Last night was the final night of Paleyfest 2014 and closing down the event was an American Horror Story panel discussion featuring show creators Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk (seen above as Siamese twins Eng and Chang Bunker) and a slew of cast members including Emma Roberts, Sarah Paulson, Kathy Bates, Angela Bassett, Gabourey Sidibe, Frances Conroy, Jamie Brewer, Denis O’Hare and Evan Peters. As you would expect, the “coven love-in” featured lots of reminiscing on the show’s witch-themed third season (its most
-witched-watched ever) as well as a few tidbits about what fans can expect in Season 4, which was previously revealed to be titled American Horror Story: Freak Show.
Here’s a video of some of the panel discussion:
“The idea of this year was that we wanted it to be more modern and contemporary and glamorous,” Ryan Murphy said of Coven. Brad Falchuk added, “What Coven became was this idea of mothers and daughters. What does it mean to be a mother? What does it be more daughter? You can’t have a more female horror genre than witches.”
And why wasn’t The Grand Supreme Jessica Lange present at the event? The cast revealed she was spending spring break with her grandchildren. “She bakes for them — in the furniture from last season!” joked Kathy Bates, referring to Jessica’s apparent propensity for keeping props from the set. “Jessica probably took the light fixture,” Paulson joked, “She’s a thief!”
As far as next season, the biggest news came in the form of a cast announcement as Ryan Murphy revealed The Shield‘s Michael Chiklis will be joining the Freak Show! “What a way to come back to my home network,” Chiklis said to the frenzied crowd. “We’re going to freak you and scare you!”
So who will be back to star alongside Chiklis? “Every person on this stage is coming back,” said Murphy, which means Kathy Bates (Delphine LaLaurie), Emma Roberts (Madison Montgomery), Angela Bassett (Marie Laveau), Sarah Paulson (Cordelia Grove), Gabourey Sidibe (Queenie), Frances Conroy (Myrtle Snow), Jamie Brewer (Nan), Denis O’Hare (Spalding) and Evan Peters (Kyle Spencer). It was assumed that most of those names would be back, but Emma Roberts and Denis O’Hare were reportedly still hammering out a deal recently, so it’s great to hear they worked it out!
Ryan Murphy also clarified a little more about the storyline for American Horror Story: Freak Show. “It’s not a circus, it’s not a carnival, it’s a freak show set in 1950, and it was a concept that Jessica Lange talked about as she wanted to play this type of character,” Murphy said. “We’re shooting in New Orleans, but the series will be set in Florida,” he added. Lange will be playing a German expatriate who is in charge of the last freak show in the US, located in Jupiter, Florida. Chiklis will be playing the ex-husband of Kathy Bates’ character. That’s about all we know.
Here is a gallery of photos from the event, including Kathy Bates giving a peck on her own cheek: