Pierce Brosnan has turned his hand at learning a few words of Danish for his latest film, Love Is All You Need, which premiered at the Venice Film Festival earlier this week.
The Irish actor plays Philip, a successful English businessman based in Copenhagen, whose son is due to marry his Danish girlfriend at Philip's villa in Sorrento. It's on his way to catch a flight there for the wedding that he meets the mother of the bride, Ida (played by Trine Dyrholm) who has just about overcome her battle with cancer. Before she's given the all-clear from her doctors, Ida also learns that her husband is leaving her for a woman half her age. The events that unfold in Italy make for a brilliant romance with a twist, and not just for the newly-weds.
The mixture between Danish and English is carefully balanced by writer Anders Thomas Jensen and director Susanne Bier, but Brosnan was cautious not to disrupt that balance. "I said to Susanne; 'how is it going to work?' As an Irishman speaking in this drama, I don't want to upset the apple cart. She said 'no, don't worry. It'll be fine - everyone speaks English.' I threw in a few words here and there, and the conceit seemed to work."
Despite his initial worries with English being the Irishman's first language, Brosnan's co-star Trine Dyrholm acknowledges how it complemented the intentions in the film.
"Susanne uses language to tell something about the characters," Dyrholm explains. "Pierce's character is isolated because he lives in Denmark. He understands the language but he doesn't really speak it. My character isn't so good at English, so that makes her insecure."
Rather than being a typical and predictable romantic comedy, Bier's latest film - which she adds to an already commendable list including the Academy Award-winning In a Better World - is rather a romance film with some truly funny moments. English-speaking viewers might recognise more faces than just the former Bond star, as Danish actor Kim Bodnia (who plays Ida's husband Leif) rose to international acclaim after recently starring in the 2011 Danish-Swedish crime series, The Bridge.
The film is part of the line-up for this month's Toronto International Film Festival, and will be in released in the UK and Ireland from 2013.