Five Things You Didn’t Know about American Horror Story Creator Ryan Murphy

4th Annual Critics' Choice Television Awards - Critics' Choice LOUIS XIII Genius Award

You may know Ryan Murphy from his earlier work on Popular and Nip Tuck. Or you may know him as one of the three very, very distinctive voices behind Glee. Or maybe you know him as the somewhat twisted and eccentric creator behind American Horror Story. No matter how you know Ryan Murphy’s work, you know it. He is one of the most sought after writers, directors, and producers in Hollywood today. His work has landed him countless Emmy nominations (This year alone, American Horror Story: Coven received 17 nominations, while The Normal Heart netted 16), and even when his television shows or films aren’t getting awards recognition, they’re getting mentioned for their ambition, creativity, or even controversial material. However, even though it may seem like everything about Ryan Murphy is out there in the public eye, being discussed almost every day, there are some facts about his life that are a little less known. Here are five things you (probably) didn’t know about Ryan Murphy.

He was a journalist.

Before he got into the television and film industry, Murphy worked as a journalist for many highly regarded publications. Murphy wrote for The Miami Herald, The Los Angeles Times, New York Daily News, Knoxville News Sentinel, and even Entertainment Weekly. Murphy’s father also did work in the field of journalism as a circulation director for the newspaper industry in Indianapolis, where Murphy grew up.

His mother was a beauty queen.

While Murphy’s father worked in the newspaper industry, Murphy’s mother also was a working writer, who published five books and worked for 20 years in communications before retirement. However, before her other work and her writing, Murphy’s mother was apparently a beauty pageant star, but she stopped competing when she had children. Murphy himself has described her as a “beauty queen who left it all to stay at home and take care of her two sons.”

Steven Spielberg purchased one of his first scripts.

One of the reasons why Ryan Murphy stopped working in journalism was to focus on his scriptwriting in the late 1990s. Well, that decision to work hard and write for himself ending up paying off when Steven Spielberg bought one of Murphy’s scripts, entitled Why Can’t I Be Audrey Hepburn? Although reportedly nothing was done with the script, when you have one of the biggest directors in all of Hollywood purchasing something you wrote, you’re pretty much guaranteed a way into the industry.

He was raised Catholic and reportedly still attends church.

As an openly gay man, Ryan Murphy has been very critical of the Catholic Church’s view towards gay marriage in pretty much all of his projects. Yet despite his objections to the Church’s stance on the very topical issue, Murphy, who was raised Catholic by his Irish family, reportedly still goes to church services on Sunday. To anyone who has seen Murphy’s work and how he has portrayed Catholics, this news must be incredibly surprising (I know I was shocked).

He’s a father.

Ryan Murphy married his husband, photographer David Miller, in 2012, and not long at all after their pair’s wedding day, the couple welcomed their first child, a son, named Logan Phineas Miller, via a surrogate mother. Murphy has stated in the past that his marriage to Miller and their decision to have a child together is part of what inspired his NBC television show The New Normal, which was cancelled after only one season back in 2013.

Photo by John Sciulli/Getty Images for LOUIS XIII

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