Frank Ockenfels/FX; Inset: Daniele Venturelli/WireImage
In an interview for The Hollywood Reporter's Awards Chatter podcast Monday, the Ratched star, 46, revealed why she couldn't get excited about her dual role of actress Aubrey Tindall and yoga instructor Shelby Miller on the hit series' sixth season, "Roanoke," which premiered in September 2016.
"I just don't care about this season at all. I know people will get mad at me for saying it, but for me, this was post having played Marcia [Clark in The People v. O.J. Simpson] and it was what I went to do right after finishing Marcia," she said of starring in AHS season six after the success of The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story, in which she portrayed the role of the iconic prosecutor from the 1995 O.J. Simpson trial.
"I was so underwhelmed by the whole experience because I felt like I had entered into a new place inside of myself in terms of what I thought possible, in terms of what I might be willing to see if I can do," she continued. "I felt really kind of trapped by my responsibility and my contractual obligation to do American Horror Story. As much as it's my home and I've loved it always, it was the first time I felt like I wish I could have gone to Ryan [Murphy] and said 'Please let me sit this one out, let me out. "
With that being said, the Run actress felt ready to return for the horror anthology's subsequent season, "Cult," playing Ally Mayfair-Richards, a woman haunted by paranoia in the wake of the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
"I didn't really have to be there, I wanted to be there, because of what we had all just been through," Paulson said. "I felt, as a country, as this new place we felt we were in, I liked the idea that it was sort of mirroring what we were experiencing, and enough time had gone by … I was happy to be back for Cult but Roanoke, I kinda went kicking and screaming."
After sharing her truth, Paulson joked that Murphy might not be too happy to hear about her confession.
"I'm gonna get a call from Ryan like, 'Why are you saying that?' " she teased of the director and AHS creator.
The sixth installment of the FX horror series premiered on Sept. 14, 2016 after The People v. O.J. Simpson, which previously aired in February. The American Crime Story series was nominated for 22 Emmy Awards at the 2016 ceremony, where Paulson taking home the award for lead actress in a limited series or movie for her role as Marcia Clark.