Filmmaker Luc Besson had to persuade his producers to get singer Rihanna in his latest film "Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets".
The "Fifth Element" filmmaker knew from the start that he wanted to cast Rihanna as Bubble in his new sci-fi film, but Besson had to persuade his producers as they were unsure if they could get her in the independent film, reports femalefirst.co.uk.
"Bubble is the ultimate artists - that's the part. And for me, Rihanna is the ultimate - she's the queen. I thought about her from the beginning. And when we started the cast, I said, 'For Bubble, I'd love to contact Rihanna.' They (producers) said 'What's your second choice?' I said, 'Why?' They said, 'Luc, come on.' I said, 'Why not? Let's try it. Let's see'," Besson said at the premiere of the film here on Monday.
Besson and Rihanna enjoyed a "normal relationship" on set. He believes that the singer couldn't have been more "perfect" as a professional during the shoot.
"On set, she was normal. Even me, at the beginning, I said, 'I hope it's not going to be Rihanna and the great orchestra.' But on the first day, she looked at her entourage and said, 'You, out.' No one was on set. She came on set by herself.
"It was a normal relationship between an actor and an actress. When she got emotional she let me get in. She was perfect. The fact that she is the queen of soul is a handicap, in fact. I don't use that. She's not singing in the film. She's not a superstar in the film. She has a specific role. It's a handicap. And my concern with her was if she wanted to be in the film for the right reason or not, and she did," he said.
"Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets" also features model-turned-actress Cara Delevingne, Clive Owen, Ethan Hawke, Rutger Hauer and Dane DeHaan.