Neil Patrick Harris can do it all. He can sing, dance, act, and make fun of himself in numerous ways. One thing Harris refrained from doing is the seemingly impossible — saying no to multiple show runner Ryan Murphy.
Murphy, the man behind successful shows like Glee, Nip/Tuck, and American Horror Story, is famous for using the same actors in a lot of his projects. Well, according to Harris, he was approached very early on to play a large part in season one of American Horror Story, but decided against it. Before you go on accusing Harris of being nuts about passing up on the project, he did have a legitimate reason.
Harris opened up about turning Ryan Murphy down in an interview with Entertainment Weekly. At the time, Harris and then boyfriend David Burtka turned down the option to play two very familiar roles for Murphy’s new show.
The reason for turning American Horror Story down has to do with the famous cameo in the 2011 film A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas.
“We had just played ourselves as a couple not getting along, and I thought, ‘It just seems weird to do that twice, as individual actors to play a couple that hate each other twice. So I said ‘no,’ that we shouldn’t do it.”
Before Neil gave the reason why they turned down the roles, he went on to explain the characters in some detail, which as it turns out, managed to make a big part of the first season of the breakout hit FX series.
“The idea was that we would be a gay couple, that, as it turns out, were murdered in this house and then our ghosts are around for the thing. It seemed cool. Loved Ryan [Murphy], loved the idea of a horror anthology show.”
The roles on American Horror Story were passed on to Zachary Quinto and Teddy Sears.
We’re sure Neil Patrick Harris wasn’t really kicking himself. After all, he was on a hit show of his own, CBS’ How I Met Your Mother. That show alone established the actor as playing one of the best alpha male characters on television, and resurrected his career. If Harris would have said yes to Ryan Murphy, he probably wouldn’t of had the time to commit to several other seasons like the other actors did after Season 1.
After the first season, Quinto was featured in the second season, American Horror Story: Asylum. As for Teddy Sears, he moved on to Showtime’s Masters of Sex.