While the exact details of FX's American Horror Story: Coven remain mysterious, the run-up to the series' premiere continues to be tantalizing. The show's creator, Ryan Murphy (The New Normal), has dropped a number of fascinating hints as to the show's new direction and has been assembling an undeniably compelling cast to carry it forward.
Murphy proved his ability to recruit high-profile talent when American Horror Story signed Gabourey Sidibe (Precious), and it looks as if that trend continues unabated this week. The most recent additions to the series' ensemble include another Academy Award nominee in Angela Bassett (Olympus Has Fallen) and veteran actress Patti LuPone (Parker).
TV Line reports that Bassett and LuPone have joined American Horror Story: Coven for an unknown number of episodes. They enter a cast that includes the previously-mentioned Sidibe and Kathy Bates (Titanic), as well as returning players Jessica Lange (The Vow), Lily Rabe (All Good Things), Sarah Paulson (New Year's Eve), and Evan Peters (Kick-Ass).
Bassett was nominated for an Oscar for her performance in What's Love Got to Do With It in 1994 – a role that also netted her a Golden Globe and a great deal of critical accolades. Since then, she has been a consistently impressive performer in a wide variety of films and television series. Her screen presence has remained strong, even in otherwise-dire productions such as Supernova and Green Lantern.
LuPone is known best as a Broadway powerhouse, having won multiple Tony Awards in a career that's spanned over 30 years. She has appeared on both the small and silver screens often, and is perhaps most recognizable as Libby Thacher from the early-1990s drama Life Goes On. Her most recent film and television performances include Parker, 30 Rock, and Ugly Betty. As a veteran of several productions of Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, LuPone is no stranger to the grotesque.
So far, American Horror Story: Coven's casting has held up the assertion that the new season will be more female-centric than previous outings. The assemblage of talent is undeniable, but one has to wonder if the increasingly-crowded ensemble will push some of the actors to the sidelines. Of course, a full season of television will allow plenty of opportunities for every one of these award-winners to shine.
American Horror Story: Coven will cast its spell on FX in the fall of 2013 .
Source: TV Line