Actress Angelica Ross, who has appeared on Ryan Murphy shows Pose and American Horror Story: 1984 is calling out the showrunner for leaving her on read regarding an idea she had for an all-black season of American Horror Story.
Ross posted screenshots of emails sent between herself and the prolific producer dating back to July 2020 on Monday, in which Murphy seemed to confirm the existence of the season and asked Ross for guidance on which other women should lead the installment.
“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?”
The rest of the screenshot displays Ross’ response to Murphy’s email, also dated July 3, 2020, in which Ross responded enthusiastically and suggested several Black actresses who could participate in the season, including Debbi Morgan, Lynn Whitfield, Alfre Woodard, Angela Bassett, Gabrielle Union, Viola Davis, Kerry Washington, Lupita Nyong’o, Halle Berry and Amiyah Scott.
Ross then wrote in a TikTok video that she was “left on read” by Murphy after following up over email. In the email dated Feb. 7, 2022, Ross asked if she could be considered to be involved in writing and producing of the season, writing in the email that “I could add a lot to the table in the overall storyline if we are still looking to do a Black lead cast.”
“After not hearing back. After sending flowers and no response I sent one last email in Feb. 2022 (it took about a year to film season 10 due to COVID) while still contractually in first position with the show,” Ross wrote in a tweet. “Mind you, Marvel had called twice now. I haven’t heard from him since.”
An individual familiar with the matter told TheWrap that Murphy’s FX anthologies often contemplate multiple ideas before moving forward with a premise to develop for an upcoming season.
For example, the second season of “American Crime Story” was originally supposed to be about Hurricane Katrina before it became “The Assassination of Gianni Versace.” Likewise Season 10 of “American Horror Story” (“Double Feature”) was at risk of having its theme changed due to weather conditions and COVID-19 delays.
That's not all. Angelica then went on IG live and revealed that actress Emma Roberts misgendered her while filming American Horror Story: 1984.
In the original Instagram Live video, Ross said Roberts was joking around, saying “Anglica is being mean” while speaking with a man named John on set (presumably “AHS” director John J. Gray). Ross, who is transgender, said John then told the two women, “OK, ladies, you know, that’s enough. Let’s get back to work.” That’s when Roberts allegedly looked at Ross and said, “Don’t you mean lady?,” implying there was only one lady between the two of them.
“Like, what the fuck did you just say?” Ross remembered thinking. “I’m standing there, she walked away, my blood is boiling. Boiling because I’m like, if I say something, it’s gonna be me that’s the problem. And I know this because there was someone who spoke up about what she was doing and they got repercussions from it. Not her — they did.”
“When I saw that happening, I was just like, ‘I’m done. I’m done.’ I didn’t speak to that bitch the entire time after that,” Ross continued. “She said to me she could feel the energy coming off of me. She was like, ‘Are you OK? You haven’t been talking.’ I’m like, ‘Mmhmm,’ Cause bitch don’t play me. You’ve been playing mind games with everybody on the set and everybody’s been waiting for the moment that you would get me.”
Angelica has revealed that since this revelation, Emma has called her to apologize for her behavior.
“Thank you @RobertsEmma for calling and apologizing, recognizing your behavior was not that of an ally,” Ross wrote in an update to fans. “I will leave the line open to follow up on your desire to do better and support social justice causes with your platform.”
I'm glad that Emma was woman enough to apologize, and I also hope this was a teachable moment for her.