Rob Lowe: 'I was shocked' at Casey Anthony verdict

NEED TO KNOW
  • Lowe: 'Sometimes in Hollywood, there is not a happy ending. This is one of those times'
  • Lowe stars as prosecutor Jeff Ashton in the Lifetime movie, 'Prosecuting Casey Anthony'
Actor Rob Lowe plays prosecutor Jeff Ashton in the new Lifetime movie, "Prosecuting Casey Anthony."

Actor Rob Lowe says that while filming his latest movie, "Prosecuting Casey Anthony," about the young Florida mother who was put on trial for the murder of her 2-year-old daughter, he became convinced that she had killed little Caylee.

In an interview with Showbiz Tonight's A.J. Hammer, Lowe, who stars as prosecutor Jeff Ashton in the Lifetime movie, says that he, along with most of the country, couldn't believe when Anthony was acquitted during her 2011 trial.

"I was shocked by the verdict," reveals Lowe, who says he had followed the news coverage religiously and couldn't believe what he was seeing.

The Golden Globe and Emmy-nominee says that playing Ashton, who was "12 for 12 in death penalty cases," and presented what he thought was overwhelming evidence of the crime, convinced him that the verdict had been a mistake: "How does that happen and how do you ever reconcile yourself?"

In July 2011, a jury acquitted Anthony of all the charges related to her child's death, but convicted her on four counts of lying to law enforcement. She was sentenced to four years. With credit for time served before and during her trial, she was released from jail on July 17, 2011.

When asked about what he learned while shooting the movie, Lowe, who also spent a considerable amount of time with Ashton himself, says he realized how out of control the trial had gotten: "This was a circus, and I think Jeff is a gentleman of court. He comes from an era where certain things are done and certain things are not done in court."

Lowe continued, saying that Anthony's primary defense lawyer was the exact opposite: "I think Jose Baez is the type of lawyer who just goes for it and the jury believed Jose."

He also says that the trial, the first major one in the age of Twitter and Facebook, might have been impacted by social media. "I think that had a lot to do with the outcome. I think the country communicated immediately in a way that was not being communicated in the courtroom and the two never, ever intersected."

When asked what he would like Anthony to take away from this film, Lowe says that while he's "never been able to understand her," he hopes that she takes away this lesson: "We all have consequences to our actions, although there are certain people who like to pretend otherwise. "

"There's a little girl who we must not forget who is at the heart of this, who is lost," continued Lowe. "Sometimes in Hollywood, there is not a happy ending. This is one of those times."

"Prosecuting Casey Anthony" premieres Saturday, January 19 on Lifetime.

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