Ryan Murphy’s American Crime Story anthology series is one of his most acclaimed for FX, right up there with Pose. Like American Horror Story, it doesn’t follow a single tale. Instead, each season is a stand-alone limited series under the ACS umbrella. The first, 2016’s The People v. O.J. Simpson, was a critically acclaimed success and an awards magnet. The second, 2018’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace, was less decorated, although still seen as some of Murphy’s most substantial work. It’s been three years since then, but the next iteration is almost here. Here’s what to know about Impeachment: American Crime Story, from its cast to its release date.
Despite the critical acclaim, the American Crime Story anthology has not had a smooth ride. Murphy’s decision to tell the stories of real-life occurrences has made the series a bit of a hot-button show. For example, the Versace season drew the ire of the late Gianni Versace’s family for how he was portrayed in the series. And the two seasons that will follow, the current Impeachment one and another focusing on the 2005 Hurricane Katrina aftermath in Louisiana, have both been beset by delays.
In fact, at one point, it seemed like the Impeachment installment was on hold indefinitely until Murphy secured the involvement and blessing of Monica Lewinsky. The latter is an executive producer on the new season. With the first trailer, fans now have a good idea of what is heading this way.
Impeachment: American Crime Story Trailer
The opening teaser puts the focus directly on Lewinsky, showing her packing up a secret present for the president. Although Clinton appears out of focus in the final shot, this is clearly not about him, but about her.
The second teaser, which arrived a few days later, introduces another very important woman in this story: Linda Tripp.
Sarah Paulson is nearly unrecognizable as Tripp, the woman who reported Lewinsky’s affair with the president in what wound up as a failed attempt to bring him down. This teaser is also notable because it’s the first time viewers see the faces of the actors, both Paulson and Feldstein.
On Aug. 12, FX released the full trailer for the show, and, whoo boy, it is intense.
Impeachment: American Crime Story Cast
The cast is a who’s who of stars, including many faces who have appeared in other Murphy projects. The main set will be the three actors who play the women involved in Clinton’s scandals. Beanie Feldstein is the lead as Monica Lewinsky; Murphy regular Sarah Paulson plays Linda Tripp, Lewinsky’s friend who betrayed her secret. Alongside them, Annaleigh Ashford will play Paula Jones, who accused Clinton of sexually harassing her during his time as governor. (The lawsuit was dropped and they settled out of court.) Although she was vilified in the press at the time, her lawsuit helped change society’s attitudes toward the sexual harassment of women as merely something we all live with to something unacceptable in public life.
Other actors who have signed on for the project include Clive Owen as Bill Clinton and Billy Eichner as journalist Matt Drudge. It will also co-star Margo Martindale, Anthony Green, Cobie Smulders, and Colin Hanks.
Impeachment: American Crime Story Plot
Impeachment: American Crime Story is based on the book A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Story of the Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President by Jeffrey Toobin. It chronicles the mid-1990s sex scandals that plagued the Clinton presidency from his time as a candidate in 1992. (They were known as “Bimbo eruptions,” I kid you not.) As one might imagine, it will mainly focus on the 1997-1998 impeachment crisis that stemmed from Clinton’s cover-up of his affair with Lewinsky.
Impeachment: American Crime Story Release Date
Impeachment: American Crime Story debuts on FX on Tuesday, Sept. 7, 2021.
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