the next afternoon when Barr arrived in the Oval Office on Thursday to brief the president about Floyd’s death, now three days later. Trump had tweeted the night before that he planned to expedite the probe from the Justice Department. The only effect of the tweet, however, was to politicize the issue and infuriate Barr, who hated the suggestion that his interest in the case was political or the idea that anybody was his boss. It was the opening fissure in the relationship between the prickly and stubborn septuagenarians.
“I know these f—— cops,” Trump said, recalling stories he’d heard growing up in Queens about savage police tactics. “They can get out of control sometimes. They can be rough.”
Trump’s assessment struck some in the room as surprisingly critical of police, and the president showed a level of empathy for Floyd behind closed doors that he would never fully reveal in public. Had he tried, it might have helped dial down the tension. But Trump didn’t see it as part of his job to show empathy, and he worried that such a display would signal weakness to his base.
Trump’s compassion quickly evaporated that night as he watched demonstrators torch a Minneapolis police station, and the protests spread to New York City; Denver; Phoenix; Columbus, Ohio; and Memphis, Tennessee.
“These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd,” he wrote on Twitter. “When the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!”
Later, Jackson said during one of his calls with Trump that the president said he was considering attending Floyd’s funeral. Jackson dissuaded him from that idea, telling the president that he had barely spoken to the family after Floyd died. Trump had reached out to the Floyd family four days after his death in a call that relatives later criticized as brief and one-sided. Jackson told Trump that it would have been disrespectful to then turn up to the memorial service.
Trump agreed—and it was the last time he and Jackson spoke for the rest of the year.
As Trump stewed amid negative coverage of the worsening pandemic, the deepening recession and now the racial justice protests, it was clear to campaign aides that they needed to get their candidate back on the road again, and soon.
In early June, Trump gathered a dozen of his top White House staffers and campaign aides—plus Mike Lindell, the MyPillow company founder and a vocal Trump supporter—to discuss the campaign’s television advertising strategy and a return to the campaign trail. Trump admired the success Lindell had selling pillows with infomercials, and Brad Parscale, his campaign manager, cornered Lindell before the meeting and urged him to attest to the brilliance of the advertising campaign.
Parscale’s prep work paid off. Trump turned to Lindell as soon as campaign staffers finished their presentation on the advertising strategy.
“Mike, are they doing a good job?” Trump asked.
“Yes, they’re doing great!” Lindell said. “I’ve talked to them before, and they’re talking to my team.”
The meeting then turned to a discussion about rallies, and Parscale presented 11 potential locations in six different states: Arizona, Florida, Michigan, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin. Nearly all of the sites were outdoors.
But Florida was off the table. Parscale suggested a drive-in-style rally in Central Florida, but Trump said Governor Ron DeSantis didn’t want a big crowd in his state during the pandemic. Parscale urged Trump to call DeSantis and tell him it was safe, but Trump refused.
No one liked the options in Arizona—the weather was too hot for an outdoor rally, and a spike in Covid cases precluded indoor venues—and Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin were all governed by Democrats. That left Tulsa, Oklahoma, which had landed on Parscale’s list after he asked Pence earlier that week about which state, governed by a Trump-friendly Republican, had the fewest Covid restrictions in the nation. The Mabee Center—the 11,300-seat arena Parscale proposed that day—had been the location of a Trump rally during the 2016 campaign. Trump was sold. (Parscale moved the venue to the 19,000-seat Bank of America Center after ticket requests shot through the roof, a result of both a prank from TikTok teens and a campaign decision to blast the announcement out to supporters across the country.)
Parscale recommended holding the Tulsa rally on June 19. No one on Parscale’s team flagged that day—or that combination of time and place—as potentially problematic. Had Parscale bothered to ask Katrina Pierson, the highest-ranking Black staffer on the campaign and a close friend of Parscale’s, she would have told him that June 19 was Juneteenth, a significant holiday for Black Americans that commemorated the end of slavery. She also would have said to him that Tulsa, as most Black Americans are well aware, had been home to one of the bloodiest outbreaks of racial violence in the nation’s history.
