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Gianni Versace - An American Crime Story

Nicole Campisano (January 03, 2018)
FX premieres “The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story” January 17th. The miniseries revolves around the murder of the Italian fashion designer Gianni Versace starring Edgar Ramirez as Versace, Penelope Cruz as his sister Donatella and Ricky Martin as Versace's partner.

FX’s second season of American Crime Story will start this January chronicling the murder of Gianni Versace based on Maureen Orth's book Vulgar Favors: Andrew Cunanan, Gianni Versace, and the Largest Failed Manhunt in U. S. History.  Versace was murdered July 15, 1997 in Miami when he was 50 years old by the serial killer Andrew Cunanan played by Darren Criss. 

Gianni Versace

The Italian fashion designer was the founder of the international fashion house, Versace.  Born in Reggio Calabria, Gianni worked for his mother who was a dress maker, and eventually moved to Milan to work in fashion design when he was 26.

Versace went on to create an empire and was one of the most notable fashion designers in the 80s and 90s.  The brand represented glamour and attracted countless celebrity clients.  Although Versace became synonymous with luxury and extravagance, the designer was known to be extremely humble and hardworking dedicating all of his time to his job and family.

Uncovering the Mystery

This series will explore what lead to Versace’s death through the mind of the murderer, Cunanan.  On the morning of his death, Gianni was standing in front of his Miami Beach mansion when he was shot in the back of the head. He was Cunanan’s fifth victim and today, there is still no clear reason why he was killed, although there are various theories.

Versace was openly gay, as were most of Cunanan’s victims.  Many believe that homophobia played a big part in his murder.  It is unknown whether Versace had ever met Cunanan who was extremely jealous of others’ successes.  Orth, making sense of the killer’s motive, explains that "he was willing to kill for fame. He wanted to be everything Versace was, but he wasn't willing to work for it.”

The purpose of American Crime Story is to understand why the murder took place, rather than to sensationalize a senseless killing.  The executive producer, Ryan Murphy, justifies that they are “trying to understand the psychology of someone who would be driven to do those deeds,” instead of taking “the killer of the week approach.”

The Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story will debut on FX at 10 pm ET on January 17.

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