Evan Peters says he spent months in character as serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer
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Evan Peters went to surprising lengths to prepare for the role of cannibalistic serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer.
The show's creator, Ryan Murphy, recently sat down with the stars for a panel and shared that the 35-year-old decided to go full method acting while portraying the famed Milwaukee Cannibal. Hopefully not too method.
Murphy said that Peters conducted extensive research and based his performance on Dahmer’s 1994 interview with Dateline to ‘dive into the psychology of that extreme side of human behaviour’.
During the four months of preparation and six months of shooting, Murphy noted that the American Horror Story actor fitted lead weights around his arms and had lifts in his shoes to master Dahmer’s physicality.
Murphy told the audience that he ‘basically stayed in this character, as difficult as it was, for months’.
Peters also explained to panel (via Variety): “He [Dahmer] 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.
"I wore the character shoes with lifts in them, his jeans, his glasses, I had a cigarette in my hand at all times.”
The actor even went as far as to listen to a 45-minute audio composite daily from the serial killer to get his speech patterns down pat, as well as working with a dialect coach.
He added: “It was an exhaustive search, trying to find private moments, times where he didn’t seem self conscious, so you could get a glimpse into how he behaved prior to these interviews and being in prison.”
However, this method acting saw some of his co-stars worry for him.
Niecy Nash, who played concerned neighbour Glenda Cleveland, says Peters kept his distance from the cast and crew.
She told the panel: “People will say, ‘What is Evan like?’ and I’m like, ‘I don’t know, I don’t know that man’.”
Since the release of Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story, Peters' performance has been met with critical praise. Even a bar owner who used to serve the murderer in the '90s admitted that the actor nailed it.
While he said that the series isn’t ‘perfect’, Bob told LADbible that there was one scene where Peters was ‘spot on’.
He said: "How did his personification go? I thought that he was... if you watch the first episode, you get a look at his eyes. And I thought, there's the connection right here.
"When he glares at Glenda Cleveland, right. It's that first kind of vignette, and she confronts him on something, and he turns back, and that's [the] monster right there. So I thought that was absolutely correct."
Bob met Dahmer in 1991 when he first walked into his establishment. Instantly, Bob knew something was unsettling about the young man.
He said: "There was really no conversation, but I will never forget his eyes, they would just bore into you. They were dead and yet gimlets at the same time.
"It was a very disconcerting feeling. I could close my eyes and still see them."