Though HBO opted not to move forward with his sexual drama series Open, the Ryan Murphy empire is continuing to expand regardless. FX has given a straight-to-series order for a companion series to Murphy’s wildly popular horror anthology American Horror Story. This new show, American Crime Story, will apply the anthology conceit to some of the biggest true crime stories in history, and the first season will start things off with a bang. The 10-episode first season of ACS will be called American Crime Story: The People Vs. O.J. Simpson. More after the jump.
FX announced today that American Crime Story: The People vs O.J. Simpson will be based on the book The Run of His Life: The People V. O.J. Simpson by Jeffrey Toobin. As with his previous shows, Murphy will direct, but the script for the first two episodes were written by Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (The People Vs. Larry Flynt) instead of by Murphy and his producing/writing partner Brad Falchuk. It’s unclear if Murphy is directing all 10 hours or just the first two.
This first season will tell the story of the O.J. Simpson trial from the point of view of the lawyers, exploring “the chaotic behind-the-scenes dealings and maneuvering on both sides of the court, and how a combination of prosecution confidence, defense wiliness, and the LAPD’s history with the city’s black community gave a journey what it needed: reasonable doubt.”
Murphy will executive produce the series with his AHS co-creator Brad Falchuk as well as Nina Jacobson, Brad Simpson, Dante Di Loreto, and Alexander & Kraraszewski, with filming set to begin early next year in Los Angeles. This move comes as Murphy’s Fox’s series Glee is entering its final season, so one imagines he’ll be able to juggle acting as showrunner on American Crime Story along with American Horror Story. Moreover, FX has to be happy that they now have another addition to the AHS brand to air. It’ll certainly be interesting to see which true crime stories American Crime Story tackles in the future, but the O.J. Simpson trial will no doubt make for an ambitious first season.
The new season of AHS, American Horror Story: Freak Show, debuts this Wednesday on FX.