Lionsgate has released the first poster for crime-thriller Inherit the Viper, starring former Walking Dead star Chandler Riggs alongside Josh Hartnett (Penny Dreadful), Margarita Levieva (The Deuce) and Bruce Dern (Nebraska). Per its synopsis: “For siblings Kip (Hartnett) and Josie (Levieva), dealing opioids isn’t just their family business — it’s their only means of survival. When a deal goes fatally wrong, Kip decides he wants out. But Kip’s attempt to escape his family’s legacy ignites a powder keg of violence and betrayal, imperiling Kip, Josie, and their younger brother, Boots (Owen Teague), in this searing crime-thriller that builds to a shattering conclusion.”
Riggs joined the cast in late 2017, shortly before it was learned his Walking Dead character, Carl Grimes, would be killed off in the mid-season premiere of the zombie drama’s eighth season. In a November 2017 post, Riggs revealed he had done away with Carl’s long-hair look: “Ok so as a forewarning im doing this movie and they had to cut my hair a little.. into a mullet,” Riggs tweeted.
“There were three things which helped us to secure this cast. The first relates to the material itself: the screenplay really was good, with great dialogue and meaty roles for the actors. Secondly, we had an unbelievable casting director,” first-time feature director Anthony Jerjen told Cineuropa at the Zurich Film Festival, where Inherit the Viper held its premiere.
Casting director Orly Sitowitz, whose credits include Into the Badlands, American Gods and Star Trek: Discovery, was “really invested, and she wanted to get us the best when it came to the actors.”
“She managed to get almost all of the actors that I’d dreamed of approaching to read the script. The third factor related to the actors themselves,” Jerjen said. “I explained to them what I had in mind for the film, that is was a bit different from other independent films being made, which borrow a lot from the documentary genre, with their handheld camera style, their nigh-on improvised dialogue and the stolen moments they offer up. I explained why I wanted to make this film, and, by all accounts, I managed to win them over. I think that one of the things that worked the best was the way I filmed violence in a ‘European’ style. Many American directors would tend to focus on the weapons themselves rather than the person behind the gun. The way we film violence in Europe isn’t the same as in the US. It’s something I’ve picked up on, and I wanted to show it in this way, in my film.”
Riggs, who returned to television with his role as PJ on ABC drama A Million Little Things, now in its sophomore season, previously said he enrolled in acting classes after being killed off The Walking Dead. Riggs has since said he “could not be more happy” with his role on A Million Little Things.0comments
Inherit the Viper releases to select theaters on On Demand/Digital January 10, 2020.