PASADENA, Calif. – Ryan Murphy created his new fast-paced procedural “9-1-1” because he needed a break from what he described as the “dark, cynical Trump era” we live in right now.
Murphy said he created the “blue sky” show that examines the work of 9-1-1 responders to showcase people who do “good deeds.”
“I think that’s what the show is about,” he mused Thursday at Fox’s Television Critics Association Winter Press Tour.
He said the show “created a community and family.”
“I sort of felt for me… what I was interested in is we live in a really dark, cynical Trump era time right now, and for me I was looking for something that was a relief from that,” he said.
He said the show won’t focus on politics.
“Are we overtly going after things that are political cases? No. In fact, I would like to do the opposite of that,” he said. “I am interested in, at this point, presenting stories… that are uplifting and aspirational and that give you hope and give viewers hope.”
The “Nip/Tuck” and “American Horror Story” creator said, in fact, he got the idea for the show years ago when he had a personal experience with a 9-1-1 call.
“My experience with 9-1-1… my son, Ford, was 11 months old, and in the middle of the night he stopped breathing so we called 9-1-1, and they showed up and at two in the morning. There were four responders. They were calm and nurturing… and then they brought him back to life,” Murphy said.
He said his frightening interaction with the first responders stuck with him.
“They really kind of talked me off a ledge, and I was very struck by what great people they were and how strong they were and from that moment on I was like ‘I’m really sort of interested in the inner lives of these people.’”
Murphy said his son was born with a tracheal blockage, and the first responders who came to his home took his child to the hospital.
“He was born with something that we did not know about… If they hadn’t showed up I think my son would have died.”
And Murphy noted each episode of “9-1-1” won’t have a happy ending. But he wants the show to give people the feeling of hope he experienced from the 9-1-1 responders that came to his home in his time of need.
“With me, they would only give me their first names,” he recalled. “I was grateful to them. They saved my child’s life.”
“9-1-1” airs Wendesdays on Fox.