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Pierce Brosnan Moves From Spy to Detective in Psychological Thriller ‘Spinning Man’

“I would say it’s Hitchcockian.”

That’s how Pierce Brosnan describes his latest film, “Spinning Man,” a dark psychological mystery written by Matthew Aldrich and directed by Simon Kaijser. Film Bridge is bringing the film to Cannes.

“In Simon’s hands, it has a spellbinding, bleak menace to it,” says Brosnan.

Based on a novel by George Harrar, “Spinning Man” stars Guy Pearce as a happily married professor whose life unravels when he’s implicated in the murder of one of his students. Minnie Driver co-stars as his wife, who begins to doubt his innocence.

“This is such a character study,” says Brosnan. “Especially in its depiction of the disintegration of a marriage.”

Brosnan plays Malloy, a tenacious Irish police detective in charge of the murder investigation.

“Malloy is a seasoned detective,” says Brosnan. “He’s a weary man who looks for proof, slowly and methodically. Yet he’s also a man with compassion, and a philosophical understanding of human kind. In a way, he’s somewhat priest-like.”

Despite playing a detective in the film, in his personal life Brosnan isn’t particularly fascinated by true crime cases like the one that inspired Harrar. “I prefer to concern myself with art, and paintings, and the lives of artists.”

Nor is he much interested in looking back at his time as the iconic James Bond, it turns out.

When asked if he and “Spectre” villain Dave Bautista shared any colorful 007 war stories on the set of their upcoming thriller “Final Score,” Brosnan answers with a curt “Yes,” and declines to elaborate. A question about the approaching 20th anniversary of his Bond film “Tomorrow Never Dies” earns a succinct reply: “Just a well-made film. Michelle Yeoh was spectacular in it.”

While the character is unlike any he’s played before, the film itself continues Brosnan’s trend of starring in projects with strong literary source material.

“When you have books like ‘The Ghost Writer,’ or ‘The Son,’ or ‘Spinning Man’ in this case, you have a good foundation,” says Brosnan. “It’s a wonderful reference point for any actor who’s playing a role.”

Although he describes the shoot as enjoyable, the film’s serious subject matter was reflected on set. “The work was intense. The work was focused. And the work was specific,” says Brosnan. “It was a joy to act with Guy Pearce, who I have great respect for. We just hit the ground running.”

The dogged detective is yet another juicy character part for Brosnan.

“It’s been a conscious effort and desire on my behalf to try not to be repetitive,” says Brosnan. “To explore and challenge myself to find roles that have more of a dramatic flair to them. It’s how I started as an actor.”

With adult literary thrillers like “Gone Girl,” “Nocturnal Animals” and “The Girl on the Train” coming back in vogue, Brosnan has no doubt that the chills and pace of “Spinning Man” will find an audience.

“Simon Kaijser is a great shooter, and he acquits himself with alacrity and care, and an understanding of the needs of an actor,” says Brosnan. “When the curtain goes up, Guy’s a suspect from the get-go.”

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