''I am lying beside Salma Hayek in the most beautiful revealing bikini, sipping mojitos,'' says Pierce Brosnan from the set of his caper comedy ''After the Sunset.'' ''But we're really in a car park in Culver City.'' Shooting on the $50 million-plus ''Sunset'' wrapped in the Caribbean last winter, but here's Brosnan in late July being filmed catching some rays in a SoCal parking lot. Director Brett Ratner insists, ''I'm not reshooting anything that I'd already shot -- I'm adding some stuff.'' As Ratner tells it, he recently showed a rough cut of the film -- about a jewel thief (Brosnan) who retires to the Bahamas with his wife and partner in crime (Hayek), where one last diamond-pilfering opportunity materializes -- to his pal writer-director Jeff Nathanson, who penned ''Rush Hour 2.'' ''He said, 'I have some funny s--- to write...some scenes for you.' He's, like, so f---ing funny. So I'm like, 'Yeah!' So he wrote it, I gave it to [New Line], and they wrote me the check.'' So a new post-big-heist scene was added to the script (''After After the Sunset''?) and the cast gathered again in the less exotic, makeshift Los Angeles set.
From the sound of it, though, the reshoot -- sorry, er, new stuff -- was just a drop in the ocean. Ratner signed on in August 2003 after John Stockwell (''Blue Crush'') departed over reported creative differences. ''Thank God...otherwise we would have been up the creek without a paddle,'' says Brosnan. ''He is a force to be reckoned with, Brett. He is just a sweet bad boy.'' Not unlike Brosnan's benevolent burglar, Max, who in the course of events is trailed by his FBI nemesis (Woody Harrelson) and confronts a local hood (Don Cheadle). ''It starts where other heist movies end,'' says Ratner. ''It usually ends on the beach with the umbrella drink, right? This movie starts there.'' Brosnan, meanwhile, knows what we're thinking: ''This character is not as austere as Thomas Crown was,'' he says, noting the similarities between this and his role in the 1999 thieving thriller. ''This guy is much more accessible -- he just loves stealing things.''
WHAT'S AT STAKE If Brosnan does hang up his 007 tux, a successful ''Sunset'' would start his post-spy career with a bang.