Robert Redford was determined to land James McAvoy and Robin Wright as the stars of his new film The Conspirator, insisting "there was no other consideration" for the lead roles.
The Hollywood actor directs the new movie, which tells the story of a woman charged with conspiracy in the aftermath of the assassination of U.S. President Abraham Lincoln.
He admits he always had Atonement star MCAvoy and Wright in mind for the main parts - and he was delighted when they accepted.
Redford tells Piers Morgan Tonight, "Can I just say one thing about James? I wanted James right from the get-go, there was no other consideration.
"I knew he was a good actor, had a lot of wonderful energy, but I was amazed at how smart he was about the script and how much he already knew.
"I wanted her (Wright). I wanted James and Robin. On my end it was a done deal. I just hoped she'd do it."