Penélope Cruz Is Donatella Versace on FX's Versace: American Crime Story

Production on the new season of Ryan Murphy's anthology is set to begin in April

By Chris Harnick Mar 20, 2017 5:15 PMTags
Penelope Cruz, Donatella VersaceGetty Images

Penélope Cruz is Donatella Versace. E! News has confirmed the Oscar winner will play the key role in Versace: American Crime Story, the third installment of Ryan Murphy's American Crime Story anthology series on FX.

Production on the third season is set to begin in April and air in 2018. Katrina: American Crime Story will be the second season following the hit first season The People v. O.J. Simpson. Murphy, Nina Jacobson and Brad Simpson are executive producers on Versace: American Crime Story.

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Cruz won the Oscar for Vicky Cristina Barcelona in 2009. Escobar and Murder of the Orient Express are her latest film projects. Her TV work has been limited. She appeared in Série rose and Framed in the 1990s and voiced a character on Sesame Street in 2013-2014.

Murphy's American Crime Story franchise has attracted a bevy of A-list talent. The first season had John Travolta, Cuba Gooding Jr., Sarah Paulson, David Schwimmer, Sterling K. Brown and Connie Britton among its cast. Season two, which has not begun filming yet and will tell the story of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath in New Orleans, has Annette Bening and Matthew Broderick already on board.

Both Lady Gaga and Paulson were rumored to be up for the role of Donatella Versace, but Murphy hinted it would be played by an Oscar winner. Season three of American Crime Story is based on the book Vulgar Favors by Maureen Orth. The series will chronicle the murder of Gianni Versace by Andrew Cunanan in 1997.

Look for more casting announcements as production gets into gear.