Sarah Paulson's Scream-Filled Visit To 'Ellen' Is A True American Horror Story

Be warned: One scare involves a clown.

We've seen Sarah Paulson play everything from conjoined twins, the next supreme witch, and a ghost junkie — but who knew the actress herself was so easily frightened? Thanks to some epic scare tactics from Ellen DeGeneres on today's episode, we see exactly why Paulson is this generation's scream queen when the talk show host utilizes not one, not two, but three jump scares.

The first laugh-out-loud moment happens when Paulson is in the dressing room and DeGeneres pops out of the closet. The other moments are really a one-two punch for the American Horror Story star, as a man dressed in what appears to be a black-and-red witch costume comes from behind to make Paulson scream, while later, a man in a clown outfit jumps out of the table between the ladies.

We definitely feel for Paulson — especially with this jump scare:

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Aside from all the fun, though, Paulson did get to talk about the new season of American Horror Story, subtitled Cult. While creator Ryan Murphy was able to put some of Paulson's actual and very personal phobias into the show — such as clowns (coulrophobia), heights (acrophobia), bees (melissophobia or apiphobia), and clusters of small holes (trypophobia). That said, the Emmy-winning actress believes there's something actually we should be more afraid of than all of these specific phobias.  

"Every year we tend to have some sort of monster or supernatural element that kind of is designed to frighten people," Paulson said. "This year, what I think the big scare is about the show is the lack of communication we have going on in the country between different political camps. That lack of real communication has become the monster."

Hopefully — jump scares and unique phobias aside — we can watch this season of American Horror Story and come away having learned something in the process.

Watch Paulson scream three times on "Ellen" here:

See Paulson's full interview with DeGeneres here:

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