As part of ramping up production on original series, FX Chairman John Landgraf made a slew of series announcements at the Television Critics Association 2021 virtual summer press tour on Friday.
The network is picking up American Sports Story, focused on the tragic story of New England Patriots’ Aaron Hernandez, and American Love Story, focused on another tragic story—the romance and marriage of John F. Kennedy Jr. and Carolyn Bessette, who ultimately perished in a plane crash over Cape Cod in July 1999.
Both shows come from the production team of Ryan Murphy, Nina Jacobson, Brad Simpson, and Brad Falchuk, and are produced by FX sister studio 20th Television, Landgraf said Friday.
“We’ve also commenced development on another potential cycle of American Crime Story centered on Studio 54 and have other Crime Story subjects we are working on but are not quite ready to announce,” Landgraf said.
Murphy—for years Fox and FX’s biggest hitmaker with shows such as Glee, American Horror Story, 9-1-1 and more—took his overall production deal to Netflix in April 2018 in a five-year deal reported to be worth $300 million. That deal is up in April 2023—less than two years from now. Asked whether Landgraf would like to have Murphy back at Disney and Twentieth Century Fox, Landgraf said “if you ask me if I would like it to happen, the answer is yes.” As to whether that could happen, Landgraf said “I don’t have the answer to that question because I think it lies within the free market and ultimately within Ryan Murphy’s purview.”
“He gets to decide where he makes his deal and what he does. And from where I sit, he’s been extraordinarily productive for Netflix, and obviously we continue to work with him and I’m thrilled by the work that he’s done with us. So it’s probably premature to speculate on what will happen that far out. But if you’re asking me would I like Ryan to make his home at Disney and with 20th and Dana Walden and, therefore, at FX, yeah, of course. I love working with him.”
In the meantime, anthology series American Horror Stories is currently airing on FX and FX on Hulu and was renewed for a second season, and the tenth season of American Horror Story, Double Feature is set to premiere on FX on Wednesday, Aug. 25, with next-day availability on FX on Hulu. American Horror Story: Double Feature stars Finn Wittrock, Frances Conroy, Billie Lourd, Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, and Lily Rabe as well as new cast members Macaulay Culkin and Neal McDonough.
Another series from Murphy & Co., Impeachment: American Crime Story, based on the story of Monica Lewinsky and the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, premieres on FX on Tuesday, Sept. 7.
Other new series orders include Retreat from Brit Marling and Zal Batmanglij, the writer, producer and directors of Netflix’s The OA; The Spook Who Sat by the Door, based on the novel of the same title about the CIA’s first Black agent; Kindred, based on Octavia Butler’s novel of the same name; comedy series pilot The Bear; and limited series Fleishman is in Trouble based on Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s best-selling novel.
On the animated front, FX picked up Little Demon from creators Darcy Fowler, Seth Kirschner, Keiran Valla and executive producers Danny DeVito and Dan Harmon, starring DeVito, Aubrey Plaza, Lucy DeVito and Michael Shannon. FX also has two more installments of animated anthology Cake coming up.
FX also has previously announced series orders in progress for Shogun, Great Expectations and Class of ‘09, starring Atlanta’s Brian Tyree Henry and A Teacher’s Kate Mara.
Noah Hawley—a creator like Ryan Murphy who has produced many shows for FX, including Fargo and Legion—is in progress on a series based on Ridley Scott’s Alien movies, although Hawley’s take on Kurt Vonnegut’s Cats’ Cradle is not going forward, Landgraf told reporters.
FX also renewed vampire comedy What We Do in the Shadows through season four ahead of its season-three premiere on Sept. 2. Also premiering this year are B.J. Novak’s anthology series The Premise on Sept. 16; and Y: The Last Man on Monday, Sept. 16. Long-running comedy It’s Always Sunny… returns for season 15 later this fall.
Upcoming on FX in the first half of 2022 will be the fifth season of Pamela Adlon’s Better Things, season three of Donald Glover’s Atlanta; season five of Snowfall; new unscripted series Welcome to Wrexham from It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s Rob McElhenney and Free Guy’s Ryan Reynolds; The Old Man, starring Jeff Bridges, John Lithgow, Amy Brenneman and Alia Shawkat; season four of Mayans M.C.; docuseries Dear Mama, based on the lives of Tupac and Afeni Shakur; limited series Under the Banner of Heaven; season three of Breeders, starring Martin Freeman; and Danny Boyle’s limited series Pistol.