McConaughey Tackles Unfamiliar Territory in 1980s Detroit With ‘White Boy Rick’

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“I haven’t done many country-song roles in my career, like ‘My dog got run over the day I went to jail.’ But that is this guy,” Matthew McConaughey told the media regarding his role as Richard Wershe Sr. in the movie “White Boy Rick.” The film recently revealed its first trailer. The movie is based on the true story of Ricky Wershe, son of McConaughey’s character – who became the youngest informant in FBI history at the age of 14. Based in 1980s Detroit, “White Boy Rick” is scheduled to be in theaters in September this year and features McConaughey’s role as a father who initially allows his young son to sell drugs which, in turn, spirals their lives into utter chaos.

Ricky Wershe, played by Richie Merritt, lost the support of the FBI based on these choices, and the movie is rumored to do an excellent job of portraying the real-life drama that unfolds in the father-son relationship. In an interview with USA Today, McConaughey explains, “This guy was not equipped to handle his family. He’s singing the chorus, like, ‘We’re going to do this.’ But reality takes over and wins. And he loses.”

McConaughey Tackles Unfamiliar Territory in 1980s Detroit With ‘White Boy Rick’

Photo: Facebook/CinemaCon

Director Yann Demange stated that to play the role to a “T,” the Texas actor was required to “…immerse himself into the role, working with a dialect coach to master the Detroit accent and dispensing with his normal McConaughey glow.” Wershe Sr. passed away in 2014 without seeing his son get out of jail. Wershe Jr. was arrested at age 17 (1987) for possession of cocaine, doing close to 30 years in jail for his first offense, prior to being paroled. At present, he’s serving time in a Florida prison for his involvement in a stolen-car ring while behind bars. In the process of making the film, McConaughey met Wershe Jr. and said, “He never claimed to be a saint, but at the same time he was adamant that he never had the amount of drugs he was busted for. He also understands that when he does become a free man, he will still be seen as (having) an outstanding debt to society.”