As details on the upcoming fifth season of American Horror Story roll in, co-creator Ryan Murphy has spoken to its tone, one he calls more horror-based and a little bloodier and grislier.
Speaking to Deadline about all things AHS, Murphy indicates Hotel will subvert expectations. As Freak Show was a colorful, sad season with often weekly musical acts, one might expect the new Lady Gaga-led season to follow suit. People, keep saying to me, What numbers are they singing, what numbers are they singing, and I say there will be no numbers, Murphy explains.
The interesting thing is we cast a lot of singers this season but I like that singers, for the most part, are always great actors because they know how to sell a story through song, through a scene. Im excited about that and I think thats why Gaga was excited about it; its not something that shes ever done before. Its a pure acting part. I think people expect that shes going to be sitting in a bar in a white silk gown sort of singing songs she is not. The upcoming season that were doing is much more horror-based; its much more dark. Its about a theme and an idea thats very close to my heart that Ive always wanted to do thats a little bloodier and grislier I think than anything that weve done before; its straight horror this year.
Speaking to the horror, Murphy says he was inspired by hotels and the space they occupy in the genre. Its based in the hotel in horror movies and horror tropes. Weve researched several real-live hotels in downtown LA where absolutely horrifying things happened. Murder House [American Horror Storys first season] I thought was a very primal season because everybodys great fear is about the bogeyman under the bed in their house, and this feels similar to me in that when you check into a hotel, there are certain things beyond your control. Other people have the keys to your room; they can come in there. Youre not exactly safe, its a very unsettling idea.
While American Horror Story has carved a space for itself as the most outspoken seriesone where truly anything goesa return to out-and-out horror focus feels much needed. Murder House was so striking in where its unsettling nature intersected with the series kinky sensibilities. The same goes for the grim Asylum.
Murphy further adds that Denis OHare will be likely returning to the series for Hotel, and to never say never when it comes to Jessica Lange. For the full conversation, which touches on Freak Shows poetic tone and more, head here.