How does American Horror Story top a first season that included a ghost in a rubber fetish suit, a Frankenstein-like monster baby dressed in a Christening gown, and Dylan McDermott’s bare buttocks? It heads to a loony bin run by nuns! Well, and it also introduces [SPOILER ALERT] aliens, Nazis, and a serial killer named Bloody Face who wears a mask made out of his victims skin along with black nightie and opera length gloves. Oh, and, just for good measure, the lead singer of Maroon 5 shows up. “It is absolutely terrifying. Very gruesome,” says frontman Adam Levine of American Horror Story: Asylum (in case you don’t believe him, check out these photos). “And what’s great about the fact that it’s on FX is that you can go too far. You can do really unorthodox, crazy things that people are going to talk about.” Adds co-creator Ryan Murphy, “I don’t think people tune in to the show because they want My Dinner With Andre. I think they want to be scared. I’m just writing what I would like to see. I’m scared of aliens and I’m scared of Nazis and I’m scared of nuns. So it’s the perfect stew of horror and fear.”
This week, Entertainment Weekly takes you EXCLUSIVELY behind the highly secretive, super wild new installment of AHS, appropriately subtitled Asylum. “We are going Ryan Murphy-style all the way to the crazy house,” says star Sarah Paulson. While some of last year’s cast are returning (Paulson, Jessica Lange, Evan Peters, Zachary Quinto, Lily Rabe), they will be playing entirely new roles in an entirely new storyline set within an asylum for the criminally insane called Briarcliff Manor. “Every year of the show is a different miniseries, and there will be several chapters,” explains co-creator Ryan Murphy. “You need as your leading man or leading lady an institution to haunt.” Adds co-creator Brad Falchuk, “To me, last year was a family drama. This is our version of a workplace drama.”
This particular workplace is run by a wickedly stern nun named Sister Jude (Lange) who is surrounded by a cast of characters ranging from a possible former Nazi, Dr. Arden (James Cromwell), to nymphomaniac patient Shelley (Chloe Sevigny). But Sister Jude is also quite a troubled woman with a dark past that will resurface. “If I were playing a straitlaced nun, start to finish, I can’t say that would interest me too much,” says Lange. “What’s great are the extremes. To go from where she was and where she’s getting to, that’s what’s going to be interesting.” Meet the rest of the characters/cast of American Horror Story: Asylum here.
For more on American Horror Story: Asylum, stay tuned to EW.com and pick up this week’s issue of Entertainment Weekly for our exclusive set visit along with behind-the-scenes photos and details from the cast and creators.