When staffers inside the Republican National Committee heard about the plans, they immediately pushed back.
“Don’t do this,” Ronna McDaniel, the RNC chairwoman, told Parscale. “The media is not going to give us the benefit of the doubt, especially now.”
There still was time to change the date or reconsider plans entirely. The campaign hadn’t yet signed contracts with vendors or the arena or even publicly announced the event. But Parscale dug in. Parscale’s only previous campaign had been Trump’s 2016 bid. Still, what the marketing and advertising veteran lacked in political experience, he filled in with overconfidence in what he viewed as his unlimited ability to win hearts and change minds.
On June 10, Trump had a single item on his public schedule: a 12:30 p.m. intelligence briefing. But, as was often the case with the Trump White House, that changed suddenly without any significant notice.
At 3:30 p.m., the White House summoned whichever reporters hadn’t wandered too far from their briefing room desks and quickly ushered them into the Cabinet Room, where Trump sat with Kushner and, as Trump described them, “friends of mine and members of the African American community.” That included Ben Carson, Trump’s housing secretary; Darrell Scott and Kareem Lanier, the founders of the Urban Revitalization Coalition; and Republican gadfly Raynard Jackson, who had sued the party over the trademark for “Black Republican Trailblazer Awards Luncheon,” which he believed that he, not the GOP, owned.
Trump said the meeting had been called to address law enforcement, education and healthcare issues. But for the next half-hour, Trump didn’t articulate any particular policy that would address any of those issues. The one thing Trump did talk about most extensively that afternoon: his return to rallies.
“We’re going to start our rallies back up now,” Trump informed the press. “The first one, we believe, will be probably—we’re just starting to call up—will be in Oklahoma.”
As reporters were ushered out of the room, one journalist asked Trump when he planned to be in Tulsa.
“It will be Friday,” Trump said. “Friday night. Next week.”
Democrats went on the warpath. Trump, they said, couldn’t be more insensitive to the world erupting all around him. Trump’s response was also impaired by his stunning disregard for history, particularly compared to most other modern presidents. Senior officials described his understanding of slavery, Jim Crow or the Black experience in general post-Civil War as vague to nonexistent. Now, the rally on Juneteenth threatened to exacerbate the racial fissures further.
The backlash shocked Trump. He started quizzing everyone around him.
“Do you know what it is?” Trump would ask.
Two days after announcing his rally, Trump turned to a Secret Service agent, who was Black, and asked him about Juneteenth.
“Yes,” the agent told Trump. “I know what it is. And it’s very offensive to me that you’re having this rally on Juneteenth.”
At 11:23 p.m. that night, Trump posted on Twitter that he wanted to change the date.
The following week, on the afternoon of June 17, my phone vibrated with a call from the White House. It was a few days before Trump’s Tulsa rally, and the president wanted to see me.
In our interview, one year ago this week, Trump tried to put a spin on the controversy. He told me that he had made Juneteenth a day to remember.
“Nobody had heard of it,” Trump told me.
He was surprised to find out that his administration had put out statements in each of his first three years in office commemorating Juneteenth.
“Oh really?” he said. “We put out a statement? The Trump White House put out a statement?”
Each statement, put out in his name, included a description of the holiday.
But such details were irrelevant to him. Instead, he insisted, “I did something good.”
“I made Juneteenth very famous,” he said.
Trump would arrive in Tulsa to a half-filled arena. Parscale had hightailed it out of the backstage area when he saw Trump and the White House entourage approaching—no one had told the president that the BOK Center wasn’t anywhere close to capacity.
Before rallies, White House aides usually inflated crowd sizes for Trump once they were told a capacity crowd was inside the building. On the way to Tulsa, no one knew how to break the disappointing news to Trump. It wasn’t until he was backstage and turned on the television that he realized the arena was two-thirds empty.
When Trump finally took the stage that night, he urged his latest audience to forget the past several months. From the rally stage in Tulsa, Trump sought a fresh start for his reelection bid.
