Evan Peters has revealed that he spent many troubling months in character as the serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer for the controversial Netflix sensation DAHMER: Monster – The Jeffrey Dahmer Story.
Given that Dahmer was responsible for 17 murders, this is obviously a nettlesome mindset for someone to occupy for months at a time. Peters has since spoken about the impact of playing such a reprehensible real character.
The role involved “four months of prep, six months of shooting” for the 35-year-old star who has been widely lauded for his portrayal. In order to depict Dahmer accurately, Peters had to watch and listen to endless footage of the serial killer.
“He has a very straight back. He doesn’t move his arms when he walks, so I put weights on my arms to see what that felt like,” Peters explained at a Q&A on the series.
The X-Men star added: “I wore the character’s shoes with lifts in it, his jeans, his glasses, I had a cigarette in my hand at all times.”
Aside from these physical details, he also had to try and garner some psychological understanding. “Yeah it was an exhaustive search, trying to find private moments, things where he didn’t seem self-conscious,” he said of the audio he would listen to before shooting.
While the series has since drawn backlash from the families of the victims and those questioning whether we should really be making entertainment about murderers, it is also the second most successful series in Netflix history.