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Ryan Murphy returns to horror with new Netflix show staring Naomi Watts and Bobby Cannavale

Naomi Watts and Bobby Cannavale
(Image credit: Gaumont/Disney/Marvel)

Ryan Murphy has a new Netflix series in the works, and it's set to star Naomi Watts and Bobby Cannavale.

Though there's been no official comment, Deadline indicates that the series will see Watts and Cannavale as a married couple who move into their ideal home, but begin receiving threatening letters from someone calling themselves 'The Watcher.'

While this sounds stranger than fiction, it's actually based on a true story. A family bought a home in New Jersey, and soon started receiving correspondence from The Watcher, who had an intense interest in the house and seemed to be, well, watching them very closely. The couple eventually tried to sell the house, but couldn't, so rented it out instead. The new tenant also received a threatening letter from The Watcher, and the house has since been sold. The Watcher has never been found. You can check out a write up of the story on The Cut, but we don't recommend reading it before bed.

Murphy will executive produce the series alongside Ian Brennan, Eric Newman, Bryan Unkeless, Henry Joost, and Ariel Schulman. Deadline note that the series will be reminiscent of the first series of American Horror Story, and that Netflix won "a ferocious bidding battle" including six studios in December 2018 for the rights to both The Cut article and the rights of the homeowners. Per Deadline, the deal is seven figures, and was originally for a film directed by Joost and Schulman. The series will reportedly begin filming this fall.

Murphy has been busy at Netflix, with The Prom, Halston, and Ratched all released recently. His other work for Netflix includes The Boys in the Band and Hollywood, and Murphy is probably best known for his work as co-creator of Glee with Brennan and Brad Falchuk, and as co-creator of American Horror Story with Falchuk. Brennan co-created The Politician, Hollywood, and the upcoming Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, as well as The Watcher, with Murphy – and has written and executive produced all of Murphy's series for Netflix so far.

Watts and Cannavale, meanwhile, have also worked together on the upcoming Once Upon a Time in Staten Island.  

There's no release date for The Watcher just yet, but in the meantime, check out the best Netflix shows to stream now.

I'm an experienced online writer with articles published on film, TV, and pop culture. I am currently working at GamesRadar+ as a freelance Entertainment Reporter. I previously worked on the Disney team and freelanced on CBeebies magazine with Immediate Media.