“So we begin, Oklahoma,” the president would tell them. “We begin. We begin our campaign.”
But the truth was the campaign had begun long ago. What was actually beginning now, for Trump, was the end.
Adapted from ‘Frankly We Did Win This Election’: The Inside Story of How Donald Trump Lost by Michael C. Bender.
Author: Michael C. Bender
This post originally appeared on Politics, Policy, Political News Top Stories
Speaking to Express.co.uk, Fiona said of working with him: “We had great fun, we spent a lot of time laughing and always getting told off by producers because we talked too much or we ran over time, and did things we weren’t supposed to but it was great.
“He was often in my dressing room… he’d go on a gossip rant.
“We spent a lot of time in our dressing rooms and we had great fun.
“We had the same working class background and we knew our audience.”
Express.co.uk has contacted a representative for Eamonn for comment.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed
In 1980 she met Olympic Decathlon gold medallist and world record holder Bruce Jenner (now Caitlyn). At the time, he was a major international star, businessman and Playgirl cover model.
They married on January 5, 1981. Two sons followed, Brandon and Brody Jenner.
The marriage ended in 1986 but both sons became famous in their own right on shows like The Hills.
Before transitioning to Caitlyn, Bruce, of course, went on to marry his third wife Kris Jenner and became involved in the biggest reality TV show of all time. Brody also appeared regularly in seasons 8-11 of Keeping Up With The Kardashians alongside his step-sisters Khloe, Kim and Kourtney, and half-sisters Kylie and Kendall Jenner.
Brandon followed his mother’s footsteps into the music business with his wife Leah.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Entertainment Feed
Sir David Jason has graced our television screens for decades and become best known for his legendary role in Only Fools and Horses.
The actor, who has been a part of our lives for generations, played Derek ‘Del Boy’ Trotter.
The BBC sitcom was first broadcast in 1981 and follows wheeler-dealer Del Boy and the Trotter family on quests to make quick cash, and eventually become millionaires.
Born David John White in 1940, the television star has been the epitome of British comedy and drama and has rose in the ranks to become a national treasure.
And it appears some fans didn’t realise that the talent runs in his family, My London reports.
Over the years, his roles have included playing Granville in Open All Hours, Blanco in Porridge, Pop Larkin in The Darling Buds of May, and DI Frost in A Touch of Frost, and many more.
And it appears acting is a talent that runs through’s David’s family as he has a famous brother.
David’s older brother, Arthur White, features in a number of episodes of police crime drama A Touch of Frost playing the role of PC Ernie Trigg.
Have you spotted him?
Rumour has it, it was in fact Arthur that inspired David to pursue acting early in his career.
Back in 1996, Arthur starred in Goodnight Sweetheart which also stars Nicholas Lyndhurst, who played Rodney Trotter in Only Fools and Horses, as the lead role.
Arthur, who was born in London in 1933, has also featured in a number of popular television series.
He played Albert Fogerty in Heartbeat back in 2007 after landing a part in Holby City in 2006 as Sidney Bickton.
Other television appearances include Doctors, Family Affairs, London’s Burning, Grange Hill, and many more.
In 1991, Arthur starred alongside brother David when he appeared in two episodes of The Darling Buds of May as Uncle Pearce.
It’s a shame the two famous siblings never acted alongside each other in Only Fools.
Well, there’s always hopes for an on-screen reunion.
When Kate wore the dress in 2017, she accessorised with nude Prada heels and drop earrings by Simone Rocha. She wore her hair down in loose curls and opted for natural makeup.
Since then, Kate has recycled the Alexander McQueen dress to celebrate her mum Carole Middleton’s 64th birthday in 2019. The celebration was thought to be held at her sister Pippa and brother-in-law James Matthews’ Chelsea home.
At the time, Kate added the same earrings but opted for matching red heels.
This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Life and Style Feed
Gogglebox favourites Jenny and Lee left viewers disappointed – and some concerned – with their latest Instagram video.
