Ryan Murphy (writer)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Ryan Murphy
Ryan Murphy at PaleyFest 2013.jpg
Murphy at the PaleyFest 2013 panel for The New Normal
Born Ryan Patrick Murphy
(1965-11-30) November 30, 1965 (age 51)
Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
Occupation Screenwriter, director, producer
Alma mater IU Bloomington
Spouse David Miller (m. 2012)
Children 2

Ryan Patrick Murphy (born November 30, 1965) is an American screenwriter, director and producer. Murphy is best known for creating/co-creating/producing a number of successful television series, including the FX medical drama Nip/Tuck (2003–10), the Fox musical comedy-drama Glee (2009–15), and the FX anthology series American Horror Story (2011–present), American Crime Story (2016–present) and Feud (2017–present). He is also known for directing the 2010 film adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert's bestselling memoir Eat, Pray, Love and the 2014 HBO film adaptation of Larry Kramer's The Normal Heart, which earned a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Television Movie.

Early life[edit]

Murphy was born on November 30, 1965, in Indianapolis, Indiana,[1] where he was raised in an Irish Catholic family.[2][3] He attended Catholic school from first through eighth grade,[2] and graduated from Warren Central High School in Indianapolis. He has described his mother J. Andy Murphy as a "beauty queen who left it all to stay at home and take care of her two sons." She wrote five books and worked in communications for over 20 years before retiring. His father worked in the newspaper industry as a circulation director before he retired after 30 years.[4]

After coming out as gay, Murphy saw his first therapist, who found nothing wrong with him other than being "too precocious for his own good."[2][4] During a 2012 interview on Inside the Actors Studio, Murphy claimed that he secretly dated "a lot of football players" in high school,[5] he performed with a choir as a child, which would later inform his work on Glee.[2] Murphy attended Indiana University Bloomington, where he majored in journalism.[1]



Murphy started as a journalist working for The Miami Herald, Los Angeles Times, New York Daily News, Knoxville News Sentinel and Entertainment Weekly. He began scriptwriting in the late 1990s, when Steven Spielberg purchased his script Why Can't I Be Audrey Hepburn?.[4]


Popular and Nip/Tuck[edit]

Murphy started his career in television with the teen comedy series Popular, which he co-created with Gina Matthews, the series premiered on The WB on September 29, 1999[6] and ran for two seasons, ending in 2001. He then created the FX drama series Nip/Tuck, which premiered on July 18, 2003; in 2004, Murphy earned his first Primetime Emmy Award nomination for Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series.[4] Murphy took the show's signature line, "Tell me what you don't like about yourself," from a plastic surgeon he met when he was a journalist researching an undercover story on plastic surgery in Beverly Hills, the series ended after six seasons in 2010.


On May 19, 2009, Murphy's musical comedy-drama series, Glee, premiered on Fox, he co-created the series with Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan. In its early seasons, the show was critically lauded.[7] Murphy won his first Primetime Emmy Award for directing the pilot episode,[8] the series concluded in 2015 following its sixth season.[9] Murphy was one of four executive producers on the reality television series The Glee Project, which premiered on Oxygen on June 12, 2011,[10] the show featured a group of contestants vying for the prize of a seven-episode arc on Glee, with someone being eliminated each week, until the winner is chosen in the final episode. The show was renewed for a second season, which ended up being its last.[11]

The New Normal[edit]

Murphy and Glee co-executive producer Ali Adler created the half-hour comedy The New Normal, which premiered on NBC on September 10, 2012. The series was based on Murphy's own experiences of having a child via surrogate, with the main characters, Bryan and David, named for Ryan and his husband,[12] the series was ultimately cancelled after one season.[13]

Anthology series[edit]

Murphy and Falchuk created the anthology series American Horror Story, which premiered on FX on October 5, 2011, some of the same cast has played different characters in a different setting each subsequent season.[14][15] In October 2014, FX greenlit a companion anthology series, American Crime Story, which Murphy and Falchuk executive produce, the series premiered on February 2, 2016.[16]

Murphy, Falchuk and Brennan next co-created the comedy-horror semi-anthology series Scream Queens, which premiered on Fox on September 22, 2015,[17] the series was later cancelled after two seasons.[18][19]

