Petrocelli also suggested that a second person - he mentioned Al Cowlings, O.J.'s daughter Arnelle, or his secretary, Cathy Randa - helped O.J. clean up after the stabbings. ``I have no evidence that says it's any of those people,'' Petrocelli said. ``I only know it had to be someone extremely loyal to O.J. Simpson.''
He said O.J. had always been jealous of Allen, who continued playing pro ball after O.J.'s career was cut short and who was used by Nicole to hammer O.J. ``At the very end, Simpson and Nicole were at war with each other, and I think Marcus Allen was the way she struck back at him. . . . Every time I spoke to witnesses close to Simpson, it always came back to Marcus Allen.'' He added that Allen, who'll work for CBS next season, denies a relationship with Nicole because he ``needs to protect . . . his life, his family, his reputation . . . his income-generating ability, and he will go to the grave lying about this.''
An Allen spokesman yesterday repeated the denial and said Petrocelli was ``playing fast and loose with the truth.'' Calls to Cowlings and Arnelle weren't immediately returned. Randa couldn't be reached. O.J.'s lawyer didn't immediately return a call.
LOCALLY CONNECTED * Robert Palumbo won the sixth annual $5,000 ``Set in Philadelphia'' screenwriting competition at last night's opening of the Philadelphia Festival of World Cinema. His Chiaroscuro is about 19th-century Philadelphia artist Thomas Eakins. The script gets a first pro reading May 10 at downtown's Mike Lemon Casting. Hugh Sterbakov won the festival's award to a promising writer under 30 for his screenplay West Philly, about racial tensions in friendships.
Hollywood musicman Marvin Hamlisch will perform at Temple's alumni awards dinner, 7 p.m. May 9. It'll be the first time the annual black-tier will be at the Apollo.
Bridget Hoffman, the Mother of All Monsters on TV's Hercules, and Anne Lockhart, Lt. Sheba on the series Battlestar Galactica, will be at the Sci-Fi Collectibles & Autograph Show at Cherry Hill's Holiday Inn on Route 70 Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. Admission: $8.
TVers Trudy Haynes, Gerald Kolpan and Clark DeLeon will read the poetry of Sylvia Plath, Ted Hughes, Anne Sexton and Robert Lowell, 7 p.m. Monday at Rittenhouse Square's Barnes & Noble. It's in connection with the Wilma Theater's production of Amy Freed's play The Psychic Life of Savages - inspired by the four poets' lives - playing for a month starting Wednesday.
Yvonne Kaye, whose chat show has aired on WWDB-FM (96.5) Saturday nights for 16 years, will have her 1991 self-help book Credit, Cash and Co-Dependency reissued in June by Iowa's Islewest Publishing with pix and updated text. She'll also get the ``Humanitarian of the Year'' award from the Willow Grove Chamber of Commerce at its Willow Ball on May 9 at the Huntingdon Valley Country Club.
Washington insider and TV talking head David Gergen will talk ``Substance and Spin'' at a World Affairs Council lunch, noon Tuesday at Haddonfield's Tavistock Country Club. Info: 215-731-1100.
Tony Clark's owner Wes Wyatt has told associates that he wants out of the eatery biz after two years, and at least two restaurateurs have made offers to buy it. The staff was told last week that the future of the eatery at Broad and Sansom Streets was unclear. Says exec chef Tony Clark: ``I'm only a chef.'' GM Stewart Mahan said ``exciting things'' would happen.
SKIN DEEP * People mag's ninth annual ``The 50 Most Beautiful People in the World'' issue is distinguished not by its usual suspects but its surprises, like: Brit P.M. Tony Blair, morning TV newsie Ann Curry, L.A. top cop Bernard Parks, Seattle Mariners baseballer Alex Rodriguez, environmentalist Danny Seo, country singer Bryan White, opera singer Andrea Bocelli, who has been blind since childhood, and model and skier Chris Waddell, who was paralyzed in a skiing accident eight years ago. Oldest picks - actresses Gloria Stuart, 87, and Anne Bancroft, 66. Youngest - Prince William, 15, and tennis star Anna Kournikova, 16.
Anna Nicole Smith, who recently lost 100 pounds, continued to give her career mouth-to-mouth by winning the Miss Republic of Cuervo Gold title Tuesday on an isle off Tortola, British Virgin Islands. Smith, who'll make appearances on behalf of the tequila outfit, wore a tight black dress with appliqued hands right where you think they'd be. ``I thought,'' she said, ``if that wouldn't do it, nothing would.''
TV OR NOT TV * Steve Wilkos, the Chicago cop who helps break up fights on Jerry Springer's show, says nobody ever gets hurt. ``Somebody gets a bruise or a scratch, to me that's not getting hurt,'' says Wilkos, 34, who's worked the show four years. ``Somebody broke their nose or got teeth knocked out or broke a finger, a hand, a wrist, an arm - that's getting hurt.'' He likes Springer. ``A lot of people that are on TV or in the movies, they think they're something special,'' says Wilkos. ``The nice thing about Jerry, he doesn't.'' Well . . . he isn't!
Katie Couric is moving herself and her two girls out of the Manhattan digs she shared with husband, Jay Monahan, until his January death. Just shelled out $3.6 mil for a 12-room apartment on Park Avenue near 92d Street. Has four bedrooms, three maids' rooms and a library.
Steve Kroft of 60 Minutes and wife, Jennet Conant of Vanity Fair mag, have coughed up $2 mil for a five-acre beach spread in Long Island's Southampton. Traded up from a nearby house they bought for $450,000 a few years ago and just sold for thrice that.
THE MOVIE SET * Steven Spielberg, whose World War II movie Saving Private Ryan is due for a July 24 opening, has tapped Arthur Golden's best-seller Memoirs of a Geisha as his next project. No stars or even a script yet, but the director hopes to begin shooting - maybe in Japan - by October. It's a fictional story set over 60 years about a girl sold into slavery in 1929 who becomes a famed geisha. ``I believe in love at first sight,'' said Spielberg, ``which is probably why I fell so hard for [the] novel.''
Helena Bonham Carter thought her Oscar nomination for best actress in The Wings of the Dove was enough to bypass a screen test for the starring role in The Fight Club. Director David Fincher (The Game, Seven) disagreed, declared her attitude ``too much,'' and told her she need no longer apply.