Billie Lourd will star in 'American Horror Story' Season 11, and Leslie Grossman is also rumored to ...

Ryan Murphy Confirmed The New AHS Theme & The Internet Has Jokes

The tweet about SATC took me out.

by Ani Bundel, Dylan Kickham and Sarah Halle Corey
Originally Published: 

American Horror Story has officially cleared a decade on air, but the series shows no sign of coming to a close. The seasonal anthology series is arguably more prominent than ever; it’s been renewed all the way through Season 13, it has the FX on Hulu spinoff American Horror Stories, plus two more spinoffs in the overall franchise, American Sports Story and American Love Story. So what’s in store for the upcoming AHS Season 11?

For the first seven seasons of AHS, the series arrived like clockwork every fall with a new theme and story that was always wholly unrelated to what came before. But with Season 8’s Apocalypse tying back to Season 3’s Coven, the AHS stories suddenly began taking turns that people didn’t expect. That stayed true in Season 9’s 1984, which added a significant campy-slasher twist in honor of the show reaching its 100th episode.

And then there was Season 10. Due to the Hollywood shutdown of 2020, the series was delayed by a year, and Murphy went in a totally new direction. Instead, the anniversary season became a Double Feature of two completely unconnected shorter stories.

With all this upheaval, fans are a little nervous about what’s to come with Season 11. Will the series return to singular, standalone stories? Will there be a season that ties back to earlier iterations? Or will the show go in a completely new direction once again? Here’s what we know so far.

AHS Season 11 Teaser

Part of the reason for fans’ trepidation is the way creator Ryan Murphy may be going about picking this season’s theme. In April 2021, Murphy put out a tweet taking the temperature of the fandom’s appetite for various story ideas. The tweet included the phrase “Expanding the Universe,” suggesting that whatever was to come, it would not be part of earlier stories.

AHS Season 11 Plot

On Sept. 29, Ryan Murphy officially announced the theme for Season 11: New York City. It makes sense that the 11th season will dramatize spooky tales from the history of the Big Apple, since filming took place on Fire Island at the start of September, and director Paris Barclay confirmed reports that he’d be directing episodes in the season by using the hashtag #AHSNYC.

The title was leaked on Sept. 26 and once it went viral, everyone started making jokes about what a New York City-themed AHS season could be about.

The season is rumored to be set in the ‘70s, revolving around infamous murderers and crises that took place in NYC during the era. Fans quickly drew comparisons to Murphy’s other period NYC-based series, Pose.

AHS Season 11 Cast

The Season 11 cast is full of returning favorites, as well as a few exciting AHS newbies. Franchise vets Zachary Quinto, Billie Lourd, Denis O’Hare, Patti LuPone, Sandra Bernhard, Isaac Powell, and Rebecca Dayan are confirmed to star, along with a crop of new faces: Charlie Carver, Gideon Glick, Russell Tovey, Joe Mantello, and Lee Aaron Rose. Frequent AHS star Leslie Grossman and American Horror Stories fave Nico Greetham are also expected to be on the Season 11 cast after being spotted at filming locations.

But one actor who doesn’t seem to be on next season’s roster: Sarah Paulson. Paulson has been a Ryan Murphy staple, not only starring in nearly every season of AHS, but also American Crime Story, Ratched, and others. But according to her recent interviews, Paulson is not yet contracted for Season 11 and does not believe she will be offered a role this time.

AHS Season 11 Premiere Date

The new season is officially set to premiere on Oct. 19 on FX.

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