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The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story

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Poppy

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From Darren Criss Army:



‘American Crime Story’ Season 2 tackles assassination of Gianni Versace

Published by Breakfast Television Toronto (BT)

(Source: youtube.com)





Oooh.  Nice interview by the New York Times (good memories about that interview done by Patrick Healy of the NYT when Darren was on Broadway for How To Succeed).  I'll post the whole interview but please visit the site to give it a number of "clicks."   We must continue to show to these media sites that there is a lot of interest in articles about Darren.  :happy face thumbs up   The pics are beautiful too.

The New York Times wrote:
Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama

by Michael Schulman






Ryan Pfluger for The New York Times (Photo)


Jan. 12, 2018

MIAMI BEACH — At 6:30 in the morning, Darren Criss was bright-eyed and perky as he bounded out of his South Beach hotel and into a black car. It was the last day of shooting for “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story,” Ryan Murphy’s nine-episode follow-up to “The People v. O. J. Simpson.”

Mr. Criss plays the assassin and, the night before, he had been up late shooting a manhunt scene that blocked off a stretch of Collins Avenue, to the chagrin of nightclubbers and Uber drivers.


“That was a very cool rock-star moment,” Mr. Criss said in the car, wearing a ball cap and jeans. He flashed an easygoing grin, the kind that endeared him to legions of young fans of “Glee,” on which he played Blaine Anderson, the preppy, harmonizing love interest of Chris Colfer’s Kurt Hummel.


His new role on “American Crime Story” (which has its premiere on FX on Jan. 17) couldn’t be less gleeful: Andrew Cunanan, the gay gigolo turned serial killer who shot Mr. Versace in 1997, after killing four other men.

 
Mr. Criss, 30, leaned over and pointed out the window. “See that?” he said. “That’s the houseboat, perfectly recreated.” In Indian Creek, the crew had built a replica of Mr. Cunanan’s final hide-out, where he met his demise after a frenzied eight-day manhunt. The series makes use of several real locations in Miami Beach, most notably the Versace Mansion, the site of the murder, now a boutique hotel.

 
As the car turned into a parking lot full of trailers, Mr. Criss was all smiles, doling out greetings of “Hey, man!” and “Happy last day!” Even pre-caffeine, he was relentlessly chipper, which seems antithetical to playing a murderer. Or maybe not. Charm was Mr. Cunanan’s calling card, masking a desperate need for acceptance that curdled into pathology. And Mr. Criss’s exuberance on set, he said later, was a way of putting the crew at ease.  

“This is the first time I’ve been No. 1 on the call sheet, so you’re kind of the quarterback,” he said. “You set a tone. I take my work very seriously, but I don’t take myself seriously at all.”


He plopped down in front of a mirror, where a hair-and-makeup artist fitted him with a wig. Like any decent actor playing a villain, he had looked for Mr. Cunanan’s redeeming traits: his talent, his likability. “The bleeding idealist in me always likes to think that there are more things in common between all of us than there aren’t,” he said. Presumably, he meant “bleeding-heart idealist,” but the phrase seemed apt.


It was that chiaroscuro quality that caught the attention of Mr. Murphy, who as a co-creator of “Glee” gave Mr. Criss his breakout role. “Darren was seen by people as being a comedic actor, a Broadway musical star and a sensation: Mr. Charisma,” Mr. Murphy said. “I just knew he had the ability to go dark.”


Mr. Murphy has a knack for matching actors with career-changing roles, notably Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark in “The People v. O. J. Simpson.” The new series features Edgar Ramirez as Mr. Versace, Ricky Martin as his lover Antonio D’Amico and Penélope Cruz as his sister Donatella. (Last week, the Versace family released two statements calling the series an unauthorized “work of fiction.”)


But Mr. Criss was the linchpin. “He was my first and only choice,” Mr. Murphy said. “I truly wouldn’t have made it without him. I don’t know any other actor who would have been correct.”

Given Mr. Criss’s squeaky-clean image, the casting seems wildly against type. But Mr. Criss and Mr. Cunanan had some unlikely similarities, beginning with an uncanny physical resemblance. Both are half-Filipino California natives, and “we both revel in being different,” Mr. Criss said. As a teenager, he wore vintage bell-bottoms to high school, while the young Mr. Cunanan put dimes in his penny loafers for “that extra bit of flair.”


But while Mr. Criss channeled his charisma into singing and dancing, Mr. Cunanan faked his way into high society, lashing out when he didn’t get his way. Growing up in San Diego, Mr. Cunanan was a social butterfly in the Hillcrest neighborhood, where the gay and military communities overlapped, subsisting on sugar daddies and outrageous lies.


“The evidence is strong that he was a drug dealer and involved in crystal meth, so he would get a lot of money in cash and treat people to elaborate dinners,” said the writer Maureen Orth, whose Vanity Fair article about Mr. Cunanan grew into the book “Vulgar Favors,” the basis of the FX series. “At the same time, he was extremely aspirational. Even when he was hiding out in South Beach, he had the biography of William Paley. He had Architectural Digest. And then he’d go out at night and hustle.”


Shooting Mr. Versace was a crime “very much of anger,” Ms. Orth said. “Andrew had been rejected, and things hadn’t turned out for him the way he wanted. And he also was desperate to be famous, and he was willing to kill.”

 
From Theater Geek to ‘Glee’

By contrast, fame came easily to Mr. Criss. Even before “Glee,” he had garnered a following from his role in a satirical “Harry Potter” musical, which he put on with his post-collegiate theater company in Michigan. A YouTube version, with Mr. Criss as the boy wizard, went viral.


By then he was already a seasoned performer. Raised in San Francisco, the son of a prominent banker, he began studying classical violin when he was 5. Not long after, he saw “Aladdin” and decided he wanted to be the genie, or, barring that, an actor. The year of the Versace murder, he made his professional theater debut at age 10, in a local production of the 1954 musical “Fanny.” His big number was “Be Kind to Your Parents.”


