The actor is currently living in the area of Los Angeles where Simpson's estranged wife, Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ron Goldman were murdered in June 1994.

As a result of playing the American footballer in the drama American Crime Story: The People v. O. J. Simpson, which depicts the investigation and trial leading to Simpson's acquittal of the murders in 1995, Gooding Jr. says he keeps being accosted by those who knew the Naked Gun star, or had a connection to the case, including Goldman's ex-girlfriend.

"I live in that area where the crimes took place," he told U.S. late night host James Corden. "It's funny because wherever I went, and especially now when people know that I'm playing him, everybody has some connective tissue story. Just really from subtle stuff to one day I ran into Ron Goldman's ex-girlfriend. And everybody, everybody has a real emotional connection to the case."

Goldman's family have criticised the programme for its focus on Simpson and the trial rather than the victims.

In an interview with America's E! News Gooding Jr. expressed sympathy for the victims' families, saying, "I just hope that they find some peace because I can't imagine what they're going through."

The O.j. Simpson case and trial is still one of the most controversial episodes in American legal history. Simpson's acquittal came after bitter trial proceedings which played out live in front of an estimated 100 million viewers on U.S. TV.

Despite the not guilty verdict in the criminal trial, in 1997 Simpson was found liable for the wrongful deaths of Goldman and Brown Simpson in a civil court and ordered to pay $33.5 million (£23.4 million) in compensation to their families.

In his interview on The Late Late Show with James Corden, the actor told the host how the ambiguity over Simpson's guilt led to him to play his character as both and then let director Ryan Murphy decide, saying, "We would do certain takes guilty, certain takes innocent and then when he (Murphy) got in the editing room he had the plethora of emotions to play with."

Simpson is currently in jail after being convicted on charges of robbery and kidnapping relating to an incident in Las Vegas, Nevada in 2007.

The final episode of The People v. O.j. Simpson airs in the U.S. on 5 April (16).