Ryan Murphy on the Making of 'Glee': "There Was a Lot of Homophobic Fear About This Show"

The new podcast, 'And That's What You REALLY Missed,' takes you behind the scenes of the Fox musical series.

Calling all Gleeks!

It's Spooky Season so just as you are sure to see some jack-o'-lanterns on your street, you will probably see some Ryan Murphy productions on your TV screens — and that is especially true this year.

Murphy's latest Netflix projects, Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story and The Watcher, have been gigantic hits for the streamer, and the new season of American Horror Story, AHS: NYC, is currently scaring up thrills across the '80s gay scene on FX and Hulu.

As if that wasn't enough, the prolific producer is also the guest on the premiere episode of And That's What You REALLY Missed, a podcast hosted by original Glee cast members Kevin McHale (Artie Abrams) and Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina Cohen-Chang) where they attempt to re-watch all six seasons of the Fox musical series.

"I've never really talked about Glee or the making of Glee... I'm just going to talk about all of it," said Murphy when introduced on the podcast. "This is going to be like a really intense therapy session."

Murphy recalls that after he signed a first-look deal at Fox he was "trying to figure out" a musical series to develop, when he was handed a script at the gym:

"Like serendipity, I went to the gym and I was in a towel and a guy went up and handed me a script and he said, 'I had a feeling you were in show choir, am I right?' And I was like 'Yeah.'"

In his conversation with McHale and Ushkowitz, Murphy reveals that even though Glee might have been aimed at teens, and was as bright and colorful as a blue slushie, the original version presented to him was a much darker comedy:

“Mr. Schue, I believe, was a crystal meth addict in Ian [Brennan]’s script. It was sort of like Election, but like the NC-17 version of show choir with a weird protagonist who was unraveling," Murphy said, elaborating on the process of making the script more lighthearted and optimistic. 

In the interview, The Normal Heart director also talked about how in Hollywood "there was a lot of homophobic fear about this show," and how audiences were left confused after the disastrous first screening of the Glee pilot. Murphy also later revealed that the role of Mr. Schue, played by Matthew Morrison, was initially written with Justin Timberlake in mind.

“I’ve never really talked about this, that pilot was written for Justin Timberlake. Mr. Schue was written for Justin," he divulged, leaving the episode on a cliffhanger. For more behind-the-scenes tea, check out the episode of And That's What You REALLY Missed with the first part of Murphy's interview below.

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