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Murder One.jpeg

Murder One is an ABC network legal drama series that aired from September 19, 1995 to May 29, 1997, lasting for 2 seasons and 41 episodes.

It was created by Steven Bochco, Charles H. Eglee and Channing Gibson, and produced by 20th Century Fox Television & Steven Bochco Productions.


In its first season, the series starred Daniel Benzali as defense attorney Theodore "Ted" Hoffman, a criminal litigator and the principal of his own firm, Hoffman and Associates.

Backed by a cadre of young associates, Hoffman was a gruff, masterful criminal lawyer who zealously represented his clients in high-profile cases. Patricia Clarkson played his wife, Annie.

The first season of the series revolved around a single high-profile criminal case. Stanley Tucci played Richard Cross, a charming but morally ambiguous philanthropist and the first man arrested for the murder of Jessica Costello. Bobbie Phillips played Julie Costello, the murder victim's sister and the girlfriend of Richard Cross.

For the duration of season one, Hoffman defended Neil Avedon (Jason Gedrick), a young Hollywood star who was accused of the murder of 15-year-old Jessica Costello. During the first part of the season, Hoffman's associates also handled smaller cases which were usually wrapped up within one episode.

While there were many plot twists and misdirections, fundamentally the entire season consisted of one defense case for Hoffman & Associates.

In the second season, Benzali was replaced by Anthony LaPaglia as Jimmy Wyler, a former assistant district attorney who took over Hoffman's firm. The second season also featured this type of seriality, to a limited extent: three unrelated trials, over 18 episodes.


Season 1

  • Theodore Hoffman – Daniel Benzali
  • Annie Hoffman – Patricia Clarkson
  • Justine Appleton – Mary McCormack
  • Neil Avedon – Jason Gedrick
  • Richard Cross – Stanley Tucci
  • Francesca Cross – Donna Murphy
  • Deputy District Attorney Miriam Grasso – Barbara Bosson
  • Chris Docknovich – Michael Hayden
  • Lisa Gillsepie – Grace Phillips
  • Arnold Spivak – J. C. MacKenzie
  • Julie Costello – Bobbie Phillips
  • Judge Beth Bornstein – Linda Carlson
  • Dr. Graham Lester – Stanley Kamel
  • District Attorney Roger Garfield – Gregory Itzin
  • David Blalock – Kevin Tighe
  • Ray Velacek – Joe Spano
  • Louis Hines – John Fleck
  • Detective Arthur Polson – Dylan Baker
  • Gary Blondo – John Pleshette
  • Lila – Vanessa A. Williams
  • Connie Dahlgren – Nancy Lee Grahn
  • Sidney Schneider – Adam Scott

Season 2

  • Jimmy Wyler – Anthony LaPaglia
  • Justine Appleton – Mary McCormack
  • Deputy District Attorney Miriam Grasso – Barbara Bosson
  • Chris Docknovich – Michael Hayden
  • Arnold Spivak – J. C. MacKenzie
  • Judge Beth Bornstein – Linda Carlson
  • District Attorney Roger Garfield – Gregory Itzin
  • Louis Hines – John Fleck
  • Aaron Mosley – D. B. Woodside
  • Det. Vince Biggio – Clayton Rohner
  • Frank Szymanski – Jack Kehler
  • Clifford Banks – Pruitt Taylor Vince
  • Frances Wyler – Eileen Heckart
  • Malcolm Dietrich – Ralph Waite
  • Gwen – Pauley Perrette

Broadcast History

ABC aired all of the episodes of "Murder One" that were filmed and the plot was prematurely wrapped up in the final episode.

ABC ordered the series' final six episodes to air as a three-night miniseries in the spring of 1997. As the hopes for a series renewal diminished, the three-night miniseries was rescheduled for the less-viewed Memorial Day weekend. It was dropped at the end of the 1996–97 season.