He spent the next eight years studying at the American Conservatory Theater’s young conservatory program, while acting with 42nd Street Moon, a San Francisco troupe known for musical revivals. “After school, I was raised by gay 20-somethings,” he said of his adolescent years. “These are the people that I loved and looked up to and wanted to be around.”


His early introduction to gay culture helped prepare him for a career in which his best-known roles and a good chunk of his fan base are gay, though Mr. Criss himself is straight. (His longtime girlfriend is Mia Swier, a TV director and producer.) He’s a rare breed: theater geek filtered through California bro, which made an ideal combination for the pop dorkiness of “Glee.”


In the show’s early days, he auditioned unsuccessfully for a few bit parts, including a football player, until Mr. Murphy finally took notice of him and cast him as Blaine in Season 2. “I knew he could sing, I knew he could act, and I knew before we shot a frame of it, this kid’s going to blow up,” Mr. Murphy said.

 
He was right: Mr. Criss debuted on “Glee” in 2010, not long after getting a theater degree at the University of Michigan, and his cover of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” from his first episode shot up the Billboard charts. A vocal fan base kept the Kurt and Blaine romance steaming along, breaking television barriers as it went.

Mr. Criss burnished his overnight fame with stints on Broadway in “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” and “Hedwig and the Angry Inch,” and recorded music as a solo artist and with Computer Games, an alt-pop band he started with his brother, Chuck Criss. In 2015, he helped found Elsie Fest, an outdoor music festival in New York that has been called “Coachella for Show Tunes.”


Mr. Murphy first floated the idea of the Versace project three years ago, when Mr. Criss was in New Orleans while Mr. Murphy was there shooting the pilot for “Scream Queens.” Hearing the name Andrew Cunanan, Mr. Criss responded, “Oh, that’s right! The half-Filipino guy!” Later that summer, he was backstage at “Hedwig” in full makeup and heels when Mr. Murphy called: “‘Do you still want to do the Cunanan thing?’”


Channeling a Killer




In the makeup trailer in Miami, a stylist painted a meth scab on Mr. Criss’s leg and everyone got in a van. The morning’s agenda: a fictionalized scene in which the increasingly desperate Mr. Cunanan tries to swim his way to safety, but quickly turns back. The van stopped near a jetty at the northern tip of Bal Harbour, with the Ritz-Carlton looming in the background.

“This is going to be rad!” Mr. Criss said, barely containing his enthusiasm. The first assistant director went over the shot: stare at the water; take off shirt, shoes and sunglasses; zip up backpack; jump in.


“Shirt, shoes, sunglasses,” the actor repeated. “I like the alliteration of that.” Mr. Criss gazed at the beach. “Look at these colors, guys. It looks fake!”


The waves were crashing hard against the concrete. As the crew shot the scene at the end of the jetty, it was decided that the water was too choppy for Mr. Criss to actually get in, lest they lose their star to sea. Still, by the end of the take he was drenched from ocean sprays, stripped down to soaking white boxer shorts.


“That was insane,” he shouted while he walked back, as someone swathed him in a white robe. He smiled into the sun and took stock of his luck: “Just a day at the office. Who gets to do this?”


On a break, I mentioned that he seemed to be having fun, and he bridled. “I’m really careful with that word,” he said, his smile dissipating. “This is pretty gruesome material.”


During the eight-month shoot, he had been approached by several people who knew Mr. Cunanan. At an event in Los Angeles, he recalled, a Hollywood producer came up to him and said, “Oh, yeah, Andrew Cunanan, I used to hook up with him,” and added that the F.B.I. had warned him to be careful while Mr. Cunanan was still on the loose.

 
After a few takes, the crew moved to the beach to shoot Andrew’s dejected return to the shore: “my anti-James Bond moment,” Mr. Criss joked. He flung himself into the waves and trudged back onto the sand, kneeling and agonizing for the camera.

“Show us your face,” the episode’s director, Dan Minahan, instructed, and Mr. Criss revealed an anguished expression out of “Guernica.” After “Cut!,” he instantly reverted to his sunny self, saying, “I haven’t been in the water since we got back to Miami, so: check!”


Sitting down for lunch after the shoot, Mr. Criss described the series as a parable about “the ultimate creator and the ultimate destroyer,” in which resentment turned Mr. Cunanan from aspirant to assassin. “I approached Andrew from a pretty big place of hurt and pain and sorrow and sadness,” he said. “The story doesn’t horrify me as much as it breaks my heart.”


“And that’s why acting is such a fun art form to me, again as a bleeding idealist, a bleeding happy-go-lucky dude,” he said, grinning again at his sheer dumb luck. “People casually ask me, ‘How’s the show going?’ And I will say with no ounce of irony or hyperbole, ‘I’ve worked and waited my entire life for this moment, and I couldn’t be happier.’”


Moments later, something close to an irony did cross his mind: “It’s the life Andrew Cunanan would have dreamed of, frankly.”

 
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:  https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/12/fashion/darren-criss-assassination-of-gianni-versace.html?smid=pl-share







Article about a list of shows to watch:
Entertainment Weekly wrote:
This Week's Must List: 'The Assassination of Gianni Versace,' 'Paddington 2,' and 'Red Clocks'

January 12, 2018


ILLUSTRATION by LAURA LANNES for EW


1 of 10

The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story

The second installment of Ryan Murphy’s true-crime anthology series is a visceral, compelling, and disturbing look at the murder of the titular designer — and the man who killed him, Andrew Cunanan, played by a gripping Darren Criss. (FX, Wednesdays, 10 p.m.)

Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source: 
http://ew.com/news/must-list-assassination-of-gianni-versace-paddington-2-red-clocks/the-assassination-of-gianni-versace-american-crime-story/#gallery__slide--5836696












From dcriss-archive:










[HQ] Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama

via dcriss-archive















kmannmakeup: Darren Criss x @nytimes 
#styling @ashleypweston 
#grooming by Me #kindramannmakeup @tmgla
#darrencriss #newyorktimes #americacrimestoryversace #versace #grooming

via dcriss-archive








 

 
ashleypweston: Darren Criss x NEW YORK TIMES x KIMMEL  Saying it was a busy week with this guy would be an understatement  #AWerk #DarrenCriss #ACSVersace











Link











ryanpfluger: @darrencriss for the @nytimes up online & out this weekend in the style section. Photographed by the Broad in Los Angeles back in November. Another killer shoot (pun intended) thanks to @lyonse x








She is a senior politics reporter at Vox.  She also says "Go Blue" on her twitter page, so I'm guessing she went to U of Michigan?




Link








Some nice quotes from gleekto from the NYT interview (via dcriss-archive):

Darren Criss wrote:
People casually ask me, ‘How’s the show going?’ And I will say with no ounce of irony or hyperbole, ‘I’ve worked and waited my entire life for this moment, and I couldn’t be happier.’”

Moments later, something close to an irony did cross his mind: “It’s the life Andrew Cunanan would have dreamed of, frankly.
Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama

(via gleekto)








Darren Criss wrote:This is the first time I’ve been No. 1 on the call sheet, so you’re kind of the quarterback,” he said. “You set a tone. I take my work very seriously, but I don’t take myself seriously at all.
Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama (via gleekto)








Darren Criss wrote:
After school, I was raised by gay 20-somethings,” he said of his adolescent years. “These are the people that I loved and looked up to and wanted to be around.”

His early introduction to gay culture helped prepare him for a career in which his best-known roles and a good chunk of his fan base are gay, though Mr. Criss himself is straight. (His longtime girlfriend is Mia Swier, a TV director and producer.) He’s a rare breed: theater geek filtered through California bro, which made an ideal combination for the pop dorkiness of “Glee.
Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama

(via gleekto)







I really like what Ryan Murphy said about Darren in the NYT article.  Here are some quotes from Ryan:
Ryan Murphy wrote:
It was that chiaroscuro quality that caught the attention of Mr. Murphy, who as a co-creator of “Glee” gave Mr. Criss his breakout role. “Darren was seen by people as being a comedic actor, a Broadway musical star and a sensation: Mr. Charisma,” Mr. Murphy said. “I just knew he had the ability to go dark.”
 
[. . . ]

But Mr. Criss was the linchpin. “He was my first and only choice,” Mr. Murphy said. “I truly wouldn’t have made it without him. I don’t know any other actor who would have been correct.”

[. . . ]

In the show’s early days, he auditioned unsuccessfully for a few bit parts, including a football player, until Mr. Murphy finally took notice of him and cast him as Blaine in Season 2. “I knew he could sing, I knew he could act, and I knew before we shot a frame of it, this kid’s going to blow up,” Mr. Murphy said.
Darren Criss Plays the Happy-Go-Lucky Killer in the Versace TV Drama








darrencriss: 5 days. #ACSVersace





Quotes from Maureen Orth:
Buffalo News wrote:
Orth brings Versace murder to TV, recalls night Tim Russert might have talked to his killer

January 12, 2018

She dismissed some criticism here that the series makes Cunanan likable because she feels being erudite, well-read and having good taste made him that way.

"I found that specious," she said. "He was an incredibly charming personality. He wasn’t just simply a calculating evil personality, and that’s why he was able to gain the confidence of really lovely, sort of salt-of-the-earth, Midwestern guys and the people that he hung out with… So he had quite an interesting personality that was apart from the deep evil that lurked underneath."

She praised Criss' performance.

I think Darren did a beautiful job of being both creepy and charismatic at the same time," said Orth.
Source:  http://buffalonews.com/2018/01/12/orth-brings-versace-murder-to-tv-recalls-night-tim-russert-might-have-talked-to-his-killer/






Regarding when Versace will air on BBC Two for UK viewers (hopefully a couple of weeks after January 17)
Express wrote:
American Crime Story season 2 UK date: When does The Assassination of Gianni Versace air?

Jan. 12, 2018


When will The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story be released?

The Assassination of Gianni Versace is the second instalment of Ryan Murphy’s examination of infamous murder cases that rocked the world. 

The second season of the anthology series is officially released on FX in the US on Wednesday, January 17. 

It will then air shortly after on BBC Two for UK viewers. An exact date has not yet been set for the BBC Two release but it has been confirmed that it will be early 2018. The show will then stream on Netflix after its initial premiere. 


The first season, The People v OJ Simpson: American Crime Story, was released on BBC Two on February 15, 2016 after the initial US release of February 2.

So it’s likely UK fans won’t have to wait too long to enjoy what is set to be one of the biggest shows of 2018.
Source:  https://www.express.co.uk/showbiz/tv-radio/903747/american-crime-story-season-2-assassination-gianni-versace-uk-bbc2-netflix-penelope-cruz






This is nice to see Becca and Heather showing their support.  Constance Zimmer was on the animinated Transformers Robots in Disguise with Darren and we know who Tyler is.  :happy face

 















I believe he is a screenwriter and an actor.





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Last edited by Poppy on Sat Jan 13, 2018 12:25 am; edited 1 time in total


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Critics' Reviews of The Assassination of Gianni Versace:  American Crime Story



From Rotten Tomatoes:



Here's an excerpt from a review.
Entertainment Weekly wrote:
The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story is best when it leaves Versace behind

January 12, 2018

The Assassination of Gianni Versace doesn’t carry the same built-in awareness [as The People v. O.J. Simpson], even if the title literally contains a brand name. It’s also a trickier work, crisscrossing the country and most of the ’90s. If O.J. was an epic, this is a short-story collection. Some hit, some miss, all share a heartbreaking theme.

