If you think Emily Blunt gets steamy with co-star Ewan McGregor in Salmon Fishing in the Yemen, well, you’re wrong. “I didn’t have a sex scene with Ewan,” the actress told Style.com at the Cinema Society’s unveiling of the film in New York last night. “Oh, god, we just swam,” she clarified. And lo, the screening proved her right. Lasse Hallström’s romantic tale about making an unlikely pursuit succeed in an unusual place) is, in the end, more sweet than sweaty.
And the title is no metaphor. McGregor plays a persnickety government fisheries expert enlisted by an Arab sheikh (and his investment associate, played by Blunt) to bring the mogul’s favorite sporting pastime to the Middle East. “I didn’t know much about fish, and I had to learn how to cast a fly rod,” McGregor explained at the screening, which was sponsored by Grey Goose and Opium Yves Saint Laurent. He added that he learned in Scotland, where guides are called gillies, from a man named Billy: “Billy the Gillie.”
Blunt (who wore Miu Miu) stayed longer after the screening than McGregor did, getting into extended conversations at The Crosby Street Hotel’s basement lounge with both Helena Christensen and Patricia Clarkson. There was salmon there, too: smoked and placed on blinis.