Ryan Murphy

OJ Trial of the Century

Ryan Murphy, pioneer of the drastically-different-yet-eerily-similar Glee and American Horror Story (they’re both just so cheery), has announced his latest TV venture. And it’s something just as offbeat: a 10-episode TV adaptation of Jeffrey Toobin‘s “The Run of His Life: The People v. O.J. Simpson,” which will form the first season of his newly minted American Crime Story spin-off series. Which we all saw coming, obviously. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Murphy is recruiting some top courtroom talent for what’s being titled American Crime Story: The People v. O.J. Simpson. Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski (screenwriters of The People vs. Larry Flynt) are scripting the first two episodes, while Murphy will direct an unknown amount. The People v. O.J. Simpson, which started off as a Fox miniseries before being shipped over to FX, will focus on the trial — and the hodgepodge of media crazy that followed it — from the perspective of the lawyers. And as you can assume from its American Something Story moniker, the series is an anthology, with each successive season covering a different real-life crime. Presumably others as hotly-debated as the deaths of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Lyle Goldman.



FX’s American Horror Story looks to be dead-set on continuing to explore the creepiest creepy creep shows that America has to offer – and for their next season, the ostensible miniseries is hightailing it to a literal creep show. Over at /Film, they’ve got wind of a report that the fourth season of the series will move its setting (as they move setting and plot every incarnation) to a carnival. Send in the freaks (and the clowns, too, why not)! The outlet reports that writer and co-executive producer Douglas Petrie recently appeared on the Nerdist Writers Panel podcast, and despite first sticking to a tight-lipped stance, saying ”I can’t say anything” to questions about the show’s next season, he was waylaid when another guest mentioned that she had “heard” that the next season would take place at a carnival, to which Petrie replied, “Yes — that was the, it — it does not have a title.” Got you, Petrie!



Creepy, crawly, clever American Horror Story doesn’t have a problem garnering positive responses – Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk’s FX show has snapped up plenty of critical accolades (including thirty-four Emmy nominations over just two years in categories that run the gamut, from Outstanding Miniseries or Movie to Outstanding Main Title Design, winning four awards along the way) and posting ratings that are some of the network’s very best. It’s a bonafide hit that attracts both a dedicated fanbase and a wonderful string of actual talent. The show uses a nifty technique – call it a miniseries and change things up every season! – that guarantees that it will be at least different, if not totally reinvigorated, with every season. And yet, knowing all of that, I’ve never been able to be interested in American Horror Story in the slightest. Call it fallout from my disdain for Glee, chalk it up to a first season plotline that sounded absolutely tired (a haunted house story? Please), blame it on a natural aversion to people in rubber suits, but I jumped off the AHS ship before that thing even left the dock and I haven’t looked back. At least until the series’ third season, Coven, started rolling out some of the most incredible, horrifying, gorgeous, and mind-bending commercials ever to play on a television network (yes, we can pause for a minute so that you AHS fans can berate me for not feeling the same way about the previous two seasons’ commercials). […]


Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Today was basically Godzilla day on the Internet. All sorts of news regarding Legendary Pictures’ reboot of the big green guy’s film series broke, and some of it involves casting. THR broke the news that Joseph Gordon-Levitt was being looked at to star, but one of their writers, Borys Kit, was then quick to point out that his potential involvement in the film is long dead. Variety writer Justin Kroll then jumped in with the news that a few names that are still possibilities for the project are Henry Cavill, Scoot McNairy, and Caleb Landry Jones. All of this news comes with a special thanks to /Film, who compiled all the chatter into a tight little narrative. Even though things between Gordon-Levitt and Godzilla didn’t work out, don’t let that make you think that he’s going to go an entire week without being attached to a high profile project. In more Gordon-Levitt news, Deadline has word that the in-demand actor has just signed on to play a big role in Robert Rodriguez‘s Sin City sequel, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For. Apparently he’s going to be playing Johnny, a role that was meant to go to Johnny Depp at one point, and that is said to be a core character in the overlapping parts of the film’s story lines. This comes at the same time as news that Gordon-Levitt’s possible involvement in Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy isn’t going to end up happening, which is essential information if you happen to be exhaustively journaling all […]


Channel Guide - Large

From True Blood’s vampire-werewolf-fairy love triangles to The Walking Dead’s post-apocalyptic zombie assaults, right now, horror TV is diverse and it’s flourishing. But are any of the shows that filter their soap opera or action-adventure narratives through the horror lens genuinely scary? Two series, FX’s American Horror Story: Asylum and ABC’s 666 Park Avenue, premiered this fall with the express purpose of creeping the hell out of us every week. While both go about telling their chilling tales in ways that aren’t exactly groundbreaking, AHS: Asylum rises above most of its clichés—something that is primarily achieved through its relentless pacing and brutal imagery—where 666 Park Avenue is mired in flickering lights and seemingly portentous revelations. AHS: Asylum is the second installment in what creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuck are calling an anthology series. In terms of plot, then, it has nothing to do with the first season, which starred Dylan McDermott, Connie Britton, and Taissa Farmiga as a family living in the world’s most terrifying house. But fans of the first season needn’t worry because, when it comes to tone, the new story is just as unsettling and eerie and full of kink as its predecessor.


