The second installment of Ryan Murphy’s Emmy and Golden Globe-winning anthology series, American Crime Story is set to unveil in two weeks and anticipation couldn’t be higher, especially if you’ve watched the blistering new trailer promoting The Assassination of Gianni Versace.
The techniques Murphy fans have come to expect (and possibly loathe) are on full display in this long-form promo that briefly details the rise of fashion designer Versace (played by Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramirez) and his death at the hands of a man named Andrew Cunanan (Darren Criss). The trailer presents a barrage of images stuffed into the frame like a closed-circuit television camera.
Rapid-fire editing emphasizes the chaos left in the wake of Versace’s murder, punctuated by sirens and a blood-spattered Ricky Martin, playing Versace’s longtime lover Antonio D’Amico screaming for help. There also looks to be a sufficiently gaudy atmosphere, appropriate in a series about a fashion designer, as the audience is inundated with scenes of long marble hallways, slo-mo doves, nightclubs and bright colors.
Like Murphy’s previous series, The People versus O.J. Simpson, The Assassination of Gianni Versace hopes to look under the surface of the crime to find deeper meaning, particularly regarding both Versace’s and Cunanan’s homosexuality. (A detective confusing Versace with Liberace makes a telling comparison.)
The trailer comes off as Criss-heavy, trying to grasp at why Cunanan turned into a multiple murderer (he killed four men previously before Versace). There are brief glimpses of Ramirez’s white-haired Versace, but his presence is predominately relegated to being seen in photographs or spoken about by others. There are a few shots of Spanish actress Penelope Cruz’s highly anticipated performance as Versace’s sister, the equally acclaimed designer Donatella Versace.
The Assassination of Gianni Versace looks to be right in Murphy’s wheelhouse, but hopefully it doesn’t get bogged down in aesthetics. What makes the Versace assassination so interesting is how little information there was on Cunanan or his motives, everything felt random when the murders took place in 1997. Ramirez and Cruz look fantastic, and considering how compelling The People vs O.J. Simpson turned out to be, The Assassination of Gianni Versace should be no different.
The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story premieres January 17, 2018 on FX at 10 p.m.