The 15-year-old native Texan was discovered on YouTube by writer-director Kat Candler
The film, which is part of Sundance’s U.S. Dramatic Competition lineup, debuts Friday, Jan. 17 at 2:30 at the Library Theatre in Park City.
Wiggins is a native Texan who had never acted professionally before starring in “Hellion.” Writer-director Kat Candler discovered Wiggins via self-made YouTube videos he had shot with his friends. Wiggins then went through a casting call process including an audition with Paul before landing the role.
“Josh had never acted before, and in every single take he blew me away. He really had an instinctual grasp of the character which helped set the tone for the entire shoot,” said Candler.
“Hellion” follows a family on the brink of dissolution set against the backdrop of the refineries of Southeast Texas.
Wiggins plays the titular figure, 13-year-old Jacob Wilson, whose obsessions with heavy metal, dirt bike racing and vandalism raise concerns around town, especially when it starts to involve his younger brother Wes (newcomer Deke Garner). While the boys’ father Hollis (Paul) loves his sons, he is still reeling from the loss of their mother, spending more time drowning his sorrows at the local bar and working on his damaged beach house than being a parent.
UTA is handling worldwide sales on “Hellion.”