Scream Queen

Denis O’Hare on channeling the great Elizabeth Taylor for American Horror Story: Hotel

American Horror Story is no stranger to star-studded casts. The FX show is in it’s fifth season and is currently headlined by Lady Gaga, Angela Bassett and the Emmy-award winning Kathy Bates. Yet, in a made-for-TV twist, it’s another leading lady that’s dominating headlines — Elizabeth Taylor. Well, it’s actually Denis O’Hare playing a man inspired by the late Elizabeth Taylor, but there’s no need to get technical.

Liz Taylor is equal parts Cleopatra and cocktail waitress, with a depth that’s unmatched by many of her female counterparts, a combination that O’Hare says is purposeful. “I said early on that she’s not shallow, she’s not stupid, she’s not vain, she’s not mean. She is intelligent,” said O’Hare in an interview with The Daily Beast about his role. “When she’s sitting at the front desk I don’t want her reading magazines. She’s reading James Joyce and Proust in French and then Meditations of Marcus Aurelius and The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire,” he said.  But ironically, there is one — dare we say — unsurprising effect of all that glorious chiffon and eye makeup: Vanity. “I will say that once I start putting on women’s clothes I get very vain,” said O’Hare. “I’m like, “Does my butt look good in this? What is this doing for my line?” he said. Welcome to the sisterhood.

Read the full interview at The Daily Beast.


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