EXCLUSIVE: In what will likely be one of the biggest cable sales of the year, Glee and American Horror Story co-creator Ryan Murphy is out shopping a racy new project. Open, which he is creating and writing with Dexter co-executive producer Lauren Gussis, is described as a modern, provocative exploration of human sexuality and relationships. The subject matter seems to lend itself to premium cable, though I hear selected basic cable networks are also being pitched. The project just hit the marketplace, and I hear there are already multiple networks bidding. Open marks Murphy’s first project with Fox 21, the cable production division of 20th Century Fox TV where Murphy is under a rich overall deal.
Murphy has three series on the air, which he co-created and executive produces: Fox’s Glee, FX’s AHS and freshman NBC comedy The New Normal. A fifth-season renewal for Glee is pending, and Murphy just unveiled that the upcoming third installment of AHS will be titled American Horror Story: Coven and will star Kathy Bates in addition to Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson and Taissa Farmiga. Additionally, CAA-repped Murphy is directing the film adaptation of Larry Kramer’s celebrated Broadway play The Normal Heart for HBO, with Julia Roberts and Mark Ruffalo starring. Gussis, repped by CAA and Circle Of Confusion, also worked on ABC’s Once Upon A Time.
Fox 21’s slate includes the Emmy-winning Homeland for Showtime; FX’s Sons Of Anarchy; A&E’s Those Who Kill; and the FX pilot Tyrant, from Howard Gordon, Gideon Raff, and Craig Wright, which recently tapped Ang Lee as director.