Despite news that Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story: Katrina project had stalled, FX boss John Landgraf is confident the project will air, noting that Katrina is in really good shape.
The thematically different follow-up to The People v. O.J. Simpson was initially expected to air in 2018 ahead of The Assassination of Gianni Versace, but the latter is now slated to debut in early 2018 ahead of Katrina. Earlier at the Television Critics Association’s press tour, Underground director Anthony Hemingway, who was attached to Katrina, told The Hollywood Reporter that the project had stalled. But Landgraf says Murphy will have some news on Katrina‘s future soon.
“I’m confident that it will air and I’m really, really excited,” Landgraf said at TCA on Wednesday. “It was a big creative pivot we made. It was a difficult decision because we were far along one creative direction, and Ryan decided — and we supported Ryan — that the bar is really high for this franchise and we just weren’t confident we were going to get over it. Simultaneously, there was an idea for a creative pivot, which I’m going to let Ryan announce to you when he feels the time is right to do. But I think you’ll see when he does, it’s a really, really exciting idea. I’m now more confident about it creatively than I was before we made this pivot. I think one of the directors, Anthony Hemingway, had said it stalled. It’s not. It’s in a really good shape, but Ryan is trying to get his ducks in a row to make an announcement to you guys. I don’t think he’ll be ready to even today, but I think it’ll come out relatively soon.”
It’s still unclear whether the push in production will mean the trio of actors who previously signed on will still be on board. As announced earlier this year, Dennis Quaid was tapped to play President George W. Bush alongside Matthew Broderick as Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Director Michael D. Brown, who was in charge of the government’s response to the disaster, and Annette Bening as Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco.
Landgraf was also optimistic about the future of the potential fourth installment based on the Monica Lewinsky scandal. The creative minds behind the award-winning FX miniseries had optioned the rights to author Jeffrey Toobin’s book A Vast Conspiracy, which chronicled the affair between Lewinsky and then-President Bill Clinton and the ensuing legal fallout. “I hope so,” Landgraf told EW of making the project following his panel at TCA. “We love the book. We are developing it as a script. We really want to make it. We just need to get the script right and we don’t have it yet.”
On another Murphy project front, Landgraf also gave EW an update on the upcoming second season of Feud, which will delve into the ill-fated romance of Prince Charles and Princess Diana. “Ryan hasn’t declared a start date but he intends to do it in England,” the FX chief said. “He will direct it in England sometime early next year. Jon Robin Baitz, the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, is doing the scripts. And we have material on that so that one is coming along really well.”
—Additional reporting by Lynette Rice