[. . . ]

They’re all victims of Cunanan, but they’re also victims of an uncaring world. At one point, Antonio’s interrogated by cops more interested in Gianni’s sex life than his brutal death: Another violation, and he hasn’t washed his lover’s blood off his tennis whites. In this not-distant-enough past, so much of gay identity was secret identity. And Cunanan’s rampage occurred because law enforcement agencies didn’t care about gay people. (And they knew it.

But there’s something flimsy in the foundation. I’m a fan of Criss, who ranks high in our Sacred Council of Darrens (right behind Aronofsky and the First One From Bewitched). But the structure renders Cunanan a bogeyman, and it’s only later in the season that he gets to shade him with real depth.   And the portrait of the Versace family feels respectful to the point of hagiography. Ramírez is trapped in a conventional great-man biopic, while Penélope Cruz as sister Donatella mouths fashion-industry bromides like “For a woman, a dress is a weapon.” I love the show’s willingness to explore everyone orbiting Cunanan’s murder spree, but the central characters feel held at a worshipful remove. Oddly, Versace is best when it leaves Versace behind.
Source:  http://ew.com/tv/2018/01/12/the-assassination-of-gianni-versace-american-crime-story-review/







From acsversace-news (via dcriss-archive):




This is mostly an interview, but also partially a review.  This critic is disappointed with the too-little amount of time spent focusing on Versace and his family.  The critic's statement about Darren's performance as Cunanan is sorta weird.  :very confused   Contains spoilers.
Star Tribune wrote:
Andrew Cunanan's Minnesota victims aren't forgotten in 'The Assassination of Gianni Versace'

January 11, 2018

The reverse-chronological approach of the series is bound to throw viewers, . . .

The emphasis on Cunanan over Versace (played by Edgar Ramírez, best known for portraying a terrorist leader in 2010’s “Carlos”) and his longtime lover Antonio D’Amico (pop star Ricky Martin) puts the pressure on actor Darren Criss, who made his name as a happy-go-lucky teen singer on the 2009-15 Murphy series “Glee.” His Broadway credentials are utilized in “Versace” only when Cunanan dances shirtless while torturing sexual partners during S&M sessions or sings along to “Pump Up the Jam” on the car radio while a deathly nervous Madson sweats in the passenger seat.
Source:  http://www.startribune.com/andrew-cunanan-s-minnesota-victims-aren-t-forgotten-in-the-assassination-of-gianni-versace/468871903/






Reason wrote:
American Crime Story Takes on Versace’s Murder

January 12, 2018

If Federico Fellini had ever visited South Beach, the result might have been something like The Assassination Of Gianni Versace—a long, horrified gaze at the corrupting effect of celebrity, not just on those who possess it, but on the culture in which they dwell.

[. . .]

This time around, Murphy and his screenwriter Tom Rob Smith (who in 2011 was a literary sensation with his Child 44 trilogy of novels about a homicide detective in Stalinist Russia) have taken square aim at celebrity and the cozenage it almost inevitably breeds.

[. . . ]

Murphy, as usual, has accumulated an excellent cast, including . . .

But this show is ultimately the loot in a strong-arm robbery by Darren Criss as the murderous Cunanan. Criss, who played an amiably handsome prep school boy in Murphy's high-school-musical series Glee, brings a terrifying intensity to his role as the preening, dissembling Cunanan.

Whether he's befuddling random club acquaintances with blather about his spectacular (and entirely notional) cutting-edge fashion use of crinoline or hacking them to pieces with sharp objects, Criss forges a compulsively watchable chain that locks the camera to himself. His face beams sincerity; his eyes, something more complicated and more compelling, something that makes an acquaintance who has caught Cunanan lying shrug helplessly at his rejoinder: "So?"

Criss is so good that his performance isn't even undercut by the clumsy decision of Murphy and Smith to embrace the Hollywood's pseudo-artistic fad for jump-cutting across story lines. Not only is The Assassination of Gianni Versace told backward—the first episode starts with Versace's murder, the last ends with the designer and his murder struggling with overweening fathers in their childhoods—but it bounces around with flashbacks and flashforwards within individual sequences.

[. . .  ]

Even so, The Assassination of Gianni Versace is a formidable piece of work, brilliant in its characterizations and harrowing in its depictions of the amorality of American culture's dark underside. . .
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:  http://reason.com/archives/2018/01/12/american-crime-story-takes-on-versaces-m







A short statement about Darren.
The New York Times wrote:
Your Week in Culture: Lana Del Rey, ‘Gianni Versace,’ the Murder of Malcolm X on Stage

Jan. 12, 2018

The Venezuelan actor Edgar Ramírez portrays a benevolent Versace; Penélope Cruz sweeps in as his sister and muse, Donatella, showing scant mercy to his grieving partner, played by Ricky Martin. And Darren Criss (“Glee”) coolly seethes — until he viciously erupts — as Cunanan. The nine episodes, volleying between the dazzling, sexed-up opulence of Versace’s existence and the grimy despair of Cunanan’s, are adapted from Maureen Orth’s 1999 book, “Vulgar Favors,” which examines the role that homophobia may have played in the hunt for the serial killer. KATHRYN SHATTUCK
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:  https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/12/arts/lana-del-rey-gianni-versace-malcolm-x-play.html




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Last edited by Poppy on Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:16 pm; edited 3 times in total


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DaisiesAndLilies

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Spoiler: It's a decent butt, Kev Cool


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Poppy

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haha!  Hi DaisiesAndLilies!   Hi there! :hello

Your new signature is very appropriate.  :happy face


(I'm not really looking forward to seeing Darren's butt  ) confused


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DaisiesAndLilies

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Coming up, there will be things I won't like that were in the book, so that's okay, Poppy.

I love the Dan Flavin fluorescent lighting in the promo photos. I also really like the photos from the New York Times profile. Completely different vibe from the over-saturated neon, but great anyway.


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I'm impressed that you read the book, DaisiesAndLilies.

I agree, I like the fluorescent lighting of the Versace photos.  The photos in the NYT profile were very nice!

