Writer/producer Ryan Murphy is on creative fire with his exclusive deal at Netflix where he has already created the forthcoming series The Politician and the prequel to One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Ratched. Now he’s announced via Instagram a third series, Hollywood, which promises to take viewers back to the Golden Age era of that “town.”
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“Hollywood” — my new Netflix show co-created with Ian Brennan — begins principal photography this summer. A love letter to the Golden Age of Tinseltown, this straight-to-series production will be my third show for Netflix and I couldn’t be more excited or proud about the work we are doing together. More to come…
This isn’t Ryan’s first journey back to the era, having previously visited it with his critically acclaimed Susan Sarandon and Jessica Lange series Feud, recreating the rivalry between Joan Crawford and Bette Davis. Of that show, his frequent collaborator, Tim Minear, explained in an exclusive interview, “Ryan Murphy has always been interested in this story and, as you know, I’ve been working with him on American Horror Story since the first year. I’ve also had an obsession with Old Hollywood; I’ve been trying to get an Old Hollywood show off the ground for, I don’t know, eight or maybe 10 years. You could probably see some of that work reflected in some of the episodes of things I’ve done. Like the Angel episode ‘Are You Now or Have You Ever Been.’ So it’s always been an obsession of mine.
“Ryan,” he continues, “had optioned a screenplay called Best Actress, and he was going to be doing that with Plan B, which is Dede Gardner and Brad Pitt’s company. At some point he realized that instead of making a movie, this could be a limited series. And that was, of course, after he had reinvented the limited series with American Horror Story and they became the vogue thing to do on television. Now they’re all over the place. But he started it. And so, when he decided to do that, he knew that was an interest of mine and he approached me about teaming up with him to do that in the off-season after Horror Story, so of course I jumped at it. It’s like a dream come true.”
As to the allure of that bygone era, Tim comments, “Well, it’s everything. I work in this business, so it’s going to be something that interests me. I’m also from California, more or less. I mean, I was born in Manhattan, but I grew up out here from the time I was four. So, I live in the middle of it and it’s the history that surrounds me. Beyond just loving old movies and loving the history of Hollywood, and being a classic movie buff, the history that surrounds me in Southern California has always been fascinating to me. From the silent period on. This town, Las Angeles, is a paradise that sprung up out of a desert through sheer will. And there’s a lot of great stories to be told. And because it is the career that I have chosen and been lucky enough to make my living doing, I feel like all the people who came before me … That I sort of owe it to them to tell their stories whenever I can. I know that sounds probably incredibly pretentious and self-important, but that is how I feel.”
No word on when Hollywood will go into production and be ready for streaming.