'Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy' Lifetime movie faces legal threats
The Lifetime film "Amanda Knox: Murder on Trial in Italy," based off the story of American student Amanda Knox, who is serving a 26-year jail term sentence in connection with the murder of her roommate, is facing legal hurtles according to reports.
Lawyers for Knox sent a formal complaint on February 3 that demanded Lifetime refrain from airing a planned film about the trial.
According to The Associated Press, Attornies Carlo Dalla Vedova and Luca Maori said Saturday they had sent letters to Lifetime warning they would go to U.S. court to try to sequester the film if it isn't canceled and a trailer removed from Lifetime's website. The network has until February 10 to respond to the complaint. The film, which features "Heroes" star Hayden Panettiere as Knox, is set to air on February 21.
"It's a very controversial topic, and I don't think people are going to have a problem with it," Panettiere said in an earlier interview with the wire service. "It's pretty fact driven, and it ends right when she gets convicted and goes to jail."
In 2009, Knox and ex-boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito were convicted of sexually assaulting and murdering her roommate, Meredith Kercher, in the apartment the two girls shared in the Italian city of Perugia.
Knox was sentenced to 26 years in prison; Sollecito 25 years, however, both deny wrongdoing and their appeals trial is under way.
ABC News reports that Knox's stepfather said she saw part of the film on television and was shocked. She told him she was hyperventilating and she felt she was going to throw up.
"We, quite some time back, asked Hayden to visit Amanda, but they never got back to us after several conversations," he told the network. "This thing with Lifetime, I think, is them doing nothing more than trying to make a buck. And it's disgusting. It's not appropriate to profit off other people's pain."
Lifetime is owned in part by Disney, the parent company of OnTheRedCarpet.com.