This is an interesting edit.  The iris of Darren's eyes look darker, and have a different quality than the photos used in the NYT article.  In this photo, the iris looks almost opaque.



X

by Ryan Pfluger for The New York Times









americancrimestoryfx: It was the largest failed manhunt in US history. From creator Ryan Murphy, see the dark story behind The Assassination of Gianni Versace, 1/17 on FX. #ACSVersace


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From Darren Criss Army:


@DarrenCriss 4 days. #ACSVersace







@ACSFX Turn on your sound. Hear how it all began. #ACSVersace

via dcriss-archive







From dcriss-archive:


He is TV Editor for Paste Magazine. 










More pics:

I like the top photo but wished the photographer had airbrushed out the bags under his eyes (he probably has been filming a lot).    But they are very nice pics!





Darren Criss Photoshoot for the New York Times | Source

via dcriss-archive







Dascha Polanco is also in Versace as a detective.












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Hi DaisiesAndLilies! :hello





Premiere dates and networks for watching ACS Versace:




You can watch in Latin America on January 18 on Canal FX for Latin America.


We’ve compiled a list of ACS Versace premiere dates for various parts of the world.  (Times/providers may vary, check your local listings.)

No air dates announced for Australia or UK yet, sorry. 

We probably missed some, please let us know! We will update again within the next day or two as warranted.

via Darren Criss Army






Premiere date and viewing info for ACS Versace in Mexico/Latinoamerica

via Darren Criss Army










via dcriss-archive








In addition: 

United Kingdom

(no date) On BBC Two 

France
(no date) On Canal +




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Critics' Reviews of The Assassination of Gianni Versace:  American Crime Story








These reviews are from acsversace-news (via dcriss-archive).   The Newsday review was noted by Rotten Tomatoes.  The other three reviews (by Cleveland.com, the Las Vegas Review-Journal, and the Detroit Free Press) are not listed in either Metacritic or Rotten Tomatoes.



This critic compares Versace to season 1.  He seems to miss Versace's message about its characters and about the social environment of the 1990s.  He did like Darren's performance.
Cleveland.com wrote:

'American Crime Story' hits sophomore slump with 'Versace' (review)

January 13, 2018

Although the nine-part true-crime drama has much to recommend it, starting with the superb work of Darren Criss as serial killer Andrew Cunanan, . . . 

[. . . ]

Criss provides the most compelling reason to stick with these episodes, and even this stunning performance might not be enough . . .
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."   Source:  http://www.cleveland.com/tv-blog/index.ssf/2018/01/american_crime_story_hits_sophomore_slump_with_versace_review.html







This critic had an issue with the focus on the murderer and the violence, as well as the structure.   The critic seemed to miss what other critics noted, that Darren tried to humanize Cunanan (but not justify Cunanan's actions).   Season 1 is always going to be a tough act to follow.  The critic did compliment the performances of the actors, including Darren's performance.  I like the title of the article.  :amused
Newsday wrote:
'Assassination of Gianni Versace' review: Darren Criss gives an electrifying performance    [3/4 stars]

January 13, 2018

In an electrifying performance, Criss spins his character’s lies so deftly that the violence that invariably follows them is a blow to the solar plexus. When he smiles brightly, the psycho middle-distance stare also follows, and he then pulls out the gun from his waistband.

[. . . ]


There are many pleasures here, however, and they are entirely in the craftsmanship. There are some superb performances — Judith Light as the repressed widow of Miglin is stunning — and it’s hard to think of one that isn’t good. “Versace” gets the little things right. It’s the bigger picture that’s the problem.

BOTTOM LINE
Sorry, not as good as “O.J.,” but Criss turns in a dynamic performance in service of a desperately sad story.
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."   Source:  https://www.newsday.com/entertainment/tv/assassination-of-gianni-versace-review-1.16157797






A positive review.  haha.  "Best of all, there isn’t a Kardashian in sight."  (I liked David Schwimmer's performance in season 1.)   The critic is pretty funny.  He talks about the scenes that are campy (spoilers) and Ryan Murphy's contributions. 
Las Vegas Review-Journal wrote:
Ryan Murphy digs into another crime story with 'Versace'

January 13, 2018

“The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story” (10 p.m. Wednesday, FX) is inherently more interesting than its acclaimed predecessor, “The People vs. O.J. Simpson.”

[. . . ]

The real star, though, is “Glee’s” Darren Criss, who threatens to turn the spree-killing Cunanan into a camp icon.

[. . . ]

Keep in mind, the series may be written by Tom Rob Smith (the miniseries “London Spy”), based on the controversial book “Vulgar Favors” by Maureen Orth, but it’s overseen by Ryan Murphy of “American Horror Story,” “Glee” and “Nip/Tuck” fame. Ball gags and bondage gear are the only types of restraint he’s ever shown.

As charming liars go, Criss’ Cunanan falls somewhere between those of “Catch Me If You Can” and “The Talented Mr. Ripley.”

[. . . ]

I’m waiting for Benj Pasek and Justin Paul to set that to a foot-stomping beat for “Cunanan: The Musical.”
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:   https://www.reviewjournal.com/entertainment/entertainment-columns/christopher-lawrence/ryan-murphy-digs-into-another-crime-story-with-versace/








Not a full review, but a brief mention.  Also from acsversace-news (via dcriss-archive):

Detroit Free Press wrote:
TV highlights for the week of Jan. 14-20

January 13, 2018


WEDNESDAY


After a mesmerizing look back at the O.J. Simpson murder case, anthology series “American Crime Story” from prolific producer Ryan Murphy turns its attention to the 1997 murder of fashion icon Gianni Versace (Edgar Ramirez). Darren Criss (“Glee”) delivers an astonishing performance as troubled spree-killer Andrew Cunanan, whose path of destruction landed him on the FBI’s 10 Most Wanted List even before he shot Versace on the steps outside his Miami Beach mansion. The cast also features Penélope Cruz and Ricky Martin. 10 p.m., FX.
Source:  https://www.freep.com/story/entertainment/television/2018/01/13/tv-highlights-week-jan-jan/109372172/





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From Darren Criss Army:



Nice interview with San Francisco Chronicle.  I can see little Darren calling Peter Coyote, a movie star.  What a confident kid, who at 7 years old was committed to acting.  I also can see Darren pretending to fall to lighten the mood on the Versace set.  So nice of him to be supportive of the cast and crew on set. 
San Francisco Chronicle wrote:
For ‘Versace’ actor Darren Criss, SF childhood still shines brightly

January 13, 2018

Darren Criss is pleasant and dutiful during an interview on a recent Thursday afternoon, answering questions about his role as serial killer Andrew Cunanan in the new FX miniseries “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story.”

