Sweet Tooth Interview: Jepperd’s Nonso Anozie, Gus’ Christian Convery

Credit: Netflix

Sweet Tooth is a live-action Netflix series based on Jeff Lemire’s comic book series and executive produced by Susan and Robert Downey Jr. The post-apocalyptic fairy tale is set in a world where a virus has wiped out a lot of humanity, and human/animal hybrids are mysteriously appearing. Christian Convery plays Gus, a half-deer/half-boy hybrid, who joins the reluctant Tommy Jepperd (Nonso Anozie). We had a chat with the two stars of the series.

“And then when I figured out that I got the job, I was so excited,” Convery said. “I went straight to researching all about how deers move, how they react, and everything about deers. And they did parkour training for the show because deers have to run and jump really fast all the time. That’s basically about how the process went. Then we flew to New Zealand, which is really cool.”

“I had to kind of fight for the role,” Anozie said. “I had to audition as you know, and there were a lot of people that really loved the character of Tommy and wanted to play him. I just did the best I could to do my research into the character and portray my version of what I believe Tommy Jepperd was. Robert Downey Jr, the casting director, and the director bought what I was selling them, and here I am playing Tommy Jeppered today.”

The world of Sweet Tooth is dangerous, and Jepperd is a man who can handle himself through his fighting skills and strength.

“I had to do five lessons,” Anozie explained. “In the first episode, I had to do that big fight scene, and I do that all by myself. No stunt double in that scene. So that was pretty tough. But Christian is very physical in the show – very, very physical. I think it was six months of lockdown and not really much physical exercise, that fight scene was about all I could handle.”

Credit: Netflix

Sweet Tooth is a comic book series that was released back in 2009 under DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint. Each actor has different ways of preparing for the role.

“So I was never really into comic books or graphic novels before I booked Sweet Tooth,” Convery said. “But when I got it, I was researching about the comic books. And then I was like, ‘Wait, I just realized that I can order the comic books,’ and ordered them and then read them over and over and over and over again millions of times. Now I’m a pretty big fan of comic books and graphic novels. And I also researched how deers move and react as I said before.”

Credit: Netflix

“For me, I just do that very boring, classically trained actor thing of whatever people say about the character, I write it down,” Anozie said. “Whatever the character says about himself, I write it down. From his backstory, I take that he was a physical athlete. From the comic books, I get this kind of Cowboy/Western old, kind of loner kind of feeling. He’s an African American because I’m playing him and he literally comes together as what I present on screen, and all I can say is I hope you enjoy it.”

The script captured Anozie’s attention, and Convery liked the story involving hybrids and a virus.

“What made me really want to do this project is the fact that this is such a unique role and project,” Convery said. “this project IS about a virus with hybrid, which is a part human, part animal. I also really wanted this project because I would have been able to be a deer and I’d have been able to go to New Zealand, I would have been able to meet new people like Nonso, for example. That’s what really caught my eye to doing Sweet Tooth.”

“For me, it was the script – the way it was written,” Anozie said. “The first episode just flowed off the page. As soon as you read it, it was just like, ‘Bam!’ and it just hit me. I was like, ‘Wow.’ I’m not in the first episode that much, but I sat down with the director, and he went through the character arc of what would be expected of Jepperd. And I really was like, ‘I’ve got to play this character.’ And then you’ve got the added bonus of Warner Brothers and Netflix. And Sir Robert Downey… I don’t think he a knight, but Robert Downey Jr. is helming the project. His lovely wife, Susan Downey, and team Downey are at the helm and amazing director Jim Mickle. Those are all incredible reasons to be involved in this production. And not only did I want to, but I feel honored that I got the chance, and to work with Christian, as well. This little fella is quite special.”

You can check out the video interview below:

https://youtu.be/bSt6U24K-S4
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