Glee’s Darren Criss to play gay Versace serial killer
Former Glee star Darren Criss will be playing Andrew Cunanan, the serial killer who murdered Gianni Versace, on American Crime Story.
The anthology TV series will focus on a different topic each season, with last year’s season starring Cuba Gooding Jr as OJ Simpson.
The third season, set to air in 2018, will focus on the case of Cunanan, who went on a three-month killing spree in 1997, in which he murdered five people including fashion designer Gianni Versace before taking his own life.
The motive for the killings was never clear, though newspapers made much of the sexuality of the openly gay serial killer, who lived in San Francisco’s Castro District and frequented local gay bars.
It has been reported this week that Darren Criss will play Cunanan in the upcoming show, which begins production next month.
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According to The Hollywood Reporter, Bourne Ultimatum star Edgar Ramirez will star opposite him as Gianni Versace. Criss is a frequent collaborator of Murphy, appearing as Blaine Anderson on his former show Glee.
The show will draw from Maureen Orth’s 1999 book Vulgar Favors, which covers the murder of Versace and the resulting manhunt for Cunanan, attempting to offer a psychological profile of the killer.
US network FX accelerated production after reading the first script and clearly being impressed by it. It’s expected that showrunner Murphy will direct the first episode.
Versace, born in 1946, founded the iconic fashion house that boasts his name, and ran the company until his death. He was survived by his partner, model and designer Antonio D’Amico, who now runs his own fashion company.
American Crime Story’s first series, The People v. O.J. Simpson, picked up 10 Emmy Awards this year, including Outstanding Miniseries.
Murphy recently opened up about the issues he had with “very homophobic” studio executiveswhile making Popular, one of his earlier shows.
He’s hoping to do better himself though, and has committed to hiring a diverse directing team, including women and ethnic minorities, across all his shows by the end of this year.
Versace was survived by partner Antonio D’Amico.