But when the subject shifts to his childhood in San Francisco, the actor is downright joyous.

Criss happily remembers stories that have been buried for a while, including the time he called San Francisco actor Peter Coyote, whose son was a classmate of Criss’ brother, for advice about getting into acting. Criss was 7 years old.

“The synapses in my brain are suddenly awakening,” Criss says, talking faster. “I remember really, really nervously looking at the school roster, getting the number and going into the closet and shaking nervously, and saying, ‘Hi, is Mr. Coyote there?’ For a child to be talking to an adult on a level other than, ‘Can so-and-so come over to play video games?’ it was a nerve-racking experience.”

Criss says Coyote gave him a vote of confidence, and talked to him about enrolling in the Young Conservatory program at the American Conservatory Theater. Criss flourished there, and appeared in the musicals “Fanny” and “Do I Hear a Waltz” with 42nd Street Moon when he was 10.

The St. Ignatius College Prep graduate went on to University of Michigan, where he co-created “A Very Potter Musical” in 2009. It became a YouTube hit, and he has since glided effortlessly between film and stage, performing as openly gay singer Blaine on television’s “Glee” between 2010 and 2015, and in a “Hedwig and the Angry Inch” revival that started at San Francisco’s Golden Gate Theatre in 2016.

But his most challenging performance — maybe anyone’s most challenging TV performance this year — is as Cunanan, the designer-obsessed serial killer in “The Assassination of Gianni Versace.”

[. . .]


Speaking by phone from his Los Angeles home last week, Criss is reserved about his performance. While most reviewers have already seen all eight episodes, Criss had only seen four — and binged those the night before.

“It’s hard to watch anything you do objectively,” Criss says, when asked for his first impressions. “That sounds so unenthusiastic, but I promise you it’s not. I’m thrilled with how a lot of things turned out.”

One thing Criss insists is that he didn’t follow the dark character — there are scenes of physical and emotional torture by Cunanan, followed by an alarming lack of empathy — into the abyss.

On the worst days, Criss says, he would execute a pratfall down a stairway on set or provide other blooper reel material to lighten the mood. And he insists that while the victims of Cunanan both living and dead weighed on his mind, the most violent scenes were not as harrowing to perform as they look on screen.

“You have to remember that, (A) of course, it’s fake, (B) there’s not this creepy music looming in the background,” Criss says. “And there are 30 or 40 people around you who you can crack jokes with and grab a tea with, and give you the sort of necessary levity.”

Levity seems to be Criss’ default position, especially after the questions about Cunanan end and the San Francisco conversation begins again.

[. .  .]


And that San Francisco childhood will always be with Criss, as long as the synapses are still firing. Asked if he remembers co-starring in “Fanny” when he was 10 years old, he provides a couple of warm stories, then sings a few bars from his 20-year-old performance. (“Be kind to your parents/ Though they don’t deserve it …”)

“ACT is such a huge part of my life, and I’m so forever grateful for them existing,” Criss says. “If I grew up in any other city in any other circumstance, I don’t know if I really would have had the support system in place to make this dream a reality.”


Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."   Source:  http://www.sfchronicle.com/performance/article/For-Versace-actor-Darren-Criss-SF-12497046.php








@DarrenCriss 3 days. #ACSVersace

via Darren Criss Army







ACS Versace premieres Saturday January 20 in the Philippines.


Link to article: https://t.co/rxrW0hW0DB

via Darren Criss Army






For those interested in seeing other cast members on the various talk shows.  :happy face

Darren Criss Army wrote:

UPDATED: ACS Versace main cast TV appearances




This will probably be our last update for this week’s appearances, any others we will just announce separately.



via Darren Criss Army








From dcriss-archive:



acsversace-news:
   The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story will air in a 90 minute block in the US, and a 70 minute block in Canada on January 17, 2018. FX US Schedule / FX Canada Schedule













Another photo from New York Times.  :happy face

ryanpfluger: One more of @darrencriss for @nytimes in print today.








The NYT interview.

michaelschulman: My Sunday Styles profile of #darrencriss.











RustyRueff: Great @nytimesarts article on @ACTSanFrancisco alum @DarrenCriss and his new @ACSFX Series starting this week on @FXNetworks.






He is with San Francisco Chronicle.

Link





She is with Glamour.










She is with Page Six




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Critics' Reviews of The Assassination of Gianni Versace:  American Crime Story



These two reviews are not noted yet by Metacritic or Rotten Tomatoes.


From Darren Criss Army:

Madison wrote:
Review: Gianni Versace gets stylish attention in new miniseries

January 14, 2018

[Darren Criss as Andrew Cunanan] doesn’t overdo any of the guises. He’s very good kissing up to the powerful; he’s able to blend in when he’s trying to hide from authorities. And while Murphy and other directors aren’t afraid to show his kinkier side, it is strange that moments seem like they’re from “American Horror Story,” not “American Crime Story.”

[. . .]

