Dopesick creator and showrunner Danny Strong explained how keen Michael Keaton was to get on board with his latest project and his personal connection to the plot.
The series tells the story of the American opioids crisis in the 1990s, particularly uncovering the activities of Purdue Pharma, responsible for the manufacturing of OxyContin – an addictive prescription painkiller.
The new Disney Plus drama begins in the UK on Friday after being released last month in the US.
It comes with an incredible cast attached, featuring legendary actor Michael, alongside Will Poulter, Kaitlyn Dever and Rosario Dawson in key roles.
Michael plays small-town doctor, Dr Samuel Finnix, a well-respected member of the community in the Virginian mining town, who begins prescribing OxyContin to his patients before seeing the disastrous impact.
But despite the actor being highly sought after, showrunner Danny revealed how he came to be cast.
Danny told Metro.co.uk: ‘Well, we offered him the part, he was the first person that we made an offer to!
‘We already had Barry Levinson attached to direct, which is amazing to have a legend like Barry – an Academy Award winner – attached to direct the pilot, and then episode two, so that was certainly appealing to Michael, I think.
‘Michael was passionate about the subject matter because his nephew had passed away from an overdose.
‘So it was something he was personally connected to, as well. So yeah, we offered him the role and he accepted.’
Asked how he went about casting other parts for the series, Danny, who also wrote hugely successful series Empire, stressed his ‘simplistic’ approach to the task.
He added: ‘I have a very simplistic approach towards casting, which is I cast the best actor I can get that’s right for the part.
‘I’m never clever in my casting, I usually don’t cast people against type because the goal of casting for me is not to show how smart I am, that I was able to see them in a part other people don’t see – I don’t care about any of that.
‘I just want the performances to be as good as they can be to tell the story. And so always, always just cast the best actor that I think is right in the for the role.’
Dopesick episodes 1 and 2 land on Disney Plus on Friday, November 12, with weekly episodes dropping from Wednesday November 17.
Credit: Original article published here.