Jackie Chan may have flexed his dramatic acting muscles in “The Foreigner,” but he was all smiles on Thursday night at the film’s Los Angeles premiere.
Chan was joined by director Martin Campbell, actors Rory Fleck Byrne and Ray Fearon, and writer David Marconi at the ArcLight Hollywood to celebrate the revenge thriller, which also stars Pierce Brosnan.
Chan takes on one of the more serious roles of his career as a grieving father seeking justice when his daughter is killed in an act of terrorism. Still, Chan said he found it easy to get into character.
“The only difficult [part] for me is the English,” Chan told Variety. “I had to hear Pierce’s Irish accent, but he’s so good. He always said, ‘Jackie, if you’re not comfortable, let me know. I will just repeat.’”
The film is based on Stephen Leather’s 1992 novel “The Chinaman,” which Marconi adapted with Chan in mind. “He was the No. 1 person on my list, and he was absolutely terrific,” Marconi said, adding, “Pierce was a blessing I never counted on.”
Chan joked he only had “terrible memories” on set. He playfully expanded on that, saying, “Nobody make fun. So serious. Sometimes no lunch time, no dinner. Just unhappy on the set. I think the director did it on purpose. Nobody can talk.”
Byrne, however, lauded the on-set dynamic and said Chan always gave out sound advice. “I had some pinch me moments where I’m getting taught by Jackie Chan how to fight martial arts,” he shared.
Campbell also reminisced on stories from set. His funniest memory came from the first day working with Chan. “I go to makeup, and he’s sweeping up the makeup trailer,” Campbell recalled, laughing. “He literally was cleaning it up before he came up on set. This wasn’t an act.”
Right before the movie screened, Chan prepped the crowd saying, “I hope you enjoy my acting. It’s not a comedy like ‘Rush Hour.’ If you don’t like it, it doesn’t matter because next year we do ‘Rush Hour 4.’”
“The Foreigner” opens on Oct. 13.