And isn’t Safe House is exactly the kind of film Gleeson is attracted to because it gives him an opportunity to explore the kind of moral ambiguity that has defined his best roles?
“Well absolutely,” he agrees. “Safe House is blurring lines. It’s funny, it’s something that I think has a certain consistency to it in terms of the characters I like to play generally. There are so few times in life when the actual truth is clear and unequivocal.
“There are so many blurred lines generally in life, and I think that the film is not afraid to look at it. It puts you in this very odd situation where you’re rooting for the anti-hero, the bad guy, as well as the good guy. You find yourself drawn to the right and the wrong people and you have to question your own alliances.
“I love the way it works dramatically. You find Frost’s character fascinating even though you know he’s on the wrong side.”
Later this year Gleeson will appear in The Raven, a fictional gothic horror film about the last days of the real life poet Edgar Allen Poe. In the film Gleeson plays Colonel Hamilton, a man who has a combative relationship with the poet, he reveals.
“It’s fictional really but based on real life events. Poe disappeared for a few days before he died and when he finally turned up he was in an awful state – wearing someone else’s clothes – and no one knew where he had been or what he had been doing,” he said.
“We’re going to take a fly at that for this film. (Irish American actor John Cusack plays the doomed poet). I had a great time inventing my character in the film, how he got his wealth and his back-story. He’s basically the father of a daughter that he thinks Poe is unworthy of. It was kind of a lot of fun to figure him out."
One more rumor doing the rounds is that Gleeson will soon film Connemara Days, a film about the legendary filming of The Quite Man in Ireland. But don’t get your hopes up.
“I don’t know where that story came from. It’s a good idea and I’d be open to listen but no one’s ever contacted me about it. It’s like one of those rumors that took off because everybody quotes everybody else quoting it. I just wish somebody would come up with a great script because it sounds like a great idea. We’ll wait for it to arrive,” he laughs.
And the final word on Safe House? “I just YouTubed it before we talked because I was just saying I hope I remember it all – it was a while ago when we shot it. There’s something like eight million hits on the trailer so I don’t think it needs my help. It just works.”
Here, watch the trailer for 'Safe House':