Venice film festival rounds off with steamy Passion

Fri Sep 7, 2012 11:30am EDT
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By Mike Collett-White

VENICE (Reuters) - Brian De Palma's thriller "Passion" explores the sexual attraction and professional rivalry between two ambitious female executives who will do anything to get ahead in advertising.

Canadian Rachel McAdams plays Christine, a domineering and manipulative manager in a successful advertising firm who is both attracted to and threatened by her talented colleague Isabelle, portrayed by Sweden's Noomi Rapace.

When Christine steals an idea from Isabelle to further her career their friendship begins to unravel, hastened by Isabelle's decision to start an affair with her rival's boyfriend.

Rapace said some of the steamier scenes she shared with McAdams were improvised.

"I think it was something that we talked about and kind of discovered and tried out on the day rather than something that was written on the page," she told reporters after a press screening and ahead of the red carpet world premiere on Friday.

"We did different takes and some of them were kind of a little bit more sexual ... and some were kind of colder because I think those two women, they use sex as a weapon.

"They are not in love and they are not really attracted to each other but it's one of the tools they use against each other and against people around them."

De Palma, best known for films including "Carrie", "Scarface", "The Untouchables" and "Mission: Impossible", said he had been taken aback by some of the acting.   Continued...

Director Brian De Palma poses during the photocall of the movie "Passion" at the 69th Venice Film Festival September 7, 2012. REUTERS/Tony Gentile