Evan Peters has admitted portraying serial killer Jefferey Dahmer in his new Netflix series was ‘one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life’.

Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story chronicles the shocking murders of 17 young men and boys at the hands of the Milwaukee killer between 1978 and 1991.

And in an interview with Netflix, the actor, 35, told that he was ‘scared’ to take on the role due to Dahmer’s horrific past, adding that he had to go to ‘dark places’ during filming to get into the mindset of the killer.



'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Tough: Evan Peters has admitted portraying serial killer Jefferey Dahmer in his new Netflix series was ‘one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life’

The Netflix retells the story of Dahmer from the perspective of his victims – who were predominantly black –  and explores major mistakes Wisconsin police made in handling the probe of the notorious mass murderer, who made national headlines for acts of cannibalism and necrophilia.

In preparation of his portrayal of the infamous murderer, Evan watched the Stone Phillips interview with the real killer, while he read a number biographies and the 1992 police report of Dahmer’s confession.

In addition, the star listened to audio of the killer speaking to a psychologist or detective interviewing him, with Evan stating he was nervous about taking on the role as he noted how important it was to give an ‘authentic’ account to respect the victims’ loved ones.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Monster: Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story chronicles the shocking murders of 17 young men and boys at the hands of the Milwaukee killer between 1978 and 1991 (Dahmer pictured in 1991)

He explained: ‘It was so jaw-dropping that it all really happened that it felt important to be respectful to the victims, the victims’ families, to try and tell the story as authentically as we could.’

On how tough the process was, he continued: ‘Honestly, I was very scared about all the things that he did and diving into that, and trying to commit to that was absolutely going to be one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life because I wanted it to be very authentic.

‘But in order to do that, I was gonna have to go to really dark places and stay there for an extended period of time.’

Evan went on to credit the crew that were on set with him for keeping him stable as he delved into the dark subject for the series.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Role: In an interview with Netflix , the actor, 35, told that he was ‘scared’ to take on the role due to Dahmer’s horrific past, adding that he had to go to ‘dark places’ during filming

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Research: In preparation of his portrayal of the infamous murderer, Evan watched the Stone Phillips interview with the real killer, while he read a number biographies and the 1992 police report of Dahmer’s confession

He said: ‘I have to say that the crew was instrumental in keeping me on the guard rails, I cannot thank them enough and I could not have done any of this role with them…

‘It was a challenge to try to have this person who was seemingly so normal but underneath all of it, had this entire world that he was keeping secret from everybody.’

The series debuted September 21 to an audience of 196.2 million, garnering the streaming service its best ratings since Stranger Things’ season four amid Netflix’s switch in reporting ratings since June of 2021, Deadline reported.

However, it was not without a backlash, as viewers hit out at Netflix for adding an LGBTQ tag to the new Jeffrey Dahmer series.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Hard: ‘Honestly, I was very scared about all the things that he did and diving into that, and trying to commit to that was absolutely going to be one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do in my life’

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Portrayal: ‘It was so jaw-dropping that it all really happened that it felt important to be respectful to the victims, the victims’ families, to try and tell the story as authentically as we could’

Many called out the streaming platform – who have now removed the tag – saying they were ‘gobsmacked’ and ‘disgusted’ at the choice.

The series follows the infamous Milwaukee serial killer who murdered 17 people between 1978 and 1991 – many of whom were young, gay African Americans.

Many hit out at the tag, with one writing: ‘Netflix added the Jeffrey Dahmer series to the LGBTQ+ tag. I am gobsmacked.’

Another wrote: They put the new Jeffrey Dahmer movie under the LGBTQ tag and I am disgusted. IT’S NOT AN LGBTQ STORY LIKE WTF.’


While someone else said: ‘This is not the representation we’re looking for’ after the issue was raised on TikTok.

The true crime series has also been at the center of criticism over the continued commercial success of the true crime genre, and the traumatic impact it might have on survivors.

The sister of Dahmer victim Errol Lindsey, Rita Isbell, speaking with Insider Sunday, said that Netflix never reached out to her about the series, calling it harsh and careless.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash
'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

The latest: Dahmer – Monster: The Jeffrey Dahmer Story has been a ratings hit for Netflix, in spite of the controversy over the project. The series stars Evan Peters as Dahmer

‘I feel like Netflix should’ve asked if we mind or how we felt about making it,’ she said. ‘They didn’t ask me anything. They just did it. But I’m not money hungry, and that’s what this show is about, Netflix trying to get paid.’

In addition to Evan, the show also features actors Niecy Nash, Penelope Ann Miller, Shaun J. Brown, Colin Ford, and Richard Jenkins, with directors Paris Barclay, Carl Franklin, and Janet Mock.

Miller and Jenkins will play the roles of Dahmer’s parents, while Nash will portray Dahmer’s neighbor Glenda Cleveland, who tried in vain to report his bizarre behavior to authorities.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Outrage: The series faced a backlash, as viewers hit out at Netflix for adding an LGBTQ tag to the new Jeffrey Dahmer series.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Reaction: Many called out the streaming platform – who have now removed the tag – saying they were ‘gobsmacked’ and ‘disgusted’ at the choice

Peters has past worked with creator Ryan Murphy on a number of projects, including nine of 10 seasons of American Horror Story, as well as the series Pose.

Peters in April told Variety about the painstaking task he had taken of researching Dahmer in depth for the role.

‘I’ve read so much, I’ve watched so much, I’ve seen so much, and at a certain point, you’ve got to say, “All right, that’s enough,”‘ he said. ‘There are beautifully written scripts. You can have all the backstory you want, but at the end of the day we’re not making a documentary.

‘It’s more about maintaining the idea and the through line of why you’re telling the story and always having that as your guiding light.’


Dahmer in 1992 was convicted of 16 murders he’d been charged with, and sentenced to 16 life sentences in prison.

He was bludgeoned to death with a metal bar in November of 1994 by Christopher Scarver, another inmate at the Columbia Correctional Institution in Portage, Wisconsin.

The gruesome story of Dahmer has past been chronicled in the 2002 movie Dahmer, in which Jeremy Renner played the titular role; as well as 2017’s My Friend Dahmer, in which Ross Lynch played a teen version of the nascent serial killer.

'One of the hardest things I've ever had to do': Evan Peters admits he was 'scared' to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer - after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

Career: Peters has past worked with Murphy on a number of projects, including nine of 10 seasons of American Horror Story, as well as the series Pose. He was snapped in LA in March

Source: ‘One of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do’: Evan Peters admits he was ‘scared’ to play serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer – after the Netflix series faced LGBTQ backlash

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