After facing criticism for his antics during the ongoing WGA strike, television creator Ryan Murphy is now being called out by a former actress from one his most critically acclaimed and diverse programs.
On Monday night, actress Angelica Ross, who starred in Murphy-produced FX series Pose (as well as American Horror Story: 1984), called out the Emmy winner for allegedly leaving her “on read” after approaching her about a potential AHS season starring Black women.
On Twitter (now called X), Ross posted several screenshots of emails between her and Murphy, who appeared to ignore her after his initial pitch, along with a quote from the book-turned-Hulu-Series The Other Black Girl about “white people who went out of their way to present diversity.”
“Remember your idea about a HORROR seasons starring Black women? Well I’m doing it,” Murphy wrote in an email to Ross on July 3, 2020, according to the screenshot. “Not sure of the story yet, but we will start a writers room in the fall. Along with you, who are the four women I should get? I think you, Keke Palmer, Gabby … Not sure of the fourth?”
Ross then shared a TikTok of her speaking on a 2018 SAG-AFTRA panel, in which she praised Murphy but emphasized the importance of Black creators telling trans stories. The video—which features the caption “Left on read”—also shows her response to Murphy on July 3, suggesting numerous Black actresses for the potential AHS season.
In another email, dated Feb. 7, 2022, Ross asks Murphy if she could be on the “producing side” of the project. Ross tweeted that she “[sent] flowers” but received no response, adding that she had been contacted by Marvel “twice” in the meantime.
Following Ross’s allegations, a source told The Wrap that Murphy “often contemplate[s] multiple ideas before moving forward with a premise.” In response, Ross tweeted that the real issue was that she was forced to wait “for months trying to get clarity” on her employment at FX.
This isn’t the first time Ross has been outspoken about her experiences with Murphy and FX, where Murphy had a lucrative deal. Back in July, after the Writers Guild of America announced their walkout, Ross wrote about a missed opportunity with Marvel Studios while under a 7-year contract with the cable network on Instagram. The actress claimed she was “put on hold” by the network after being told she would be cast in AHS Season 11, now subtitled “Delicate,” which she ultimately was not a part of.
Ross’ outspokenness isn’t exactly surprising, as Murphy has emerged as an much-maligned anti-union figure throughout the WGA strike. Back in July, the six-time Emmy winner was widely scrutinized for continuing the production of the upcoming American Horror Story: Delicate, while other major television shows stopped filming in solidarity with striking writers. He received even more backlash after The Hollywood Reporter reported that he threatened to sue former WGA strike captain Warren Leight after he accused the showrunner of anti-union practices, including telling the AHS crew that they would be black-balled if they joined the walkout.
Murphy called Leight’s claims “categorically false” prior to his attorney reaching out to the WGA. Still, Hollywood writers have remained openly critical about the streaming mogul. Many insist that he is, indeed, “scabbing,” as writers are still utilized during television shoots.
It seems like Murphy and FX might face even more damning accusations soon, as Ross alluded that she faced transphobia and racism on one of Murphy’s sets in another tweet. With the buzzy Delicate premiering on Wednesday, all eyes will be on the controversial creator. Even with Kim Kardashian’s role drawing a lot of attention, he should probably prepare for the worst on social media.
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