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Exclusive: Marion Jones's First Interview - Show Recap

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Exclusive: Marion Jones's First Interview - Show Recap

Jennifer Garner and Ellen Page at the Juno Premiere

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Original Air Date:

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Guests:

  • Marion Jones
  • Beth Holloway (Natalee Holloway's Mother)
  • Ellen Page
  • Jennifer Garner
  • Diablo Cody (Juno Screenwriter)

Marion Jones Information Prior to Interview:

Oprah described her as a "hero to millions" -- Marion Jones was once considered the best female athlete this country had ever seen, until October 5, 2007 when she confessed to the nation that she had lied. Jones pled guilty to making false statements to federal agents and was sentenced to 6 months in jail for using performance enhancing drugs. Jones was stripped of her 5 Olympic medals and her records were erased from the books - as if they never happened. Marion Jones appeared on the Oprah Show via satellite from Austin, Texas.

The Marion Jones Interview:

Marion Jones first thanked Oprah for giving her the opportunity to get her story out. After watching the video of her press conference on the Oprah Show for the first time, Jones stated, "I have no regrets for doing what I did on October 5" -- her concern now is how to make her poor choice into something that can help other people. When asked why she lied, Jones replied, "I made the choice at that time to protect myself, to protect my family, and I paid the consequences dearly." Though she is disappointed by the verdict, she is willing to accept the consequences for her actions.

Natalee Holloway Information Prior to Interview:

May 25, 2005 Natalee Holloway and her classmates from Mountain Brook High School in Birmingham, Alabama traveled to Aruba just 1 day after their graduation. On Sunday, May 29, Natalee was seen on camera playing at a blackjack table where she met Joran Van Der Sloot, a local. The teens were to meet up at a bar later where brothers Deepak and Satish Kalpoe entered the mix. Natalee was seen getting into the backseat of Deepak's car with Joran and Satish at 1am that morning -- and she was never seen again. The 3 men had been arrested multiple times as the primary suspects, but in November of 2007 the case was closed.

The Beth Holloway Interview:

After the 3 men were released for the final time, and the case was officially closed, Beth stated that, "No, it's not closed for us" and that she still believes that "at any given moment something unexpected could happen." As camera crews followed Beth through her home pictures and momentoes of Natalee are evident -- a hope chest containing Natalee's journal and dirty clothes from Aruba brought Beth to tears saying, "It's still hard." Beth feels that finding Natalee's body would mean putting an end to their nightmare and allow them to have closure.

John Ramsey and Matt Holloway:

Beth also discussed her brief relationship, but now friendship, with John Ramsey, father of JonBenet. Both have similar backgrounds which allow them to talk about their experiences, not having to avoid the topic of their children.

Natalee's brother, Matt, was just 16 when his sister disappeared. Matt was devastated by the event but found support from his group of friends.

Oprah expressed to the Holloway's something she learned from Dr. Phil, "you can hold on to the moment of death, or you can celebrate their life" -- Beth is choosing to celebrate with her book Loving Natalee.

The Big Buzz Movie of 2007 -- Juno:

Nominated for 4 Academy Awards, Juno is the surprise hit of 2007. The screenplay was written by first-timer Diablo Cody, and directed by Jason Reitman -- Juno is only his 2nd film! Oprah welcomed Ellen Page, who played Juno MacGuff in the film, to the show by expressing that Ellen's performance was one of the best of the year. Jennifer Garner and Diablo Cody joined Ellen on the stage, and Jennifer described how making the film "never seemed like work at all".

Screenwriter Diablo Cody:

Diablo Cody's start in Hollywood is as far from usual as you can get. Just 6 months before she sat down to write Juno she was working as a stripper in Minnesota. Oprah was impressed by Cody's witty dialogue and by the film feeling "so fresh". When asked how long it took her to write the screenplay, she stated only a couple of months joking, the movie only lasts 91 minutes, how long could it take?

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