In under two weeks time, Ryan Murphy will make his second foray into the world of true crime with The Assassination Of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.
Versace Family In Direct Opposition
With the series that follows the critically acclaimed The People V O.J. Simpson on the horizon, the Versace family have shown that they are in a less than celebratory mood.
On Monday, they released a damning statement in response to the show. The Versace family let the audience know that the upcoming series was not made or even conceived with their input and that it may even be in direct opposition to the real-life facts of the case.
"The Versace family has neither authorized nor had any involvement whatsoever in the forthcoming TV series about the death of Mr. Gianni Versace," the family stated.
The thorniest issue seems to come from the source material, namely Maureen Orth's Vulgar Favors: Andrew Cunanan, Gianni Versace, and the Largest Failed Manhunt in U.S. History, which the family claims they did not authorize in the first place.
In fact, the Versace statement goes so far as to describe Murphy's show as "a work of fiction" as a result. Furthermore, they claim to have had no part in crafting the screenplay, robbing the material of a further layer of authenticity.
Another American Crime Success Story?
The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story was a massive hit for Murphy. It stormed the Golden Globes in 2016, scooping Best Actress for Sarah Paulson, and Best Limited Series or Television Film overall. The series also picked up a number of Emmy Awards for its editing, styling, and casting among others.
Its follow-up chronicles the events surrounding Versace's murder, as played by Edgar Ramírez (The Girl On The Train, the Point Break remake), at the hands of Andrew Cunanan who will be portrayed by Glee alum Darren Criss. The series will also cover the gay community in San Diego, as well as Cunanan's struggles with the homophobic culture of the time.
Alongside Ramírez and Criss, the starry cast also boasts Penelope Cruz as Donatella Versace while Latin singing sensation Ricky Martin is slated to play Versace's longtime partner Antonio D'Amico.
Cruz told EW that she'd discussed her role with Donatella herself, in order to be as respectful as possible.
FX Fires Back At Versace Family
Adding another layer of intrigue to the proceedings, or perhaps capitalizing on the publicity, on Monday afternoon, just hours before FX's planned LA premiere of the show, the network as well as producers Fox 21 responded to the Versace family with their own statement.
"Like the original American Crime Story series The People vs. O.J. Simpson, which was based on Jeffrey Toobin's nonfiction bestseller The Run of His Life, FX's follow-up The Assassination of Gianni Versace is based on Maureen Orth's heavily researched and authenticated nonfiction best-seller Vulgar Favors, which examined the true-life crime spree of Andrew Cunanan. We stand by the meticulous reporting of Ms. Orth", they said.
FX's The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story hits screens on Wednesday, Jan. 17 at 10 p.m. ET/PT.