Former Disney star Ross Lynch is shedding his clean-cut image for good with a dark and disturbing new role as gay serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer.
The 20-year-old Teen Beach Movie star plays the infamous killer during his high school years in Marc Meyers’ new film My Friend Dahmer.
The movie is based on Derf Backderf nonfiction graphic novel of the same name charting the author’s teenage friendship with Dahmer, who went on to kill at least 17 men and boys between 1978 and 1991.
Fans were given their first glimpse of Lynch as Dahmer on Thursday when the young star shared a picture of himself in character to Instagram, along with the news that the film will receive its worldwide premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York next month.
Also known as the ‘Milwaukee Cannibal’, Dahmer remains one of the world’s most notorious serial killers. After committing his first murder at the age of 18, he went on to carry out the rape, murder, and dismemberment of seventeen men and boys between 1978 and 1991.
The Wisconsin native, who had borderline personality disorder and a psychotic disorder, committed acts of both cannibalism and necrophilia. He was arrested in 1991 after a man he had invited back to his apartment and handcuffed escaped and alerted police.
After being found to be legally sane at his trial, Dahmer received 15 life sentences in 1992, but was killed in prison by fellow inmates less than three years into his sentence at the age of 34.
Explaining the premiseof My Friend Dahmer, some of which was shot in the actual house in Ohio where Dahmer grew up, director Meyers tell Entertainment Weekly: “It’s the story before the story we’re all familiar with.
“The book is this haunting, sad, funny, true look at Jeffrey Dahmer’s high school years, growing up in the suburbs of Akron, Ohio, in the mid-to-late ’70s — and that’s exactly what this film has become.”
My Friend Dahmer will premiere at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival, which takes place in New York City from 19-30 April.