Matthew McConaughey in Talks to Play the Father of a Drug Dealer in ‘White Boy Rick’
The McConnaissance is still upon us, with Matthew McConaughey having lent his vocal talents to both Sing and Kubo and the Two Strings this year, as well as starring in Free State of Jones and just completing production as the Man in Black in next year’s The Dark Tower adaptation. Today, it was announced that the star is in negotiations to play the father of a police informant and a drug dealer in Yann Demange’s White Boy Rick.
According to Deadline, McConaughey’s character is a blue collar factory worker watching the Detroit auto industry crumble around him as he struggles to keep his family together. He also happens to be the father of infamous cocaine dealer Richard Wershe Jr.
White Boy Rick is about Richard Wershe Jr., who in the mid-1980s at the age of only 14 became and undercover informant for local and federal law enforcement agencies, and then established himself as a major drug dealer. The dual life he led eventually put him into the cross-hairs of the feds when he was found with 17 pounds of cocaine (at only 17 years of age). He was put in jail for life, but ethical questions remain as how much the feds were involved in putting him deeper into his life of drugs.
Demange is currently casting for an actor to play the kid himself. Wershe’s sentencing is considered controversial to this day because many believe that the police did him wrong giving him a life sentence after he informed for them for years, and many also think he may have been pressured by law enforcement to take up dealing to improve his cover. Wershe’s father himself was an FBI informant, which is why it was easy for agents to also recruit his son. But how much was Wershe’s dealing of his own volition, and how much of it was done under pressure?
White Boy Rick is set to begin shooting in March of 2017.