Sam Worthington had to mask his Australian accent to play an Israeli spy in "The Debt," but as the actor notes, the entire film was comprised of a smorgasbord of dialects.
"I think if you look at the cast - Helen [Mirren]'s from England, Jess [Chastain] is American, I'm Australian, Marton [Csokas]' from New Zealand, Ciaran [Hinds]' Irish - we're all playing Israeli talking German - it's like a bad joke!" Worthington told OnTheRedCarpet.com. "But I think we try to get a universal sound. It's just like putting on a costume, it helps you create the world."
In "The Debt," Worthington plays the younger version of Ciarán Hinds' character David Peretz in scenes set in the 1960s. Peretz once worked as a Mossad agent and is haunted by one of his past missions now that he's retired. He and his colleagues were in the 1960s tasked with catching a Nazi war criminal - a doctor who experimented on German concentration camp prisoners during the Holocaust.
"He's an idealistic, naive young man who believes he can just complete his mission for Mossad and sedate the voices of his dead family," Worthington said of his character. "The problem is, when the mission goes wrong, all of that pent-up baggage that he has kept inside for so long comes spilling out and it's really hard - the director wanted me to be very introverted - not to the point of passive, but it's a different balance that he wanted the character to be... I'm really quite shy in real life and get uncomfortable. I hide it by being very bombastic and brutally honest but in reality, I get quite uncomfortable with things."
Jessica Chastain and Marton Csokas play his fellow agents. Helen Mirren and Tom Wilkinson play the characters in 1997 and star alongside Hinds.
"With something like this, where there are two parts to the movie, one half is set in the 1996 and the other is set now, it's about repercussions and twists on people's lives."
"The Debt" was released on Wednesday, August 31. It was filmed in London, Budapest and Tel Aviv and is a U.S. adaptation of the 2007 Israeli movie "Ha Hov.
The English-born Australian appeared in over a dozen low-budget Australian films before trying his hand in Hollywood. He rose to fame stateside after appearing in the 2009 film, "Terminator Salvation" and portraying Jake Sully in James Cameron's 2009 film "Avatar."
"[The Debt is] like the movies I used to do in Australia, I did ten years of movies in Australia - movies like this and thrillers and comedies - stuff like that,' Worthington continued. "We don't have the budgets in Australia to do an 'Avatar' or a 'Clash,' so to get to go back and do something that I'm used to, where my roots are, that's what I like about it... there's something about the speed of making these movies and the speed that these movies generate that I find interesting."
Watch a trailer for "The Debt" below.
Reporting by George Pennacchio of KABC Television, parent company of OnTheRedCarpet.com that also produces the entertainment show "On The Red Carpet" (check for local TV listings).