Murphy's next project, the drama anthology series Feud, premiered on FX in 2017, the first season focused on the rivalry between Bette Davis and Joan Crawford on the set of their 1962 film What Ever Happened to Baby Jane?.[20] On June 30, 2017, a day before her 101st birthday, Olivia de Havilland, the only Hollywood star depicted in the series who is still alive,[21] filed a lawsuit against the Feud: Bette and Joan series for inaccurately portraying her and using her likeness without permission. In a 2017 interview, Murphy noted that he had not consulted with de Havilland because he "didn't want to be disrespectful and ask her, 'Did this happen? Did that happen? What was your take on that?'"[22]

List of series[edit]

Series Original run Role
Popular 1999–2001 (The WB) Co-creator
Nip/Tuck 2003–10 (FX) Creator
Glee 2009–15 (Fox) Co-creator
American Horror Story 2011–present (FX) Co-creator
The New Normal 2012–13 (NBC) Co-creator
Scream Queens 2015–16 (Fox) Co-creator
American Crime Story 2016–present (FX) Executive producer
Feud 2017–present (FX) Co-creator

Unsold pilots[edit]

Murphy has also created/produced a couple of failed pilots, the WB sitcom pilot St. Sass, starring Delta Burke and Heather Matarazzo, was not picked up. In 2008, Murphy wrote and directed the FX pilot Pretty/Handsome, which also was not picked up.[23] By April 2013, HBO had given a pilot order for Murphy's sexuality drama Open, which began filming in late 2013.[24] By September 2014, HBO had opted not to proceed to series.[25]

Frequent casting[edit]

Actor Popular
American Horror Story
The New Normal
Scream Queens
American Crime Story
Total roles Ref.
Jacob Artist Jake Puckerman Todd Connors 2
Angela Bassett Various 2
Kathy Bates Various Joan Blondell 2
Willam Belli Cherry Peck Party guest Nana Drag Queen 2
Matt Bomer Cooper Anderson Various Monty 3
Connie Britton Vivien Harmon Faye Resnick 2
Frances Conroy Jane Fields Various 2
Darren Criss Blaine Anderson Justin Andrew Cunanan 3
Jessalyn Gilsig Gina Russo Terri Schuester 2
Cuba Gooding Jr. Dominic Banks O. J. Simpson 2
Max Greenfield Gabriel Santo Versace 2
Leslie Grossman Mary Cherry Bliss Berger Meadow Wilton Melissa 4
Neil Patrick Harris Bryan Ryan Chester Creb 2
Colton Haynes Detective Samuels Tyler 2
Jackie Hoffman Frances Mamacita 2
Cheyenne Jackson Dustin Goolsby Various 2
Bryce Johnson Josh Ford Corporal Oliver Brandt Cody Tolentino 3
Jessica Lange Various Joan Crawford 2
NeNe Leakes Roz Washington Rocky Rhoades 2
Billie Lourd Winter Anderson Sadie Swenson/Chanel #3 2
Jane Lynch Suzi Klein Sue Sylvester 2
Ricky Martin David Martinez Antonio D'Amico 2
Lea Michele Rachel Berry Hester Ulrich 2
Sarah Paulson Agatha Ripp Various Marcia Clark Geraldine Page 4
Lily Rabe Lanie Ainge Various 2
Andrew Rannells Himself Bryan Collins 2
Emma Roberts Various Chanel Oberlin 2
John Stamos Carl Howell Brice Brock Holt 3
Finn Wittrock Various Jeffery Trail 2


In 2006, Murphy wrote the screenplay for and directed the feature film Running with Scissors. Based on the memoir by Augusten Burroughs, the movie version starred Annette Bening, Alec Baldwin and Brian Cox and, as the young Burroughs, Joseph Cross. In 2010, Murphy directed Julia Roberts in an adaptation of Elizabeth Gilbert's memoir Eat, Pray, Love. The film was a box office success but a critical failure, receiving harsh reviews criticizing its pacing and lack of credibility. To date, the film has grossed $204,482,125 worldwide.[26]

Murphy next directed the 2014 television film adaptation of Larry Kramer's Broadway play The Normal Heart, starring Mark Ruffalo, Roberts, Baldwin, Matt Bomer and Jim Parsons.[27] Murphy then collaborated with The Normal Heart executive producer Jason Blum to produce the remake of the cult-classic horror film The Town That Dreaded Sundown.[28] The film was the directorial debut of Alfonso Gomez-Rejon and was also released in 2014.

