Nineteen years ago today, O.J. Simpson led the LAPD on the most famous police chase in history after failing to turn himself in on double-murder charges in the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. The low-speed pursuit commanded the American consciousness (roughly 95 million Americans watched), NBC cut away from Game 5 of the NBA Finals between the Rockets and Knicks and the Ford Bronco suffered the worst brand tarnishing since Heineken in Blue Velvet.
Yet as unforgettable a day as it was, here are six footnotes you might not recall about an otherwise indelible episode in American history.
1. In The Klansman, Simpson's character hijacks a white Bronco to escape from police, foreshadowing the IRL events of 20 years later.
Life imitates art (begins around the 1:06:30 mark).
2. Domino's Pizza reported "record sales" during the chase.
The chain made the claim in a 1996 press release.
3. David Hasselhoff attempted to reignite his pop singing career in the U.S. with a pay-per-view special ... which failed (at least in part) due to the chase overshadowing it.
Talk about bad timing.
4. Peter Jennings was pranked on the air during ABC's live coverage.
A caller who said he was sitting across the street from Simpson's house turned out to be a Howard Stern fan who signed off with a lusty "And Baba Booey to y'all!"
5. Simpson attempted to sell the car at a used-car lot as part of a pay-per-view candid-camera prank show in 2006.
The stunt drew criticism from Ron Goldman's father, who called the stunt "morally reprehensible."
6. Today you can rent the Bronco for birthday parties, corporate events, bar mitzvahs, etc.