Former 007 Pierce Brosnan is back in the spy game with “The November Man” – though as the actor himself admits, his decision to take on the role didn't come without reservations.
“There was a certain trepidation,” he said while sitting down with me to promote the new action film. “There was a certain reluctance and a fear maybe, of going back out there in the spy game. And I didn't want it to fail, you know? I had the Bond looming over me. The legacy of that, the memory of that. And I wasn't sure if we should tamper with what had been done.”
Still, the material – an adaptation of the seventh novel in Bill Granger's book series of the same name – ultimately won him over, and he admits that in some ways the film actually takes a page from the grittier Daniel Craig “Bond” films that followed.
“Without question [the Craig films influenced 'November Man'],” he said. “I mean, I knew I wanted to take the gloves off, and I wanted this to be hard-boiled, edgy, flinty, real. I wanted to feel the blood in his veins, and I wanted a man who…the character of [Peter] Deveraux, you have somebody who is a sassy operative, and a cultured bad-ass.”
On a more somber note, I took a moment to ask Brosnan about his time working with Robin Williams on “Mrs. Doubtfire” – and like many others have done over the past two weeks, he was overflowing with praise for the late star.
“It was magic working with Robin,” he said. “It's been a hard blow all week, and it's been on everyone's lips and in everyone's heart, his passing. So it's just a great honor to have known him, to have worked with him and to be part of a beautiful movie like 'Mrs. Doubtfire.'”
To hear more from Brosnan – including what it was like keeping up with Williams' fierce improv skills and re-teaming with his “Dante's Peak” director Roger Donaldson – you can watch the full interview above.
“The November Man” hits theaters on Wednesday.