The best friends took to social media on Friday to explain that Jenny would soon be leaving the caravan after filming for the latest series of the popular show wrapped up.
Posting the video, shown above on their Instagram page, the duo wrote: “Have a great Friday everyone last week of filming for us of series 17.”
In the video, Lee seemed thrilled that Jenny would be leaving the caravan – although fans who know Lee’s sense of humour will gather it was very tongue in cheek.
“Happy Friday everybody,” Lee said.
To sign up for the Hull Live newsletter, click here.
“And sad Friday,” Jenny added.
“Why is it so sad?” Lee asked.
“It’s my last one,” Jenny said.
“Oh, it’s our last filming week this week so we are filming today,” Lee said.
“I’m going home soon,” Jenny continued.
And fans seemed disappointed to hear the news.
“Noooo that went too quick,” one said.
A second said: “Oh nooo, not the last one, what will I do with my Friday nights??”
But it left some speculating whether they would be back on Gogglebox at all after this series.
Watch: Gogglebox Jenny and Lee’s crisp sandwich revelation has intrigued fans
One said: “Will you be back??? Love you guys.”
Another said: “Have you left all together?”
But one replied: “It’s the last episode they are not leaving.”
To find out what Jenny and Lee have been up to on the latest series of Gogglebox, click here.
Kelly Jean Harmon is Harmon’s sister and has also followed in the family footsteps as an actor.
She has had roles in Bay City Blues, Battlestar Galactica and One Day at a Time.
Harmon’s other sister is the late Sharon Kristin Nelson who sadly passed away in 2018.
Before her death, she was an actor, author and painter who had appeared in films like Love and Kisses and Liar’s Moon.
She married teen idol Ricky Nelson back in 1963 and they had four children together.
Nelson was an American rock ‘n’ roll star who starred with his family in The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet.
After a successful music career, he died at the age of 45 in a plane crash when travelling for a concert.
NCIS season 18 airs on CBS on Tuesdays and FOX UK on Fridays.
This article originally appeared on Daily Express :: Celebrity News Feed
Howard Weitzman, an entertainment lawyer whose client list bristled with the names of some of the nation’s most famous, and infamous, celebrities — including Michael Jackson, Justin Bieber and, for two days, O.J. Simpson — died on Wednesday at his home in the Pacific Palisades section of Los Angeles. He was 81.
The cause was cancer, said Diana Baron, a spokeswoman for his wife, Margaret Weitzman.
In a career spanning five decades, Mr. Weitzman was the lead attorney in more than 300 civil and criminal jury trials, representing more than 1,000 people. His client list read like a Who’s Who of the last half-century’s superstars, among them Marlon Brando, Magic Johnson, Sugar Ray Leonard, Sean “Diddy” Combs, Justin Bieber, Ozzy Osbourne, Morgan Freeman and Britney Spears.
He also represented major motion picture studios as well as the powerhouse talent agencies William Morris, ICM and CAA, giving him a 360-degree view of the inner workings of the entertainment industry and a Rolodex of top-level connections that enhanced his reputation as a fixer. He was often ranked as one of the most influential lawyers in the country.
“A renowned trial lawyer and deal-maker, Howard skillfully handled some of the most famous cases in Hollywood,” his law firm, Kinsella Weitzman Iser Kump & Aldisert, said in a statement.
A master practitioner of the courthouse-steps news conference, Mr. Weitzman shot to national fame with his defense of John DeLorean, the flamboyant automobile executive who was accused of cocaine trafficking. In a 1984 trial during which the jury heard audiotapes of Mr. DeLorean making incriminating statements, Mr. Weitzman demolished the credibility of a key informant, argued that the F.B.I. had entrapped his client and won an acquittal.
With cable television in its infancy, Mr. Weitzman was one of the first lawyers to face round-the-clock television coverage of a big trial. He quickly turned it to his advantage, addressing the news media — and the court of public opinion — from the front of the courthouse.
