Karen Mizoguchi and Kara Warner
May 17, 2018 12:00 PM

Boris Kodjoe is the latest actor to portray O.J. Simpson and he looks like a carbon copy of the convicted felon.

PEOPLE’s first look photo from Nicole & O.J. — an upcoming film about the tumultuous relationship between the former couple and the circumstances surrounding the 1994 murders of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman — shows the Code Black actor, 45, transformed into the former football star.

“Boris is the same height as O.J., very tall, a very athletic presence,” Stephen Small, one of the film’s producers, tells PEOPLE. “He transformed himself, changed his voice, he sounds pretty amazing.”

O.J. and Nicole LLC

Newcomer Charlotte Kirk plays Nicole Brown Simpson, a mother of two who was murdered at age 35.

“It was important to find actors that had the physical resemblance to the characters,” Small says of the casting process.

Though Nicole & O.J. is not the first fictionalized portrayal of what happened between the Simpsons, Small reveals the upcoming project, directed by Joshua Newton, will feature a different and possibly controversial perspective.

RELATED VIDEO: O.J. Simpson Offers ‘Hypothetical’ Account of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman’s Murders

“We’re telling the truth. It’s based on factual evidence: the real story from court documents, witness interviews, and trial testimony. We felt there was an injustice,” Small explains about what inspired the film and the three years of extensive research they put into it.

“A lot of people forget that the man was acquitted. He was found by 12 jurors that he did not commit the murders but if you talk to anyone, 10 out 10 people on the street are going to go, ‘He did it.’ We always thought something was off about it,” he says. “Our point of view is that Nicole came home at the wrong time. We filmed the murder as the trial portrayed it. It’s going to be controversial but the audience can decide for themselves what ultimately happened.”

The filmmakers did not shoot the pivotal scenes in Los Angeles, where the trial and the alleged murders took place, but in Bulgaria.

“The reason we shot in Bulgaria was because we reconstructed O.J.’s house on Rockingham and Nicole’s house on Bundy and Mezzaluna, those places don’t exist anymore,” Small says. “It’s the first time you’ll see O.J.’s house inside and out.

Nicole & O.J. is still in production and set for a March 2019 release, timed to the 25th anniversary of the headline-making trial.

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