Brendan Gleeson, Kelly Reilly tackle heavy fare in "Calvary"

Brendan Gleeson may just have cinematic whiplash.

The Irish actor, known for performances in the "Harry Potter" films and "In Bruges," just co-starred with Tom Cruise in the action-heavy "Edge of Tomorrow," and now he's taking on a much more grim assignment with the new drama, "Calvary."

Gleeson plays Father James, a priest in a small village along the Irish coast who has a strained relationship with his adult daughter (it's a long story), played by "Sherlock Holmes" and "Flight" actress Kelly Reilly.

One day, a parishioner tells Father James that he was sexually abused as a child by a now-deceased priest and he's going to kill Father James as retribution in seven days.

The film, which scored positive nods from critics when it premiered at Sundance in January, comes from writer-director John Michael McDonagh, who previously worked with Gleeson on 2011's highly-acclaimed "The Guard."

McDonagh wrote the role of Father James, a kindhearted man with an impressive amount of patience, specifically for Gleeson.

"We talked about the notion of a good priest while we were still finishing up 'The Guard,'" Gleeson said in a recent interview with CBS News."

"But [McDonagh] had to write the screenplay. We kind of shared the notion of it and the idea, how it'd be interesting to explore."

Watch the video above to see Gleeson and Reilly discuss how they prepared to play father and daughter. Reilly also discusses how her character in this film compares with her role on the new ABC series, "Black Box."

"Calvary" is now playing in theaters.

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    Ken Lombardi is an entertainment reporter for CBS News. He has interviewed over 300 celebrities, including Clint Eastwood, Oprah Winfrey and Tom Hanks.