Cast Interview for The Water Man: Lonnie Chavis & Amiah Miller

By 5/27/2021 10:07:00 PM ,

A few weeks back, I screened THE WATER MAN film, before it's released in theaters, and really enjoyed it. The storyline was engaging and had lots to offer including heart touching moments, mystery, and adventure.

Note: I was invited as media to the movie screening and film cast roundtable. However any personal views expressed are always 100% my own.

Now that THE WATER MAN has released On Demand (May 25), I wanted to share my interview with the film actors Lonnie Chavis (plays Gunner) and Amiah Miller (plays Jo) and what went into their roles while filming.

The film has a theme of fears, did you face any fears?

Lonnie Chavis: I had lots of fears during this movie, and heights was one of them. And the darkness was one of those and I had anxiety too. So, there were lots of scenes in particular, but specifically speaking, the log scene was definitely a difficult one for me.

Because when I had gotten on the log, it's a really, really high log by the way. When I had gotten on top, I did not want to get down.

And my mom, she had tried to calm me down but couldn't. I just kept on about how high this was, how scary this was. And then Mr. David stepped in and he reminded me why I'm doing this. I'm doing this (as Gunner ) for all the love and the passion that he has for his mom.

Amiah Miller: One of my fears with this role in particular, I think it's kind of deep, was about not really achieving everything that I knew I was capable of, as an actress.

And I think that's something that a lot of actors and actresses face. Knowing that you're so fully capable of doing a great job, but being afraid that something will stop you.

And I think, we all have our fears. And that's something that I had to grow from and learn from and know that---I am doing a good job and I was challenged. You know, Lonnie helped me. And I think we both had many fears to face but we came out a lot stronger.

About working with bugs for certain scenes

Amiah Miller: They weren't real. But Lonnie, didn't you have a scene at the end of the movie, and they used real bugs?

Lonnie Chavis: Yes. I had a scene at the end of the movie. They're called Madagascar hissing cockroaches. They're like this big. And they hiss when they feel threatened or something.

So, when I had walked into the set that day, I heard hissing and I thought there were snakes. I mean, they're huge. They're literally huge. And I had to interact with them to make sure that I felt safer around them and I hated it. I wanted to go home, dude. They’re so huge, it's creepy. I don't mess with bugs like that.

What drew you to your role and being part of the film?

Lonnie Chavis: You know, when I had gotten the script, I was 11 at the time. And what made me interested, is what would make any 11 year old more interested, I wanted to be in it for the action, and the adventure and the graphic novels and the supernatural thing on the set.

But when I dug deeper into it with my mom, I realized that I'm basically Gunner. I can relate to Gunner. And a lot of kids will be able to see themselves on TV. I mean, this is all about representation in this movie.

Amiah Miller: Yes. And what initially drew me into Jo was, I think, just how different she is from me, and just how challenging the role is. I’ve never played anyone like her.

And I think she also shows kids, that go through similar things, that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. And all you need is one good person, one person to believe in you and you can turn your life around and become a better person.

And I think that's such a beautiful story, and I'm honored I got to play it.


Gunner (Chavis) sets out on a quest to save his ill mother (Dawson) by searching for a mythic figure who possesses the secret to immortality, the Water Man.

After enlisting the help of a mysterious local girl, Jo (Miller), they journey together into the remote Wild Horse forest -- but the deeper they venture, the stranger and more dangerous the forest becomes.

Their only hope for rescue is Gunner’s father (Oyelowo), who will stop at nothing to find them and in the process will discover who his son really is.

THE WATER MAN Official Trailer

Starring: David Oyelowo, Rosario Dawson, Lonnie Chavis, Amiah Miller, Alfred Molina, Maria Bello
Directed By: David Oyelowo
Screenplay By: Emma Needell

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