Portraying the titular designer on FX’s Assassination of Gianni Versace: American Crime Story, Edgar Ramirez stitched together a world of color, exuberance and vitality to celebrate the fashion legend. Ramirez, now nominated for an Emmy for outstanding supporting actor in a limited series or movie, related the show’s success to shared experiences with complicated families.
“Family relationships are the most complex and the most beautiful because many times you hurt people out of love. You hurt people because we want to help them,” said Ramirez.
As a former journalist, the actor told The Hollywood Reporter that he used his investigative skills to approach the historical context of the storyline and dig deeper into his character.
“For me, it was very important to understand what was going on in the world, in the world of fashion,” Ramirez said. “Gianni [Versace] came into the ’90s and mixed the sexuality of the ’70s and all the money from the ’80s. He became the designer the world needed.”
Ramirez also discussed the role’s dramatic transformation that required the actor to not only wear a prosthetic hairline, but also gain some extra weight. “I think that the closer you are to the character, the more powerful you feel. I don’t have a problem with physical transformation if it’s what is required to really get under the skin of the character. There are certain things that you really need to feel [the] body [of a character.]”
The actor said that filming the murder scene was haunting since he could feel the energy of Versace’s love Antonio, played by fellow Emmy nominee Ricky Martin, on set. “Of course I couldn’t open my eyes to see it, but I felt it and that feeling is very vivid to me still. Ricky didn’t say anything, he gave it all out.”
Watch the video above to hear Ramirez discuss the culture that Ryan Murphy created, why he believes viewers will be seeing more of Ricky Martin and more.