'Valerian' Director Says Rihanna is Focused, Generous on Set - NBC 10 Philadelphia

'Valerian' Director Says Rihanna is Focused, Generous on Set

The pop superstar will play a burlesque dancer named Bubble.

    Winter Olympics PyeongChang 2018 Medal Count
    Country
    Total
    1
    Norway
    13121035
    2
    Germany
    137525
    3
    Canada
    97824
    processing...

    NEWSLETTERS

    5 to Watch: Comeback Kids in Women's Figure Skating?
    Christopher Polk / Getty Images for NARAS
    Rihanna was the director's first choice for the pivotal role and he figured it couldn't hurt to ask.

    Director Luc Besson says getting Rihanna's team on board for her role in the sci-fi epic "Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets" was a little painful at first.

    Rihanna's manager Jay Brown was a fan of Besson's films like "The Professional" and "La Femme Nikita" but they had to make sure they trusted Besson and his crew before they committed.

    The pop superstar co-stars in "Valerian," out July 21, as a burlesque dancer named Bubble who performs in a seedy club owned by Ethan Hawke. Although it's a relatively small part in the film starring Cara Delevingne and Dane DeHaan, it's already being hailed by early viewers as a scene-stealing performance.

    Rihanna, who wasn't available for an interview, was the director's first choice for the pivotal role and he figured it couldn't hurt to ask. She'd had a main role in the 2012 film "Battleship" and the animated "Home," and cameos in "This Is the End" and "Annie."

    Take a Peek Inside Tara's and Johnny's Olympic Hotel Wardrobes

    [NATL] Take a Peek Inside Tara's and Johnny's Olympic Hotel Wardrobes

    Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir are known for their style. But being on the road nearly a month for the Olympics means they need to bring a lot of clothing and accessories. We had the chance to take a look around the NBC Olympic analysts' hotel rooms to see just how much they brought with them.

    (Published Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018)

    He was surprised at how involved her team was at the outset.

    "They're very protective of her," he said "So before you get in, you have to prove that you're honest and you're there for a good reason ... . It's a little painful at the beginning, but after a while you go, 'Yeah, we get it.'"

    Once the Grammy winner's team decided to move forward, Besson said Rihanna "was lovely."

    "What was good was when she was on the set she's 200 percent focused with you, no entourage, she's there. When she's there, she's there," Besson said.

    "The problem, sometimes, is to have her there," the French director added with a smile, to which his wife and producer Virginie Besson-Silla quickly jumped in and said, "No, no, she's was good!"

    "She was good," Besson agreed. "She was amazing and so focused. I was surprised by how much she was ready and open to the director ... She was at my service and I was surprised at the beginning. She was so generous."

    When the 'Shib Sibs' Saw Leslie Jones in the Crowd, They Knew It Would Be a Good Day

    [NATL] When the 'Shib Sibs' Saw Leslie Jones in the Crowd, They Knew It Would Be a Good Day

    Alex and Maia Shibutani were scanning the crowd before their performance in the ice dance competition at the Olympic Winter Games when they saw a familiar face, "SNL" star Leslie Jones. After that, the "Shib Sibs" took the ice and won a bronze medal.

    (Published Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018)