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For fans of American Horror Story, it’s been a frustrating summer as they don’t know what the theme for the new season is going to be and they’ve been even more thrown off by only one of the promos correctly showing the theme for the new season.
While it’s a risky marketing strategy, it seems to be working as it’s giving people something to speculate about. Stephanie Gibbons, FX’s president of marketing and promotions, sat down with The Hollywood Reporter to talk about the upcoming season and why they decided to keep the theme of the season under wraps.
Gibbons said she’s never done anything like this while promoting a show, where she knows the theme and the plot but can’t reveal it to the public. She said part of the reason that everyone’s keeping the theme a secret is because of the connotations of the number six in the world of horror.
Gibbons specifically points to the trailer with Lady Gaga’s new song “Perfect Illusion” as fitting in perfectly with what they’re trying to pull off for the season. “Her song is very much up the alley so we played with that,” Gibbons said, adding that FX has put out a total of 24 teasers for the upcoming season.
As for in terms of promoting the new season, Gibbons said the promotion has been the same this season as they’ve done for past seasons. “We have to give it a lot of resources because we have to take it from the ground up. This one has as many resources, but that is awesome that you think it was more. We did want to ignite discussion and I can tell you we have always had an incredibly robust social community with AHS because it’s that kind of show, but this year, the fans did share and exchange and debate more and there was a lot more social activity.”
Meanwhile, Gibbons said that another reason people are more interested in figuring out what the new season is going to be about is because people are naturally curious. However, she did say she’s worried about the marketing twist not working and that it would backfire on them.
Back in August, Ryan Murphy, who created the show with Brad Falchuck, told The Hollywood Reporter he was tired of playing everything by the book and announcing a theme and announcing the cast a few weeks later. Instead, “We wanted to (create a) different experience for the fans this year. But that doesn’t mean we’ll do that for season seven or even season eight.”
Season six of American Horror Story premieres tonight (Wednesday, Sept. 14) at 10 p.m. on FX.