‘American Horror Story’ Season 4 ‘Freak Show’: Murphy Says It is Freak Show, ‘Not’ Circus or Carnival

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By Anshu Shrivastava | March 31, 2014 9:49 PM EST

Ryan Murphy, co-creator of "American Horror Story," has poured cold-water on the rumours that the new season of his horror anthology series, which is sub-titled "Freak Show," will have a carnival or a circus theme.

At the PaleyFest, Murphy said, as quoted by TV Guide, "The thing we're working on now is the opposite of what we did last year," Murphy said. "It's not a circus and it's not a carnival. It's a freak show, which is very unique."

Fans alone cannot be blamed for the rumours of a carnival setting. One of Murphy's writers had almost confirmed that season four will have a carnival setting.  

Douglas Petrie, writer and co-executive producer of "American Horror Story," had confirmed during the Nerdist Writer's panel podcast that the new season will be set in a carnival, saying that "that's [carnival] the idea, that's very roughly the idea." At the time, the fourth season still did not have a sub-title.

For season 4, the actors who will return in "some capacity" are Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Emma Roberts, Kathy Bates, Evan Peters, Angela Bassett, Gabourey Sidibe, Roberts, O'Hare, Jamie Brewer and Frances Conroy. Murphy indicated that some of the actors who starred in season 1 and season 2 are also likely to return, as well.  

The newest addition to the casting list is veteran actor Michael Chiklis. He has been roped-in to play ex-husband of Kathy Bates' character and the father of Evan Peters' character.

Entertainment Weekly recently reported that Jessica Lange's character will portray the role of a "German ex-pat." In her final "American Horror Story" appearance, Lange will be shown managing one of the final freak shows in the U.S.

Kathy Bates, Sarah Paulson, Evan Peters, Angela Bassett and Frances Conroy are expected to play performers of the freak show. They have been rescued by Lange's character and will do anything to keep the business going.

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