The upcoming second season of anthology series "American Crime Story," "The Assassination of Gianni Versace," is billed as a dramatic retelling of the true story of the 1997 murder of the famed fashion designer (played by Edgar Ramirez), and the desperate search for his killer (played by Darren Criss). But according to the family of Versace, the show is nothing but "fiction."
The Versace family released a simple -- but still scathing -- statement about "ACS" this week, claiming that no one from the show's creative team reached out to them to ask for their input while making the series. Furthermore, the family said that it did not authorize or collaborate in any way on the writing of the book on which much of the series is based, "Vulgar Favors," by journalist Maureen Orth.
Here's the statement in full:
"The Versace family has neither authorized nor had any involvement whatsoever in the forthcoming TV series about the death of Mr. Gianni Versace. 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."
Despite that rebuke, FX and production company 20th Century Fox are standing by the Ryan Murphy series, as well as Orth's book. A joint statement in response to Versace's comments said:
"Like the original 'American Crime Story' series 'The People vs O.J. 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."
"The Assassination of Gianni Versace" will not only focus on the titular horrific crime, but also depict events from before the designer's murder, including his relationship with his sister Donatella (played by Penelope Cruz) and his longtime partner (played by Ricky Martin). It's set to premiere on FX on January 17.
[via: Entertainment Weekly]