Murphy has several films in development: Dirty Tricks, a political comedy, One Hit Wonders, a musical comedy, and a sequel to The Normal Heart; in 2014, Murphy was developing a feature film of the life of reclusive heiress Huguette Clark, based on the bestselling book Empty Mansions: The Mysterious Life of Huguette Clark and the Spending of a Great American Fortune.[29]

Personal life[edit]

(l-r) Governor appointee Don Norte, Glee co-creator Ryan Murphy, and Norte's husband, gay activist Kevin Norte, at Spring Time G.L.A.A.D. 2010's Charitable Event in Century City, Los Angeles, California.

Murphy grew up in a Catholic household and continues to go to church,[2][30] he serves on the National Advisory Board of the Young Storytellers Foundation. He once owned a house designed by renowned mid-century modern architect Carl Maston.[31]

Murphy has been married to photographer David Miller since July 2012,[32] on December 24, 2012, Murphy and Miller welcomed their first child, a son named Logan Phineas, via a surrogate. In October 2014, they welcomed their second son, Ford.[33]

In October 2015, Murphy received the Award of Inspiration from the Foundation for AIDS Research for his contributions to TV and film as well as his work in the fight against AIDS.[34]


Ryan Murphy has had some public arguments with famous bands and their members, including Slash from Guns N' Roses, Dave Grohl of the Foo Fighters, and Kings of Leon lead singer, Caleb Followill, and drummer, Nathan Followill.[35] These arguments have stemmed from the musicians declining Murphy when asked to have their music covered on Glee.

Awards and nominations[edit]

Emmy Awards[edit]

Ryan Murphy has won 4 Emmy awards out of 25 nominations[36] as a producer, writer and director.

Year Category Nominated work Result
2004 Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series
2010 Outstanding Comedy Series
Outstanding Writing for a Comedy Series Nominated
Outstanding Directing for a Comedy Series Won
2011 Outstanding Comedy Series Nominated
2012 Outstanding Miniseries or Movie
American Horror Story
Outstanding Main Title Design Nominated
2013 Outstanding Miniseries or Movie
American Horror Story: Asylum
Outstanding Main Title Design Nominated
2014 Outstanding Television Movie
The Normal Heart
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
Outstanding Limited Series
American Horror Story: Coven
Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
2015 Outstanding Limited Series
American Horror Story: Freak Show
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
Outstanding Main Title Design Nominated
Outstanding Short-Format Nonfiction Program
American Horror Story: Extra-Ordinary Artists
2016 Outstanding Limited Series
The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
Outstanding Short Form Nonfiction or Reality Series
Inside Look: The People v. O. J. Simpson: American Crime Story
2017 Outstanding Limited Series
Feud: Bette and Joan
Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
Outstanding Main Title Design Nominated
Outstanding Writing for a Limited Series, Movie, or Dramatic Special Nominated
Outstanding Short Form Nonfiction or Reality Series
Feud: Bette and Joan: Inside Look