Because it’s so great at reclaiming an era we almost forgot, “The Assassination of Gianni Versace” easily stands as first must-see offering of 2018. It checks all the boxes needed for the perfect winter miniseries and there’s not an inch of it that isn’t stylish. 
Source:  http://host.madison.com/entertainment/television/review-gianni-versace-gets-stylish-attention-in-new-miniseries/article_90b2451c-59ff-51ba-8908-a1957bbd9469.html





From dcriss-archive:


This critic seems to have only viewed Episode 1 of the series.
Los Angeles Blade wrote:
“Assassination of Gianni Versace” investigates murder and homophobia

January 14, 2018

With the first installment of “The Assassination of Gianni Versace,” Murphy and writer Tom Rob Smith waste no time in addressing that question.  After an elegantly orchestrated opening sequence depicting the events of that July morning – in which the activities of both Versace and Cunanan are intercut until they come together for their fatal meeting – the show immediately begins to explore a subtle but pervasive homophobic slant.

[. . .  ]

Joining Ramirez, Cruz, and Martin to round out the principal cast is Darren Criss as Cunanan.  It’s a challenging role, for many reasons – not the least of which is the fact that much of what we see of him is necessarily based on speculation.  In the first episode, what comes through is a portrait of a deeply, almost painfully insecure young man, hiding behind blatantly fabricated fantasies to create an image of himself to sell to those around him.  What does not come through – at least not yet – is his attractiveness and appeal.  Criss is a handsome actor, but as Cunanan he seems decidedly ordinary; this is not a bad thing, by any means, but to convince us of this killer’s ability to charm his way into the lives of so many men he must also show us some of Cunanan’s charisma.  Hopefully, as the series progresses, more of this will be revealed.

[. . . ]

With the previous season’s examination of the O.J. case, Murphy and his creative team were shrewd enough to realize that what made the story important was not the sensational details of the murder and trial, but rather the underlying current of racism which informed every aspect of the way events unfolded.  With their handling of the Cunanan story, it is obvious that they have brought that same understanding to the proceedings – and as before, the way their observations about the social biases within their story’s setting provides a pointed reflection of those that linger in our own time.

“The Assassination of Gianni Versace” may be a tale of American crime, but it’s also a tale of American homophobia.
Source:  http://www.losangelesblade.com/2018/01/14/assassination-gianni-versace-investigates-murder-homophobia/





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Critics' Reviews of The Assassination of Gianni Versace:  American Crime Story




A bunch of more reviews. :happy face


So for the first time, I see two reviews that are  mildly critical of Darren's performance.  When you think about it, it's been amazing that there  has been very uniform consensus among screeners' tweets and media reviews until today, about how wonderful is Darren's performance in Versace!   Those who are older Darren fans may remember the show called Siskel & Ebert where two respected film critics rarely agreed on whether any given film was to be recommended.  There always is room for various opinions. 

One thing I would note is that while one of these two critics found Darren's performance inconsistent (he also noted that the reverse chronology structure would make Cunanan as a character harder for Darren to play), the other critic was unhappy that Darren played Cunanan with too much regularity over the course of the episodes.  (haha.  So too inconsistent, or too consistent?  scratch :amused )





From acsversace-news (via dcriss-archive):



I wouldn't say that Ryan "sidelined" the big names in the Versace series, just because they are big stars.  It's a matter who was the focus of the narrative.  But I do admire Ryan's commitment to giving opportunities to actors who he sees great promise in, but who have not yet been given the chance to really show the degree of their talent.  Thank you Ryan Murphy!  What's also interesting is that this article talks about how some of the actors in Versace are not eligible for Emmy consideration "because they do not appear in five percent of the total runtime of the season, a prerequisite for the Best Movie/Limited Supporting Acting categories."  I never  knew this.
Gold Derby wrote:‘The Assassination of Gianni Versace’ preview: Ryan Murphy sidelines big names for rising stars

January 15, 2018

Criss also got his big break acting in television under Murphy, on “Glee,” later writing a song for its series finale, earning the musical its sole Emmy nomination for Best Original Music and Lyrics. A compulsive liar, charming manipulator and homicidal psychopath, Cunanan is the role of a lifetime and Criss is perfect casting, down to his half-Filipino background.
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:  http://www.goldderby.com/article/2018/the-assassination-of-gianni-versace-preview-ryan-murphy-darren-criss-news/







The Globe and Mail wrote:
The Assassination of Gianni Versace is a disturbing and constantly shifting true-crime thriller

January 15, 2018

As such, the drama, which has some stunning visual opulence, has multiple themes and threads. It can be an agonizing, thrilling and disturbing thriller to watch.

[. . . ]

As Murphy has done before, he draws great performances from actors who might be considered lightweights. Actor and singer Criss, best known as the dreamboat Blaine Anderson on Glee, is remarkable as Cunanan, the preppie who has a deeply exaggerated self-importance and hides a murderer's heart under his smiling, happy-to-meet-you surface.

[. . .]

Like The People v. O.J. Simpson and Feud: Bette and Joan, this new work from Murphy sets out not to revise history but to bring a fresh perspective to the recent past. . . Here, he's laying bare the agonies of the closeted, hidden life that so many gay men endured as recently as the 1990s.

 . . . [Ryan Murphy states,] "We're not glamorizing the Cunanan story, and we never want to do that. We deal with everybody who was affected, not just the people who were killed, but also the relatives, the siblings. What he did was very, very destructive, and the reason why he did it, I think, was the homophobia of the day. It still persists and that is something really topical."
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:   https://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/television/the-assassination-of-gianni-versace-is-a-disturbing-and-constantly-shifting-true-crime-thriller/article37604886/





Warning:  Spoilers!
Boston Edge Media Network wrote:
Homophobia Examined in 'The Assassination of Gianni Versace' Where Darren Criss Shines

Jan. 15, 2018

Like first season of "ACS," "Versace" has an incredible star-studded cast, including brilliant performances from its main crew: Edgar Ramirez as the titular designer, Penelope Cruz as his sister Donatella, Ricky Martin as his partner Antonio D'Amico and Darren Criss as Cunanan.

. . . the second "ACS" installment is "The Darren Criss Show." But that's not a bad thing!  Criss, who is on screen about 70% of the time, is terrifyingly electrifying, totally allowing himself to be consumed by his character.

