Fan favorite Evan Peters, who played sympathetic teen psychopath Tate on the first season of “American Horror Story,” Lily Rabe (Nora) and Sarah Paulson (Billie Dean) will join Jessica Lange and Zachary Quinto on the second season of the anthology horror series.
The show’s executive producer, Ryan Murphy, announced the returning cast at the show’s panel on Friday, the opening night of the Paley Center for Media’s annual PaleyFest in Los Angeles.
Murphy revealed a few more details about the second season, which will feature entirely new characters and a new setting. “Everybody will be playing the exact opposite of what they played [in Season One],” he said.
There probably will not be any ghosts. “Our only rule is no vampires or werewolves. I think a supernatural element will always be a part of the show, but I think we’re trying to do something more historically accurate,” he said. The second season will premiere the third week of October.
Murphy also confirmed that the show was originally pitched as an anthology. “It’s hard to maintain the tension of a horror show for three or four seasons.” The actors knew from the start that most of their characters would be dead by the end of the season. “I thought it was a happy ending. I knew they’d have a moment in death where the regrets and lies [subsided],” he said. He saw the arc of the Harmons as a “novella about adultery.”
Murphy promised that one of Season One’s remaining mysteries, the identity and fate of Constance’s fourth child, will eventually be addressed. “We have not lost sight of the fourth child. We do have that story… We want to answer that. It could be the fourth season.”
Lange explained that she agreed to take her first contract role in a television series because of Murphy’s persuasive sales pitch. “I’d never had a man really promise that much.” At the red carpet prior to the event, Lange said of her character, Constance, “There was a little bit of [Tennessee Williams] being from the South and being a failed beauty queen starlet with a lot of disappointment in her life and falling on hard times. There was a great element of Williams to her.” Murphy described Constance as, “What would have happened to Blanche Dubois after she got out of the loony bin.”
The raucous panel had several raunchy moments. Dylan McDermott (Ben) described what it was like to wear the show’s infamous rubber sex suit. “I had to be fitted for this suit. You have to be naked and you have to be lubed.” Lange and Murphy were also amused by a male audience member who came to the event dressed in drag as Constance.