“Part of my reasoning for talking to the media at all was to try and even the scales,” Mr. Weitzman told Southern California Super Lawyers magazine in a lengthy interview in 2008. “I learned then that on TV they tend to take three words from the 10 sentences you spoke. You learn pretty quickly to speak in sound bites if possible.”
Reporters found him helpful, congenial and entertaining, The Washington Post reported during the DeLorean trial. He gave them insights into his legal strategy, the paper said, as well as “a steady supply of his own humorous asides and highly quotable denunciations of the government and its informer.”
Although he was best known for his celebrity criminal cases, Mr. Weitzman also had extensive experience in business litigation and making deals. As aggressive as he could be in court, he came to prefer settling cases out of court.
Many of the lawsuits against his clients had a habit of disappearing. After a 14-year-old boy accused Mr. Jackson of sexually molesting him, Mr. Weitzman and Johnnie Cochran Jr., another superstar defense lawyer, helped short-circuit the boy’s civil suit by having Mr. Jackson pay him a sum believed to be in the millions of dollars.
When a young fan accused Justin Bieber of fathering her child in 2011, she demanded that he take a DNA test. Mr. Weitzman, representing Mr. Bieber, said that his client would submit to such a test — and at the same time threatened to countersue the woman, saying she was making a bogus claim. She dropped her suit.
He also represented Mr. Bieber when he was sued by his former bodyguard, who said Mr. Bieber had punched him in 2012. Just before the trial was to begin, Mr. Weitzman announced that the two had reached an agreement, and the suit was dropped.
Mr. Weitzman referred to his celebrity clients as “people of profile.” He said he believed they suffered in the criminal justice system because judges liked to make an example of them. He made this point in 2007 while representing Paris Hilton, who was caught driving without her license, which had been suspended after a drunk-driving conviction.
She was sentenced to 45 days in jail.
An outraged Mr. Weitzman told reporters that the sentence should have been much lower. “It’s clear she was selectively prosecuted because of who she is,” he said. “Shame on the system and shame on the city attorney for bringing this case.”
The city attorney disputed Mr. Weitzman’s interpretation, saying the judge was simply showing that no one was above the law.
Howard Lloyd Weitzman was born on Sept. 21, 1939, in Los Angeles, where his parents, Wilfred and Billie Weitzman, ran a grocery store. Working there on occasion, he developed an ability to converse with a wide variety of people.
He studied at Los Angeles City College before transferring to the University of Southern California, from which he graduated in 1962 with a degree in physical education. He loved baseball and hoped to make a career of it, but when that didn’t materialize, a friend suggested he try law school.
He took the LSAT but didn’t score high enough to be admitted to U.S.C.’s law school, according to Southern California Super Lawyers. At that point, the magazine said, his baseball coach, Rod Dedeaux, called the dean of the law school, who found a spot for Mr. Weitzman. Mr. Weitzman received his degree in 1965 and began to practice criminal law.
He left his law practice in 1995 to work as vice president of corporate operations for Universal Studios. He worked there until being ousted in a management reshuffle.
He said later that his experience at Universal helped him better evaluate whether to take a case to trial. “I was always more inclined to draw lines in the sand earlier in my career,” he said. “Now I try to avoid the actual trial and resolve it short of litigation.”
In addition to his wife, Mr. Weitzman is survived by two sons, Armen and Jed, and two grandchildren. His first marriage, to Stacey Cooper Furstman, ended in divorce.
For all his showmanship in the courtroom, Mr. Weitzman opted out of what the media called the trial of the century: the case against O.J. Simpson, who was accused of the 1994 murders of his former wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman.
After the sensational trial, during which much of the nation had ground to a halt waiting for the verdict — not guilty — Mr. Weitzman took the unusual step of saying that the jury had reached the wrong conclusion. “That is my opinion,” he told Super Lawyers, “based on time spent with him before the incident occurred, time spent with him after the murders occurred, and observing at arm’s length the facts brought out during the trial.”
He said he had no regrets about not participating in the spectacle. “Being in the eye of the storm,” he said, “is not something I needed.”
Katharine Q. Seelye