Ryan Murphy on ‘Glee,’ ‘American Horror Story,’ gay hubbub and Emmys [Podcast]

Jessica Lange already misses Constance, that monstrously evil mother on “American Horror Story” now that the first season is kaput and “Glee” fans must soon face a terrifying turn of events on the next TV season: the cast size will be slashed. Those are the kinds of revelations you hear from producer/ writer/ series creator Ryan Murphy when you settle down with him for a long chaw on the phone.

Listen to the podcast recording below of our chat to hear his views on these key matters:

CONTROVERSY OVER ‘AMERICAN HORROR STORY’ MOVING OVER TO THE EMMY RACE FOR BEST MOVIE/MINISERIES 
Murphy doesn’t buy the hubbub. Yes, “American Horror Story” competed at the Golden Globes as a Drama Series, but that was last January – long before its producers could reveal that the show would wrap up its story line after season one. To tattle any earlier would’ve spoiled a key component of its suspense.

“I always felt that it was a miniseries,” he says. “When I pitched the show, it was imagined as a new kind of anthological series. Every year there would be a story that would have a beginning, a middle and an end.”

What about season two ahead? “It is a traditional trope of horror,” Murphy says. “It’s in a mental institution and, of course, there will be many, many weird twists. I think a lot of people will be surprised when they watch that first episode and they think, ‘Holy fuck! What am I watching?’ Everything gets peeled off as the year progresses.”

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WHAT’S AHEAD FOR “GLEE

“We’re cutting back on the number of characters,” he says of the hit Fox series that returns to the Emmys after two recent bids for Best Comedy Series. “After three seasons of a lot of those choir room scenes with 18 people, it became a bit much. The show has grown into a gargantuan.

“It’s exciting how we’re dealing with New York, where Rachel went off to in the end and how we’re dealing with Ohio with the new kids coming up and which couples are breaking up and which ones are staying together.”

Murphy acknowledges recent controversy over allegations that “Glee” has shown far fewer romantic gay scenes than heterosexual ones over the past TV season: “I really understand how important it is for so many young people to turn on a show and say, ‘Oh, I’m like that character and I wish I had that bravery.’ When I was growing up, I didn’t have that. I get it. I appreciate it. I commend the passion … but there is no other show on network television that has done more for gay characters and stories than ‘Glee’ and I’ve fought hard for that.”

UPDATE ON FILM VERSION OF “THE NORMAL HEART”
“I love (author) Larry Kramer. We’re working on the shooting draft of the script right now. We’re adding a lot of new stuff to it that’s rather bold. It will probably start preproduction later this year.”

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