  1. ^ a b "Ryan Murphy Biography: Screenwriter, Director, Television Producer (1965–)". Biography.com (FYI / A&E Networks). Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved February 14, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "From Nip/Tuck to High School Glee", Fresh Air, NPR, May 19, 2009, retrieved November 25, 2009 
  3. ^ Martin, Denise (April 26, 2009). "'Glee' team rewrites the school musical". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved September 16, 2010. 
  4. ^ a b c d Roberts, Sheila, Ryan Murphy, Director of Running with Scissors Interview, Movies Online, retrieved November 25, 2009 
  5. ^ Ziegler, Cyd. "'Glee' creator Ryan Murphy claims he dated 'a lot of football players' in high school." Outsports.com. 2012-04-10. Retrieved 2016-04-13.
  6. ^ Bialis, Michael. "Ryan Murphy Makes His Lighthearted Plea With Glee". blogcritics.org. Retrieved October 28, 2010. 
  7. ^ Seidman, Robert (September 21, 2009). "FOX sings praises of Glee with full-season pickup". TVbytheNumbers.com. Retrieved November 26, 2009. 
  8. ^ "Glee". Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Retrieved August 10, 2011. 
  9. ^ Brown, Laurel (April 19, 2013). "'Glee' renewed for two seasons: FOX orders Season 5 and Season 6 early". Zap2it. Retrieved April 21, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Emmy® Award Winners Ryan Murphy and Dante Di Loreto Sign On To Executive Produce Oxygen's "The Glee Project"". Facebook. Retrieved January 23, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Oxygen Picks Up Second Season of Critically Acclaimed "The Glee Project," Returning Summer 2012". Oxygen. January 17, 2012. Retrieved January 21, 2012 – via TheFutonCritic.com. 
  12. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (January 27, 2012). "Ryan Murphy's NBC Comedy Lands Pilot Order". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 2, 2012. 
  13. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (May 7, 2012). "NBC Gives Series Orders to Ryan Murphy Comedy, J.J. Abrams Drama". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 19, 2012. 
  14. ^ Frankel, Daniel. "'American Horror Story' gets season 2 order from FX". Reuters. Retrieved October 30, 2011. 
  15. ^ Mullins, Jenna (December 22, 2011). "American Horror Story Season Two Scoop: New House and (Mostly) New Faces". E! News. Retrieved February 26, 2012. 
  16. ^ "'American Horror Story' Companion Series 'American Crime Story' From Ryan Murphy Set At FX – O.J. First Topic". Deadline.com. October 7, 2014. 
  17. ^ "Ryan Murphy & His 'Glee' Co-Creators Get Fox Series Order For Comedy-Horror Anthology 'Scream Queens'". Deadline.com. October 20, 2014. 
  18. ^ Wagmeister, Elizabeth; Birnbaum, Debra (May 15, 2017). "‘Scream Queens’ Officially Canceled at Fox After Two Seasons". Variety. Retrieved May 15, 2017. 
  19. ^ Swift, Andy (May 15, 2017). "Scream Queens Cancelled at Fox". TVLine.com. Retrieved May 15, 2017. 
  20. ^ "FX Orders Ryan Murphy Anthology Series Feud, Jessica Lange & Susan Sarandon To Star In First Installment: Crawford v Davis". Deadline.com. May 5, 2016. 
  21. ^ Bradley, Laura (June 30, 2017). "FEUD: Why Olivia de Havilland Is Suing FX Over Feud: Bette and Joan". VanityFair.com. 
  22. ^ "Olivia de Havilland sues FX over Feud: Bette and Joan". BBC.com. 1 July 2017. 
  23. ^ Andreeva, Nellie (February 17, 2011). "FX Orders Pilot From Ryan Murphy & Brad Falchuk, Duo Remains Committed To 'Glee'". Deadline.com. Retrieved September 8, 2011. 
  24. ^ Andreeva, Nellie. "Ryan Murphy's Provocative Relationship Drama 'Open' Lands At HBO With Pilot Order". Deadline.com. Retrieved April 14, 2013. 
  25. ^ "HBO Not Moving Forward With Ryan Murphy Sexuality Drama 'Open'". The Hollywood Reporter. September 11, 2014. 
  26. ^ "Eat Pray Love". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved February 26, 2011. 
  27. ^ Kit, Borys (January 20, 2012). "Julia Roberts, Alec Baldwin, Matt Bomer and Jim Parsons to Star in Ryan Murphy's Next Film". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved February 2, 2012. 
  28. ^ Kit, Borys; Goldberg, Lesley (January 17, 2013). "Ryan Murphy and Jason Blum Teaming Up for MGM's Remake of 'The Town That Dreaded Sundown'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 5, 2014. 
  29. ^ "Ryan Murphy Options Movie Rights To Bestseller 'Empty Mansions'". Deadline.com. March 14, 2014. Retrieved October 11, 2014. 
  30. ^ Poniewozik, James (March 7, 2005). "Queer Eye for Straight TV". Time. Retrieved August 20, 2008. 
  31. ^ "Carl Maston". La Curbedm. Retrieved October 11, 2014. 
  32. ^ Van Meter, Jonathan (September 18, 2012), "Ryan Murphy's Hope: Is American Ready for The New Normal?", Vogue, retrieved September 18, 2012 
  33. ^ "Ryan Murphy Second Child: Glee Creator Welcomes Baby Via Surrogate With Husband David Miller". Us Weekly. October 6, 2014. Retrieved October 11, 2014. 
  34. ^ "Lady Gaga to Perform at amFAR Event Honoring Ryan Murphy". 
  35. ^ "'Glee' creator Ryan Murphy to Kings of Leon: 'F-- You'". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 11, 2014. 
  36. ^ "Ryan Murphy". emmys.com. 

External links[edit]