This notorious case of pretty, vivacious Martha "Sunny" von Bulow pits husband Claus von Bulow against their children who are still convinced he attempted to murder his wife for her wealth.... See full summary »



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Episode credited cast:
Tracy Brenton ...
Catherine Callahan ...
Himself - Host
Harold Rice Fahringer ...
Himself (archive footage)
Stephen Famiglietti ...
Himself (archive footage)
Johnathan Friendly ...
Herself (archive footage)
Earl Mann ...
Gerhard C. Meier ...
Andrea Plunket ...
Herself (as Andrea Reynolds-Plunkett)
Thomas Puccio ...
Himself (as Tom Puccio)
Alan Rosenberg ...
Maria Schrallhammer ...
Herself (archive footage)
Ala von Auersperg ...
Herself (archive footage)


This notorious case of pretty, vivacious Martha "Sunny" von Bulow pits husband Claus von Bulow against their children who are still convinced he attempted to murder his wife for her wealth. Sunny slips into an irreversible coma in their Rhode Island home and survives almost 28 years in this vegetative state before finally passing away in December 2008 in a New York nursing home. Claus von Bulow was convicted of administering an insulin overdose to his American heiress and popular socialite wife. It was overturned on a second trial when the second trial citing her condition the result of prescription drugs overdose, not an insulin injection, found her husband not guilty. Written by

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Documentary | Crime




Release Date:

15 February 2008 (USA)  »

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User Reviews

A Famous Case That Still Fascinates Us
14 October 2009 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Unless most of Dominick Dunne's "Power and Privilege" cases that he featured on his program, this case wasn't so obvious. In most of them, it's pretty apparent that some rich person got away with some heinous crime. In this one, the story of Claus and "Sonny" von Bulow can be one that makes you shake your head because it's difficult to prove one way or the other.

To this day, almost 30 years to when Mrs. ("Sonny") von Bulow as found face down unconscious in her bathroom and was rushed to the hospital, people are divided on whether the she accidentally killed herself or that he murdered her. I think most people on the street would give you a "guilty" verdict but Dunne's did a good job of presenting both sides to the point where you have to make up your own mind. They didn't do it for you.

Even Dunne doesn't say outright was he thought, but he does mention Von Bulow wouldn't speak to him which tells you in which direction the Vanity Fair writer was when covering this case in the early 1980s.There are plenty of people, however, who speak on this TV episode of Mr. Bulow's behalf. There are sill many people who think he's innocent and was being framed.

Without going into details, a few early remarks on this TV show might entice you to watch it. Comments like, "This was the High-Society trial of the century," and "there were layers of secrecy involved." Also, "Like many of the super rich, they swept their troubles under their priceless Persian rugs" and "no one knows family secrets like the hired help." Yup, this was a case involving a super rich family living in a Newport, Rhode Island mansion and it had sex, drugs, intrigue and a "snoopy maid." It had key witness statements from the children in the family, along with a beautiful mistress. It had the victim lying in a coma for years and years. It had doctor's reports that were either accurate or bungled. It also had two trials: one where von Bulow was pronounced "guilty" and another in which he was said to be "innocent." There are lots of fascinating aspects to this case and Dunne's TV show here covers many of them.

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