The season is a compelling portrait of a serial killer and it's success rests mostly on Criss's shoulders, who proves himself here with a marvelous breakout performance as the deranged albeit very charming Cunanan.

. . .  the show is also gloriously gay. From its opening moments (there's an ode to "Moonlight" in the first 5 minutes of the first episode), the show's biggest theme is what it was like to be gay in the 90s; an exploration of the dangers of the closet.

Many of Cunanan's experiences in the gay community are depicted, including his struggle with being accepted by other gay men and his troubles with finding true love and meaningful connections. In one daring scene in the latter part of the season, Cunanan is bluntly told that he's not desirable by men because he's Asian. (Like Criss, Cunanan was half Filipino).

Above all else, "Versace" is about fitting in and finding acceptance among friends, family and society. For Cunanan, doing so was difficult even amongst his own community. As Murphy recently explained, his interactions in the gay community played a role in his killings.

[. . . ]

Despite some its shortcomings, "Versace" is still a thoroughly entertaining and exciting season of TV that gives Criss an opportunity prove he's come a long way since his "Glee" days. It's hard to tell how the second season of "ACS" will resonate with viewers; the fact that it's so unashamedly gay may turn off some people (but who really cares about that). "Versace" will unlikely capture the same kind of spark "The People v. O.J. Simpson" did two years ago, but the new installment in Murphy's anthology series has his thumbprint on it. With stunning production value and fabulous performances from everyone involved, "Versace" has something to say and it is essential television.
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:     https://boston.edgemedianetwork.com/entertainment/television/254653/homophobia_examined_in_the_assassination_of_gianni_versace_where_darren_criss_shines







Miami New Times wrote:
American Crime Story's Versace Doesn’t Actually Have Much Versace — and That's Great

January 15, 2018

Criss’ portrayal of Cunanan, a gay man whose outward confidence and taste for the finer things belies a deep well of insecurity, is the highlight of the show. This is a guy who can make eating a bowl of Fruit Loops look menacing. The gripping performance is enhanced by the show’s narrative structure, a risky gambit that pays off: The season moves backward in time, each episode taking place just before the events of the previous week’s.

Versace is not camp; it’s a respectful and often deeply moving depiction of the struggle for acceptance, both from the wider world and from oneself.

Again, it’s Criss who is the main draw. . . he holds the viewer tight in his grip. Cunanan exerts control over his victims calmly, which is so much scarier than bluster, like your mom going really quiet when you know you’re in trouble. He’s got a Trumpian swag, an unearned confidence in his ability to sell himself to anyone. Yet Criss never lets us forget his desperation and shame, the self-loathing just beneath the surface of the collegiate bravado. You can just make out the panic behind his eyes.

Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:    http://www.miaminewtimes.com/film/the-assassination-of-gianni-versace-focuses-on-andrew-cunanan-the-man-behind-the-crime-9988315




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From Darren Criss Army:



Darren Criss Army wrote:

UPDATED: ACS Versace premiere schedule


NOTE: The schedule for Latinoamerica has been posted separately and has not changed.

We do not have the details for Bulgaria & Portugal yet.










@ACSFX The Emmy-award winning limited series from Ryan Murphy returns. #ACSVersace








@ACSFX Everyone would know what he did. The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story premieres in TWO DAYS on FX. #ACSVersace

via Darren Criss Army








From dcriss-archive:



Darren will be a guest on “Andy Cohen Live” on SiriusXM Wednesday 17th, 2018 10:00am EST | Source







Darren Criss Chats American Crime Story “Versace” on Good Morning America - Full Interview (January 15th, 2018) | Source














[HQ] Darren Criss on ‘Good Morning America,’ Monday, January 15, 2017 | Source












[HQ] In Portrait: Darren Criss Is A Triple Threat | Source





Article by Maureen Orth
Vanity Fair wrote:
Darren Criss on Playing Andrew Cunanan In The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story

January 15, 2018


In 1997, I read a newspaper article about a 27-year-old gay man from a posh private school in La Jolla, California, who was on the lam, wanted for four murders in three states. Vanity Fairassigned me to profile him, and the issue with my story in it was almost at the printer when news broke that Andrew Cunanan, the man I’d been tracking, had gunned down the fashion designer Gianni Versace on the steps of his Miami Beach mansion. Suddenly, Cunanan—and the spectacularly failed manhunt for him, which ended with his suicide eight days after Versace’s murder—was a national obsession, and I re-wrote my article, then expanded it into a book, Vulgar Favors: The Assassination of Gianni Versace. Both are now, in turn, the basis of Ryan Murphy’s The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, set to premiere on FX on January 17.

Cunanan, who was driven to his murderous deeds by the desire for fame and revenge, would have relished being portrayed by Darren Criss, who shares his striking good looks, his outgoing charm, and his half-Filipino heritage. But the similarities end there, obviously, and Criss is empathetic enough to understand that, for all its juicy details, the Versace saga is an epic story of real-life suffering. “My heart is really sensitive to the people who experienced something so horrible that I’m trying to breathe life into,” says Criss, 30, who grew up in the Bay Area and previously worked with Murphy on Glee and American Horror Story series will be told in reverse, tracing Cunanan’s path backward from the Versace murder, through his previous killings, all the way to his childhood growing up as the gifted and spoiled son of an accused-embezzler father and a victimized, mentally ill mother. Versace’s lush life contrasts with Cunanan’s descent into drugs, and his double life in the gay demimonde and in the closeted upper class.

Cunanan, Criss says, was “someone who had the potential to do so much more. How does that person become synonymous with something so sad, violent, or scary?” He adds, “It’s a story about the have and have-not—the ultimate creator and the ultimate destroyer.”
Please visit the site to give the article a number of "clicks."  Source:  https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2018/01/darren-criss-gianni-versace-fear-box





He is with TheRinger.com






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