As the new season arrives in less than a month, we learn that the next season of the American Crime Story anthology should focus on Studio 54, the famous New York nightclub that was the scene of all the excesses in the 1970s.
Studio 54: American Crime Story will tell the story of Steve Rubell and Ian Schrager, who in 1977 transformed their Midtown Manhattan nightclub into an international nightlife hotspot for the rich, celebrities and commoners, renowned for its lavish parties, music, its genre and its overt drug use. With Rubell and Schrager’s meteoric rise, their epic fall came less than three years later, when the entrepreneurs were convicted of tax evasion.
In December 1978, Studio 54 was raided after Rubell allegedly said that only the mob was making more money than the club was making. The partners had been charged with tax evasion, obstruction of justice and conspiracy to allegedly loot nearly $2.5 million in unreported income from the club’s earnings.
Police reports at the time said the money and receipts were in the building and were hidden in sections of the ceiling of Rubell’s office, where he and Schrager worked. The duo was sentenced to 3.5 years in prison and fined $20,000 each on the tax evasion charge. In February 1980, Rubell and Schrager went to jail, and Studio 54 was sold in November of that year for $4.75 million to Mark Fleischman. He reopened it and then sold it in 1984 to new owners who closed the famous box in 1986.
The third season of ACS, Indictment: American Crime Story, about President Bill Clinton’s affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, premieres Tuesday, September 7 on FX (“Snowfall“). The series tells this story through the eyes of the women at the center of events: Lewinsky (Beanie Feldstein), Linda Tripp (Sarah Paulson) and Paula Jones (Annaleigh Ashford). To view the trailer, it’s here.