Ryan Murphy Defends ‘American Crime Story’ Amid Versace Family Outrage

The family of Gianni Versace have slammed the second season of American Crime Story, which investigates the gay designer's murder, calling it "a work of fiction".


Following a successful first season examining the OJ Simpson ‘trial of the century’, American Crime Story is back with a new season.

This time it will explore the assassination of Gianni Versace at the hands of Andrew Cunanan in 1997.  It promises to bring all the drama, 90’s glamour and Donatella (played by Penelope Cruz) moments everyone hoped for.

Edgar Ramirez will play Gianni Versace, while Darren Criss will play Cunanan.


Ricky Martin also starring as Antonio D’Amico, Versace’s partner.

They have based the show in part on Maureen Orth’s 1999 book “Vulgar Favors: Andrew Cunanan, Gianni Versace, and the Largest Failed Manhunt in US History.”


Ahead of the premiere on January 17th, the family of the iconic fashion designer have broken their silence. In a statement, they suggest that the creators of the show have taken some artistic licence in their depiction of events:

“The Versace family has neither authorized nor had any involvement whatsoever in the forthcoming TV series about the death of Mr Gianni Versace,” the family said in a statement via the fashion house. “Since Versace did not authorize the book on which it is partly based nor has it taken part in the writing of the screenplay, this TV series should only be considered as a work of fiction.”

Fox 21 Television and FX Productions, which produce the series, responded with their own statement defending the integrity of the show:

“Like the original American Crime Story series ‘The People Vs OJ Simpson,’ which was based on Jeffrey Toobin’s non-fiction bestseller ‘The Run of His Life,’ FX’s follow-up ‘The Assassination Of Gianni Versace’ is based on Maureen Orth’s heavily researched and authenticated non-fiction best seller ‘Vulgar Favors’ which examined the true-life crime spree of Andrew Cunanan. We stand by the meticulous reporting of Ms Orth.”


Penelope Cruz playing Donatella Versace

Penelope Cruz spoke to E! about the accuracy of the series. Cruz said the story is treated with “a lot of respect and she feels a lot of love and admiration for them (the Versace family)”.

She added that the first thing she did when she got the part was phone Donatella Versace. Cruz said that Donatella said that”if somebody was going to play her, she was happy that it was me. I think she knew that I was going to put all the respect that I feel for her [into the role]”

American Crime Story Season Two Premieres January 17th on FX

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