Hayden Panettiere’s Lifetime movie debut won’t see the light of day if attorneys for convicted killer Amanda Knox get their way.
Lawyers for Washington-born exchange student sentenced to 26 years in an Italian prison for the 2007 murder of her roommate have formally demanded that Lifetime scrap a planned film about Knox’s 11-month trial. Knox — or “Foxy Knoxy” as she was dubbed by the British press — her ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito, and African immigrant Rudy Guede were convicted in 2009 of sexually assaulting and murdering English college student Meredith Kercher. Knox and Sollecito were sentenced to 26 and 25 years, respectively. Both deny wrongdoing and are in the process of appealing their sentences. Knox, 23, hopes a review of crucial forensic evidence will help her overturn her conviction.
On Saturday, Knox’s lawyers Carlo Dalla Vedova and Luca Maori presented Lifetime with a legal warning in a bid sequester the film. Vedova and Maori want the film cancelled and a trailer removed from Lifetime’s website. A preview posted to Lifetime’s website shows scenes from the murder — including one split-second shot showing an actress playing Kercher being attacked by two men.
Lifetime producers worked from media reports and a 400-page report penned by a judge in the case. The network did not, however, consult the families of the convicted or the slain — all of whom have spoken out against the production. John Kercher, Meredith’s dad, told the BBC that he found th scenes reenacting his daughter’s murder “graphic, horrific, and distressing.”
Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy, is set to premiere on The Lifetime Network on Feb. 21.