Today, we’re please to debut a poster for Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman’s new thriller, Nerve. Emma Roberts plays Vee, a high school senior who hasn’t been “living life,” so she does what anyone who’s having a late-teen life crisis might do: participate in a series of intense competition of dares for the watchers on the Web. While it starts out all fun and games — and she even becomes mildly Internet famous through her partnership with Dave Franco’s character — she soon becomes the victim of identity theft by the game-makers.
Nerve has a cool premise, and Joost and Schulman, who previously directed the hit documentary Catfish, definitely understand manipulation and Internet culture. While it’s definitely a crowded summer season, I can easily see Nerve becoming a sleeper hit, especially with the younger crowd who are enveloped with online relationships.
Check out the Nerve poster below. The film opens July 27th and also stars Juliette Lewis.
What was the genesis of this project?
Alli Shearmur the Producer came to us with an early draft. The concept of the game was so sticky, and it took place in NYC. It felt like the right extension of our interest in internet dramas, thrillers and shooting in our home city.
We pitched her a take on it immediately – Risky Business meet The Game.
How much changed from your original script to the finished film?
Lionsgate had the right idea — they said keep the concept but go ahead and make it much darker and much tenser. We worked with the writer Jessica Sharzer for over a year sculpting the characters and the arc of “dares” in the film. We definitely went too dark most of the time and pulled it back to Pg-13.
Because of the way this film positions the relationship of Internet and user, do you see it as a companion film of sorts to Catfish?
The internet is like a hammer, you can build a house with it or you can break someone’s face. It’s an all-purpose and all-powerful tool. To tell the story of youth and ambition today, is to tell the story of the internet.
Do you think something like Nerve is close to becoming a reality?
We hope audiences take some warning from the film – internet bullying from commenters can make people do stupid things. So will the promise of insta-fame. Hopefully, users are getting more and more savvy, so if something like Nerve does pop up, it will have stricter rules,
Do you think Catfishing has become easier or more difficult since your film and the TV series?
Lol. They’re wasn’t even a name for it before the movie came out! It’s amazing how many people are still out there catfishing, and getting catfished. If everyone just did a simple google-image search they’d save themselves a lot of heartache.
But this has been happening in some form since the beginning of mankind – it’s synonomous with crushes and insecurity.
What did you learn on the Paranormal Activity films that helped you direct Nerve?
Paranormal taught us that tension lives in the long take.
Here’s the official synopsis for Nerve.
Industrious high school senior, Vee Delmonico [Emma Roberts], has had it with living life on the sidelines. When pressured by friends to join the popular online game Nerve, Vee decides to sign up for just one dare in what seems like harmless fun. But as she finds herself caught up in the thrill of the adrenaline-fueled competition partnered with a mysterious stranger [Dave Franco], the game begins to take a sinister turn with increasingly dangerous acts, leading her into a high stakes finale that will determine her entire future.