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'SVU' to combine Trayvon Marton, Paula Deen storylines for upcoming episode

Posted By KATE STANTON, UPI.com   |   Aug. 22, 2013 at 8:26 PM
You'd think that recent controversies over Trayvon Martin's death and Paula Deen's disgrace would be complex enough to merit their own "ripped from the headlines" episodes of "Law & Order: SVU." But the show's executive producer says the long-running show will tackle both reality-based plots in a single upcoming episode.

“[Jeffrey] Tambor is a defense attorney representing a very high-profile celebrity woman chef who thought she was being pursued by a rapist and turned around it was a teenager. And she shot him,” Warren Leight told Entertainment Weekly on Wednesday. “There’s a lot of stop and frisk elements to that as well.”

Leight said that the direction of the episode actually divided people working on the show -- and he expects audiences to react similarly.

"When the script was published it became a litmus test for everybody here,” he said. “It was really interesting to see people read that script and have different interpretations about who did what and whether or not they deserved prison for it. It was fascinating.”

Buzzfeed published photos from the New York set of the episode, which show Cybill Shepard in character as the chef-shooter on the courthouse steps. Protesters carry photos of a black teenager wearing a hoodie, while some signs read "Guilty of WWB: Walking While Black."

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