Cameron Boyce went method in preparation for “Runt,” the indie drama that follows his character Cal, a high schooler who is neglected by the adults in his life and becomes a target of bullying, which leads to him resorting to violence himself. “Runt” became the actor’s last film before he died of a seizure caused by epilepsy on July 6, 2019.
Nicole Elizabeth Berger, who stars in the film alongside Boyce as Cecily, said she’s excited for audiences to see Boyce’s final work. “It’s bittersweet, not having Cameron with us,” said Berger. “But I’m happy his legacy gets to live on through the magnificent work he did.”
Berger also gave advice to those who are subjected to bullying or estranged familial relationships, like Boyce’s character was in the film. “It’s very easy to go down the wrong path, and it’s difficult to get out of it and get back up,” said the star. “So if you don’t have a support system and are in the same situation as these young people in the film, seek help, find a mentor and talk to someone. It’s hard, but it’s never too late.”
Aramis Knight, who plays Vic in the film, honored Boyce ahead of the Los Angeles premiere at the TCL Chinese Theater Sept. 22. “I think he’s really special in this movie,” said Knight. “I hope they get to see a side of Cameron that they didn’t see before.”
Best friend and co-star on Disney Channel’s “Jessie,” Karan Brar said he knew how important the film was to Boyce. “I’m really proud of him as a best friend.”
Sarah Jefferey, who played alongside Boyce in the “Descendants” franchise, said Boyce was looking forward to audiences seeing the film. “I remember hearing him talk about it when we were shooting the ‘Descendants.’ He was really excited for it, which makes this really emotional.”
Libby and Victor Boyce, spoke about the “Runt” premiere and watching their son on the big screen again. “It’s very bittersweet,” said Victor. “We’re very happy that it’s come out and we’re proud of our son’s work.” Libby Boyce added, “We know how much he put into it and it shows and so for that we’re really proud.”
After the star’s death, the Cameron Boyce Foundation was established, honoring his legacy by reducing gun violence and curing epilepsy — issues that Boyce was passionate about.
“We’ve been surprised by how much growth we’ve had since it started,” said Victor. “In two years, we’ve already funded a couple of major research grants for epilepsy and we’ve raised over a million dollars. We’re partnering up with other organizations that Cameron loved and was supporting.”
“After Cameron passed, it was very tragic for everyone and the entire community came together and wanted to support each other the best they could,” said Brar. “Right now, the goal is tackling epilepsy — Sudep especially, and finding the cure for it. I think the conversation around epilepsy doesn’t have as much nuance to it and we’re hoping to expand that conversation.”
“Being part of the foundation we’re so thankful for ‘Runt’s’ support for us, but really tonight is just about celebrating one of his final works,” said actor Sophie Reynolds, who is on the advisory board for the foundation.
“Runt” was the heaviest role Boyce played, pivoting him away from comedic acting in the Disney Channel franchise. “People thought of him as a Disney character and he was very good at Disney,” said Libby Boyce. “But he was also into the craft of acting, and it was really important for him to get this role and show off his acting chops — he wasn’t just a comedy actor for Disney, he was a true amazing actor.”
“Runt” will premiere in theaters Oct. 1.