Ryan Murphy, the prolific, Emmy® and Golden Globe® award-winning producer who pioneered the modern limited series form with the award-winning anthology American Horror Story and whose American Crime Story has been a critical and ratings triumph with its first installment The People v. O.J. Simpson, is launching a new FX limited series. Today FX has placed an order for Murphy’s latest anthology franchise, Feud, an 8-episode series that will explore the bouts and blows of epic conflicts, it was announced by John Landgraf, CEO, FX Networks and FX Productions. Fox 21 Television Studios will produce the series for FX.
The first installment of Feud stars Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon and tells the story of the legendary rivalry between two of the greatest movie stars of all time—Joan Crawford (Lange) and Bette Davis (Sarandon), and how they came together in 1962 to collaborate on a picture each hoped would revive their careers. The result, the critically acclaimed and box office smash What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? ultimately received five Academy Awards nominations and became a cult classic. But for its leads, Joan Crawford and Bette Davis, the real horror was working together. The pilot is based in part on the script “Best Actress” by Jaffe Cohen and Michael Zam which Murphy purchased. Murphy will direct several episodes of the series.
In addition to Academy Award winners Jessica Lange and Susan Sarandon, the cast includes celebrated actors Alfred Molina as the film’s director Robert Aldrich, Stanley Tucci as studio titan Jack Warner, Judy Davis as gossip columnist Hedda Hopper and Dominic Burgess as Crawford and Davis’ co-star Victor Buono.
Feud hails from Fox 21 Television Studios (The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, Homeland) and will be executive produced by Murphy and Plan B Entertainment’s Brad Pitt and Dede Gardner. The first installment begins production this fall and will air in 2017 on FX.
“Ryan keeps re-inventing TV,” said FX Networks CEO John Landgraf. “Nip/Tuck brilliantly extended the boundaries of ad supported television. Glee re-imagined the television musical. American Horror Story pioneered the modern anthological series, which has rapidly transformed the television landscape and been widely copied. The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story was recognized by many as the best and most talked about new show this year. And all of those shows have been award-winning ratings hits. Feud adds a third and equally ambitious franchise to Ryan’s unprecedented slate of FX anthological limited series and marks our third such collaboration with studio partner 20th Century Fox Television/Fox 21. The series will offer a seductive, insightful look at what lies behind legendary personality conflicts.”
“Ryan revolutionized the modern anthology with the American Horror Story and American Crime Story franchises, and he’s come up with another gem in Feud,” commented Fox Television Group Chairmen and CEOs Dana Walden and Gary Newman. “With Jessica and Susan headlining, it’s already sure to be flawlessly acted, wildly entertaining and fiercely provocative. It’s a fantastic project which only Ryan Murphy could deliver.”
Ryan Murphy is the Emmy and Golden Globe award-winning writer/producer and director of the hit drama series Glee (FOX) and Nip/Tuck (FX), as well as the limited series American Horror Story (FX), Scream Queens (FOX) and American Crime Story (FX). American Horror Story, which will debut its sixth installment this fall, is the highest-rated series in FX’s history, and The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story is the most-watched new program on cable television in 2016 and the most-watched new series in FX history. Murphy also received his first-ever Tony® Award nomination for the 2016 Broadway revival of Long Day’s Journey Into Night.
Jessica Lange is an award-winning actress who has worked in film, theater and television. The recipient of several awards, including two Academy Awards®, three Emmys, five Golden Globes®, one SAG Award and three Dorian Awards. She made her professional film debut in the 1976 action-adventure King Kong, for which she won her first Golden Globe Award. She made her Broadway debut playing Blanche DuBois in the 1992 revival of A Streetcar Named Desire. Other stage roles include the 2000 West End revival of Long Day’s Journey into Night, for which she received an Olivier Award nomination as Best Actress, the 2005 Broadway revival of The Glass Menagerie and the 2016 Broadway revival of Long Day’s Journey Into Night, for which she has been nominated for her first-ever Tony Award. She was also nominated for a 2016 Drama Desk Award in the category of “Outstanding Actress in a Play,” 2016 Drama League Award in the category of “THE DISTINGUISHED PERFORMANCE AWARD,” and 2016 Outer Critics Circle Award in the category of “Outstanding Actress in a Play.” She won her first Screen Actors Guild Award, fifth Golden Globe Award, and second and third Emmy Awards for her performances in the first and third seasons of FX’s acclaimed limited series American Horror Story (2011–2015).
Susan Sarandon is an award-winning actress noted for choosing diverse and challenging projects both in film and television. Sarandon won an Academy Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role for Dead Man Walking and was also nominated in the same category for Thelma & Louise, Lorenzo’s Oil, The Client and Atlantic City. In 2008, she received an Emmy Nomination for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Miniseries for her role in the HBO film Bernard and Doris, as well as a Golden Globe and SAG nomination. She received an Emmy and SAG nomination for her work in You Don’t Know Jack with Al Pacino for HBO. Other film credits include Wall Street 2: Money Never Sleeps, Lovely Bones Enchanted, Speed Racer, Elizabethtown, Shall We Dance?, The Banger Sisters, Mr. Woodcock, In the Valley of Elah, Alfie, Moonight Mile, Igby Goes Down, Romance and Cigarettes, Twilight, Step Mom, The Hunger, Jeff Who Lives at Home, That’s My Boy, Cloud Atlas, Robot & Frank, Arbitrage, Snitch, The Company You Keep, Tammy, The Last of Robin Hood and The Calling. Sarandon’s most recent features include The Meddler and About Ray with Naomi Watts and Elle Fanning.