FX’s anthology series American Horror Story is surely one of the wildest shows on television today. Over the past three seasons, viewers have explored a haunted house, a wacky 1960s insane asylum and (in the show’s strongest outing yet) a coven of modern-day witches. And along the way, showrunner Ryan Murphy has pushed buttons with ghosts in fetish suits, psychotic Santas, minotaur sex and just about every other bizarre twist in between.
Given how gleefully unrestrained American Horror Story has been thus far, Murphy’s unveiling of the subtitle for the upcoming fourth season honestly doesn’t come as much of a surprise. Today, the showrunner tweeted that the official title will be American Horror Story: Freak Show:
AMERICAN HORROR STORY SEASON FOUR: pic.twitter.com/6OHYzGjPMd
— Ryan Murphy (@MrRPMurphy) March 24, 2014
If that title reveal wasn’t enough, we also learned some details about the upcoming series, thanks to Entertainment Weekly. Though we knew already that American Horror Story: Freak Show would take place at a carnival in the 1950s, the site confirmed that star Jessica Lange (returning for what will be her final season) will be playing “a German ex-pat who is managing one of the last freak shows in the U.S” out of Jupiter, Florida.
Lange’s previous parts have included a nefarious neighbor in Murder House, the head nun at Briarcliff Mental Institution in Asylum and the Supreme witch in Coven, so she’s certainly no stranger to playing lead roles on American Horror Story. And seeing as Murphy only has the veteran actress for one more season, he’ll surely be pulling out all the stops to give her an appropriately nutty part.
Kathy Bates, Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Angela Bassett and Frances Conroy are all playing performers in Lange’s circus, and Dennis O’Hare and Emma Roberts are also both expected to return in undetermined roles. No word yet on any other actors, though we can probably expect to see some familiar faces. Personally, I’d love to see returns for Zachary Quinto, Dylan McDermott and James Crowell, a trio of strong actors all absent from Coven. Whether Kate Mara and Lily Rabe, both who’ve had roles in the past, are now too big for the show remains to be seen, but it’d also be fantastic to see those two actresses land parts.
American Horror Story: Freak Show will open its doors for 13 episodes on FX this fall.