Ehrin's fellow executive producer, Carlton Cuse, revealed to Variety that they "spent a long, long time" making sure that Rihanna's Marion Crane will be different from Leigh's version of the character.
Will she meet the exact same fate as Janet Leigh's Marion Crane or will Bates Motel will put a spin on the horrifying tale?
Ehrin teased that there will be a twist on Marion's character in the A&E show. "She's edgier and sassier and less of an emotional victim". This season, the final one for the popular series, Bates begins to intersect with the Psycho story, paying homage to the film without being wedded to every detail. For example, we know that we're getting so much more context with this part than we ever got in the movie. I said, "How about Rihanna?", and Kerry said, "Oh, great". So we felt like the bar was pretty high for Marion Crane, and we just fell into clover.we couldn't have predicted she was going to do our show.
The producers praise the singer's work ethic on set, given the tight schedule of shooting 35 pages in a limited time frame.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Ehrin said that they were aware of Rihanna's previous acting roles prior to casting her as Marion Crane, so they weren't really that shocked by the incredible things she brought to role. Marion was on the run with stolen money from her boss, which led her to hide in a place called Bates Motel.
Cuse says he immediately pitched his idea to Bates showrunner Kerry Ehrin ("She loved it", he shares), after which he approached Rihanna's team.
Rihanna's clearly not afraid to tackle spin-off's of famous projects.
In the end, the Umbrella hitmaker accepted the role. He reached out to her - and she agreed to suspend her world tour for a week to film the two-episode arc.
The showrunners made sure that Rihanna is well taken care of in the show, so they hired Philip Abraham to direct the two-part episode, "Dreams Die First" and "Marion". Bates Motel star Nestor Carbonell (Sheriff Romero) and Philip Abraham direct the episodes, respectively.
"Bates Motel" season 5 airs Mondays at 10 p.m. EDT on A&E.