In its first season, American Crime Story used one of the most famous crimes in American history - O.J. Simpson's murder trial - as the first backdrop for their series. Now? They're taking on the murder of famed Italian fashion designer Gianni Versace.
The anthology's second instalment, The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, juggles three storylines, a crimes-in-reverse structure and a stellar cast to tell the story.
You may have seen the series' commercial grace your screens a few times a day over the past couple of months, and if you have, there's a good chance you're extremely excited for the premiere on January 17th.
The trailers depict the Versace murder as a drama-filled, dark and twisted storyline. But how much of American Crime Story Versace murder is real? Here's everything you need to know about the Versace family IRL before sitting down to watch the premiere next week.
The series focuses mainly on Andrew Cunanan
The main thing to know is that the new series focuses much more prominently on American serial killer Andrew Cunanan than on Gianni Versace himself. Cunanan murdered at least five people, including fashion designer Gianni Versace and Chicago tycoon Lee Miglin, during a three-month period in mid-1997. There are a lot of details about Cunanan's killing spree that are public knowledge, but much of his motivations for his crimes are unknown - he committed suicide shortly after killing Versace.
The Versace Family have called the series 'a work of fiction'
The Versace family said in a statement to Variety that the show should be considered a work of fiction: "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."
But the show is still based on actual events
On July 15, 1997, Andrew Cunanan shot and killed Gianni Versace on the front steps of Versace's Miami mansion. In the months leading up to Versace's murder, Cunanan went on a cross-country killing spree from Minneapolis to Miami, leaving at least four dead bodies in his wake. The series is based off Maureen Orth’s book Vulgar Favors: Andrew Cunanan, Gianni Versace, and the Largest Failed Manhunt in U.S. History.
The role of Gianni Versace will be played by Edgar Ramirez, while Glee star and singer Darren Criss will play Andrew Cunanan. Penelope Cruz will take up the role of Gianni's sister, Donatella.
The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story premieres on FX on January 17th and will consist of nine episodes.