Witherspoon, Diaz, and Paltrow

I am fully aware that I after I reveal what I am about to reveal, I may very well have my Official Lady Card revoked – but I’m willing to accept that. Deadline Harriman reveals that Ryan Murphy has signed a “preemptive deal” in the seven-figures with Sony Pictures to make a film titled One Hit Wonders, a musical comedy that will center on three washed-up pop singers from the ’90s who join together to make a super group. The film has yet to be penned, but it will be written specifically for Gwyneth Paltrow, Reese Witherspoon, and Cameron Diaz, who will play the singers, along with Beyonce, Andy Samberg, and the rest of the Lonely Island boys in unspecified (but obviously musical) roles. Here comes the part where I throw myself onto the fire – I think this sounds eighteen shades of awful, almost unspeakably terrible. The real kicker for me is this tidbit – “The project came out of a dinner that Murphy had at the Soho House, with Paltrow, Diaz and Witherspoon. They wanted to do something fun together, and kicked around ideas until they settled on One Hit Wonders.” How I wish this had just stayed a funny jag between friends and not something that the rest of us have to be subjected to. While musical comedies are usually delightful, something about a pack of Hollywood A-list friends getting together just for the sake of getting together turns my tummy, and the attachment of Ryan Murphy, […]



We continue our journey through a month of frightening, bloody and violent films. For more, check out our 31 Days of Horror homepage. You gotta give Ryan Murphy credit for one thing, he sure as hell doesn’t believe in doing anything “normal,” and his triumphant return to adult television in the new FX series American Horror Story fits right in with the rest of his filmography, and the creepy child would agree. What can honestly be said about American Horror Story? Well first off, there’s no way to properly market this show. It’s honestly one of the most twisted things this reviewer has ever seen attempted by a mainstream television network. Here are a few adjectives and phrases I would use to describe the series: bloody, creepy, hyper-sexual, campy, crazy, ummm…okay…, WTF?!, where the?, huh?, holy shit, behind you! If any of that sounds appealing, then you are going to fucking love American Horror Story.



What is Movie News After Dark? This is a question that I am almost never asked, but I will answer it for you anyway. Movie News After Dark is FSR’s newest late-night secretion, a column dedicated to all of the news stories that slip past our daytime editorial staff and make it into my curiously chubby RSS ‘flagged’ box. It will (but is not guaranteed to) include relevant movie news, links to insightful commentary and other film-related shenanigans. I may also throw in a link to something TV-related here or there. It will also serve as my place of record for being both charming and sharp-witted, but most likely I will be neither of the two. I write this stuff late at night, what do you expect?



In Eat Pray Love, Liz Gilbert (Julia Roberts) eats, prays and loves, while gliding through some of the world’s most beautiful settings. Populated with gorgeous people, vivid scenic vistas and picturesque multicultural happenings, the film would make an ideal promotional spot for its primary locations of Rome, India and Bali. Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy’s adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert’s best selling, autobiographical self-help book (his directorial debut) gets the surface details right. Seen on a big enough screen, the pictures of Rome’s ornamental city streets, India’s sweat soaked ashrams and Bali’s lushly vegetated countryside provoke the sort of all-encompassing awe that in many respects defines the cinema. But when it comes to the narrative woven around the scenery, the movie starts flat, stays flat and never recovers. Cast wrong and structured lazily, Eat Pray Love lacks the strong dramatic pull needed to sustain a 133-minute production. Mired in a milquetoast aesthetic obsessed with trendy “healing” tropes (meditation, close-ups on delicious looking pasta, Javier Bardem etc.) the movie rarely deviates from the genre’s standard path.


Eat Pray Love

This week, Fat Guy Kevin Carr takes a gander at the demographically delineated movie selection this weekend. The ladies have Julia Roberts finding herself in Eat Pray Love. The dudes have Sly and the action family Stallone with the much anticipated The Expendables. And the fanboys fresh from Comic-Con have the high-concept slug-fest Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. Sorry to all the teenage girls out there. You’ll just have to go see Eclipse at the dollar theater this weekend.


I enjoy watching Glee. What’s it to you? You might as well if you’d give it a chance. And in an effort to get even more people to give it a chance, the shows producers are lining up some big talent for their upcoming second season. Including, but probably not limited to an appearance by Academy Award winner Javier Bardem. The No Country for Old Men star is expected to play a rock star who befriends Artie (Kevin McHale). “We’re going to rock the house,” Bardem told Entertainment Weekly, also noting that he spent a week watching the entire first season. “We’re going to do some heavy metal — Spanish heavy metal, which is the worst.” Spanish heavy metal for the kid in the wheelchair. Sounds just as interesting as the time Artie stood up and did a flashmob version of the Safety Dance (still my favorite moment from season one).



Yeah, yeah. I know it’s been a few weeks since I’ve mustered up the energy to review an episode of Glee. But something must be done. This week’s episode, unlike the two fabulous, glamorous and energetic episodes that preceded it, was more than just a small disappointment.



The world is full of surprises. This is not one of them. Fox announced today that even before its breakout hit Glee finishes its first season (yes, we’re still in the first season), they’ve picked up the option to have the show on in its third season.



Another day comes, and another opportunity for us to lay down some of the day’s hot news stories is upon is. But instead, we begin your Thursday with The B-Roll. Or as we like to say, “And now, for something completely different.”



It’s been ten years since Julia Roberts starred in a bona fide hit, both commercially and critically. What has she been up to since Erin Brockovich? Lots of supporting roles, a few misguided star vehicles, and three kids… but now it looks like Roberts is ready to get back into the game 100% with a film featuring her front and center as the sole lead character.



Sometimes, there is work to be done. And sometimes, the world needs a hero. That work is science, and I am the world’s hero. This week I watch the first season of Glee in one sitting, and live to tell the tale.

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published: 01.27.2015
published: 01.27.2015
published: 01.27.2015
published: 01.27.2015

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