Michael Chiklis has joined the cast of American Horror Story: Freak Show. Chiklis surprised Horror Story fans by joining the cast on stage during Friday's PaleyFest panel.
"[This is] somebody who I have loved for many, many years and courted for many, many years and we finally found the right role for him," executive producer Ryan Murphy said before the actor came out on stage. "He's playing [Evan Peters'] father. He will be Kathy Bates' ex-husband. He is an amazing Emmy-winning actor."
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Chiklis' casting marks a return for The Shield alum to FX. "I can't think of a better way to come back to my home network then to join this magnificent cast," Chiklis said. "It's going to be creepy and we're going to scare you. I'm ready and I'm up for it whatever comes my way."
"Get ready," new co-star Sarah Paulson quickly interjected. "Strap in."
The upcoming fourth season of the anthology series will be set in 1950s Florida, following the varied and likely horrifying troupe that make up a Freak Show. As previously announced, Jessica Lange will play a German ex-pat who manages said freak show, one of the last in the U.S. "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."
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Murphy also announced that every cast member on the stage Friday night would come back in some capacity. It was previously announced that Bates, Peters, Paulson, Angela Bassett and Frances Conroy will play performers, but they were also joined onstage by Denis O'Hare, Emma Roberts, Gabourey Sidibe and Jamie Brewer. Additionally, he said there would likely be other returning faces from the first few seasons. "Once you're on, you're on," Murphy said.
American Horror Story: Freak Show will premiere this fall on FX. Are you excited about Chiklis' casting?