Wednesday, October 23, 2019

‘American Crime Story’ to take on the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky scandal

  • >>John Koblin, The New York Times
    Published: 2019-08-07 09:50:17 BdST

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Ryan Murphy’s popular television series “American Crime Story” will return for a third season that will tackle the Bill Clinton-Monica Lewinsky scandal, FX announced Tuesday afternoon.

Lewinsky will be a producer of the new season, which will be titled “Impeachment: American Crime Story.”

Murphy had teased the idea of a Monica Lewinsky-themed season, and last year he told The Hollywood Reporter that he would only do it with Lewinsky’s participation.

“I told her, ‘Nobody should tell your story but you,’ ” Murphy said last year. “If you want to produce it with me, I would love that.” She agreed.

In the series, Beanie Feldstein (“Lady Bird”) will portray Lewinsky, Sarah Paulson will play Linda Tripp, and Annaleigh Ashford (“Masters of Sex”) will play Paula Jones. FX did not announce who would play the president.

This will be just the latest reexamination of the 1998 sex and impeachment scandal. Last year, A&E released a six-part documentary series, “The Clinton Affair,” and the Lewinsky-Clinton scandal was also the subject of a popular season of the Slate podcast “Slow Burn.”

Expectations will be huge. The first installment of the FX series, “The People v. OJ Simpson” set ratings records for FX in 2016 and won the Emmy and the Golden Globe for best limited series. The second installment, “The Assassination of Gianni Versace,” which came out last year, also won the best limited series Emmy and Globe.

Playwright Sarah Burgess will write the new season, which FX said would begin Sep 27, 2020. It will go into production in February.

John Landgraf, the FX chief executive, said the series would be based on the book “A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President,” by Jeffrey Toobin.

“There’s a lot of nuance in the story that people don’t know,” Landgraf said.

There were industry-wide doubts whether a third season would come at all. A proposed season focused on Hurricane Katrina was shelved twice.

Murphy signed an overall deal with Netflix last year for $300 million and is one of the busiest producers in Hollywood. His first project for Netflix, a series called “The Politician,” will premiere next month. He is working on at least two other Netflix projects, in addition to ongoing FX series like “American Horror Story” and “Pose.”

© 2019 New York Times News Service