Matthew McConaughey is in talks to star in upcoming crime drama White Boy Rick. If McConaughey does choose to sign on for the project, he will play the lead character’s father, a salesman in Detroit.
The film is based on the true life events of Richard Wershe Jr., a young white gangster/drug dealer, who thrived in a 1980’s Detroit ghetto dominated by African-Americans. At the age of 14, Wershe became an undercover informant for local and federal law enforcement agencies, pushed further into the drug circles of Detroit. Controversy arose after Wershe was incarcerated for life in 1987 at the age of 17 after being caught with 17 pounds of cocaine. Since then, he has become a legend among the Michigan community, as many believe that the circumstances surrounding his entrance into the drug-dealing world (i.e. his employment by the law enforcement agencies) forced him so deep into crime circles at such a young age, that he should not have been held completely responsible for his actions.
Wershe’s role has not yet been cast. The film is set to start filming in Michigan and Ohio this coming March.
British/French director Yann Demange is helming the project. Demange’s previous film 71 garnered him much critical acclaim, winning him the British Independent Film Award for Best Director and getting him a nomination for the BAFTA Award for Outstanding Debut by a British Writer, Director or Producer.
A Texas native, McConaughey won a Oscar for Dallas Buyers Club in 2014. This summer, he could be seen in Free State of Jones and The Sea of Trees. He will be seen next in the adventure/drama/thriller Gold with Bryce Dallas Howard, set to be released Christmas Day. Next year catch him with Idris Elba in The Dark Tower, an adaptation of the classic Stephen King novel.
No release date is set for the White Boy Rick.