INT: Pierce Brosnan
In THE THOMAS CROWN AFFAIR, Pierce Brosnan played a thief with a penchant for artwork. This Friday, he switches to diamonds in the Brett Ratner heist flick After the Sunset. Brosnan stars as an infamous jewel thief who retires to the Bahamas with his girlfriend/partner-in-crime (Salma Hayek). Convinced that hes planning one more spectacular heist, a determined FBI agent (Woody Harrelson) follows him out to the island in the hopes of finally nabbing his elusive foe. What follows is a cat-and-mouse game featuring plenty of shots of Salma in a bikini. For that, Ive already designated it as the top film of 2004.
Brosnan stopped by the Four Seasons in Beverly Hills last week to talk about making AFTER THE SUNSET. He also did an impeccable Salma Hayek impression. Check it out.
What attracted you to this project?
I basically had said to my agents, Look, it's time to read lots of scripts and try and fill in this part of the year, because I was going to go off and do Matador in Mexico City. So it just came in and I just liked that it was it had some kind of part to it, there was something there of character and romance and the character of a heist and the character of a buddy movie. If we got it all right, it would be good. And playing to also thematically, my own James Bond, Thomas Crown, and, not necessarily a stretch, but the audience sees me doing something which I can do relatively easily.
What kind of atmosphere does Brett Ratner create on-set?
Ratner's world. He creates an ambiance which is pretty, kind of, party-like. I really have the greatest admiration for the fellow. He drives me nuts at times, but I love him to bits, because he's just so different and his enthusiasm and his love for the film is infectious. He really was Herculean in his picking up the reigns of this piece on pretty short notice. I had been on this before anybody else. When we got him, then he set the tone. He gave it the look, the flair, everything that I've talked about. Trying to do the buddy, trying to do the romantic, trying to do the heist, and create something which had a heart to it, that you care for the people, you like the people. He's a bold lad, but I think he's someone who's extremely bright for the game and making films and has his finger on the pop culture pulse.
Salma's character must have been pretty thin on the page.
Salma and I just worried about what we had together and we wanted to come out of the film with dignity for ourselves as actors in these characters. We were fully aware of making it as sexy as possible and as sensual as possible and hopefully people cared about our characters, but you'll have to ask Salma those questions when you see her.
Did you have to do any special preparation? Any rehearsals?
No, not really. We just kind of liked each other. Salma, Woody and I, we just got on. I don't know how that happens. It comes from respecting each other's work and she had her moments of doing it. I try to keep a low profile as much as possible. Just try to make sure that the script is in shape and my character has some kind of meaning and some kind of arc to him if you want to use that overused term. But believability, go in and do it and go home, and hopefully there's not too much nonsense and shouting and screaming, but there was.
Salma did what?
Shouting and screaming. She did her shouting and screaming, but she's Mexican and so she's got that great blend, she's got that, Bret, pay attention to me! As Bret is behind the monitor on his phone with six models who've just flown in or whoever, and his mind is going like this and he's thinking of another lens. Bret, you don't watch me, you don't watch me! That's Italian; I'm no good on accents. Bret! Pay attention! How was I, was I good? But he sees everything. He's very clever. He does a lot of takes, a lot of takes and that was to try and find the tone. It was a very happy experience, I must say. It was a happy time with everybody and, you know, that can't be said of a lot of movies.
We heard that youd approached Bret to direct the last Bond film. What was it that made you think he would be right for the project? Was it a particular film hed made?
For the question I've already answered here, that he has his finger on the pop culture which is his own style. Coming from the land of music and film, music and image, MTV and that whole petri dish of filmmaking and consciousness of music and filmmaking, I thought he would be great for a Bond film, to jazz it up, to sharpen it. This was before he got into Red Dragon or Family Man. I thought he was a good man to talk to and meet with and present to the Broccolis, but it wasn't meant to be and God knows whose loss it was. It wasn't our loss, we got to work together on this film.
You mentioned that youd like Colin Farrell to be the next Bond.
Saturday night when I was in Dublin with a pint of Guinness in my hand, I said Colin Farrell. I think Colin would be fantastic. Or Daniel Radcliffe... (laughs)
Whats next for you?
Matador. It's wrapped and done and we're going up to the Sundance film festival, which I'm really pleased about. I've never done that before.
Questions? Comments? Manifestos? Send them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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