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While Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk tend to veer towards near-nuclear secrecy regarding possible storyline details for upcoming American Horror Story seasons, they are opting to follow a vastly different route with American Crime Story. The duo are slated to have added yet another storyline for future fourth season; Variety has confirmed that along with two seasons currently in development, ACS will also cover the 1998 Monica Lewinsky scandal.
The seasons currently in development for FX concern Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath as well as the murder of beloved fashion designer and icon, Gianni Versace. The Versace season is based off the book Vulgar Favors, by Vanity Fair writer Maureen Orth.
Murphy and Falchuk plan to structure the Lewinsky storyline according to Jeffery Toobin’s book, A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President. Toobin is the author of The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson which was the basis for the incredibly popular first season of the show that went on to win an unprecedented ten Emmys.
While the second season of the show will reportedly focus on Hurricane Katrina and its after-effects, it will not air until 2018, followed by the Versace installment. FX CEO John Landgraf states,
‘They’re going to have a long hiatus, and then we’re going to get back on cycle…They’re going to air within about six months of each other.’
While the two seasons are filmed in the reverse order, Landgraf confirms that the Katrina will be the second season. Although rumored to play Donatella Versace, Murphy also confirmed at the TCAs earlier this week that Lady Gaga would not be playing the role, citing the pop superstar’s busy schedule and the major time commitment that ACS requires of its actors.
While audiences will have to wait to see the Lewinsky installment air, TV Guide reports that the project has been fast-tracked by producers, with actresses already in consideration for the lucrative roles of Linda Tripp and Monica Lewinsky, the focuses of Toobin’s novel.
Fans of the Murphy’s other wildly popular FX series, American Horror Story, will likely keep their fingers crossed to have Sarah Paulson cast as either Lewinsky, Tripp, or even possibly Hillary Clinton. Paulson, who played D.A. Marcia Clark in ACS’s first season, won her first Emmy for the role.
While the Lewinsky scandal is chock-full of provocative instances and the making of a potentially distasteful drama, Landgraf reassures audiences that the series will make sure to go beyond the media circus that surrounded the Clinton-Lewinsky and add depth and perspective to the controversy, saying,
‘We just have really high ambitions. It’s not a lurid true crime series. It’s taken time.’