On the set in Serbia with a bloody Ralph Fiennes
By Adam Tanner
BELGRADE (Reuters) - Dressed in military fatigues and with their faces covered in blood, Ralph Fiennes and Gerard Butler are at each others' necks, fighting on the ground atop broken glass and debris, trying to kill each other.
Still breathing heavily after an intense scene with one of Hollywood's fastest rising stars, Fiennes makes his way to a monitor to check out the latest bit of his directorial debut of one of Shakespeare's lesser-known tragedies "Coriolanus."
"We have botched beginnings all the way from my point of view," an irritated Fiennes said after watching a replay of the scene. "This is the kind of thing, I beg you to call out or say something."
"I think we need to do the explosion again," he said, referring to a blast which billows smoke across a play set in modern-day times and filmed around Belgrade in a gritty hand-held camera style.
Twice nominated for Academy Awards -- as a Nazi camp commander in "Schindler's List" and for the title role in "The English Patient" -- Fiennes is bringing the same intensity that characterizes his acting to the director's chair.
"I am under a lot of pressure, so there isn't time to be -- particularly today as we are coming to the end -- there isn't time sometimes to be always perhaps as tactful as you would like to be," Fiennes said during a later interview.
In the film Fiennes plays the leading role of Coriolanus, a general who eventually betrays his native Rome and joins forces with the city's enemy, Aufidius, played by Butler, star of the film "300."
Just days before wrapping up filming this week, Fiennes was directing a fierce knife fight with Butler in a scene taking place before their two characters later join forces. Continued...