When the dazzling duo arrive, flashbulbs blind and photogs shout hoping for the best shot.
What was it like doing a love scene with Monica? “What do you think it was like?” Clive asks me, with a chuckle. “We rehearsed a lot. She’s fantastic. She’s beautiful, but she’s a lovely girl to work with.”
The 42-year-old Italian beauty, who dabs her makeup between photos and interviews, tells me her favorite part of the movie is their love scene. “He’s a really playful guy. He’s respectable, generous, he has the best sense of humor and he’s a real English gentleman.”
How did Ramona Pringle, who gets “delivered” by Clive, feel about his protective side?
“I was lucky,” the NYU student, who brought her brand-new roommate to the premiere, tells me. “I think there’s a lot of girls who would like that, but at the same time, I was getting shot at. It wasn’t the most pleasant conditions, but with Clive, I felt like I was in good hands. By his sheer size alone — I’m a tall girl, I’m 5’8” — and he did all the stunts. He carried me, he ran up flights of stairs with me, so I figure any guy who can do that without complaint is quite the guy.”
Not only is Clive caring, but director Michael Davis tells me the 42-year-old Brit is also a practical joker. When filming on April Fool’s Day with twins and two animatronic babies on set, he swapped the real baby for an animatoric during a scene that called for the real baby. “He walks through the door, a rat bites him, and he drops the baby,” Michael tells me. “The mother comes screaming from behind the camera. ‘My baby, my baby, my baby!’ Everyone is freaking out. I’m going ‘this is the end of my career.’ Everyone is falling apart at the seams. That scene called for the real baby, and he switched it with the animatronic baby. He only told the mother!”
Considering Monica has a daughter, and Clive has two daughters, did they visit the set? “Everybody brought their kids to the set, but we didn’t show them the dirty bits,” producer Susan Montford tells me, adding that Monica’s nanny and Clive’s wife brought the youngsters. “Clive has a lovely wife, she’s a beautiful girl, and they would just be like a normal family coming to see daddy at work.”
Producer Don Murphy tells me Monica is ideal for the role. “There’s not a lot of actresses you could say ‘do you want to play the lactating hooker?’ and have them really knock it out of the park.”
She’s not the only one embellishing her wild side.
Paul Giamatti, who plays a sinister character in Shoot ‘Em Up fresh off his role as the cheating Mr. X in The Nanny Diaries, admits “It’s a dark phase for me.”