In Fatale, a married man is tricked into a murder scheme by a female police detective

By Alexia Fernández
December 03, 2020 10:04 AM
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Hilary Swank and Michael Ealy are turning up the heat in their new film.

In a PEOPLE exclusive look at the first trailer for Fatale, Ealy stars as Derrick, a successful and married sports agent who after a one night stand with police detective Valerie Quinlan, finds his life upended when she entangles him in a murder investigation.

"Can you think of anyone who might want to harm you? Friends? Family?" Valerie asks Derrick as he and his wife recover from a home invasion. "Or a woman you screwed and discarded?"

Swank, 46, tells PEOPLE the femme fatale role was "really fun to play" and that "there are so many layers to the cat-and-mouse game these two characters get caught up in."

"This is a very strong woman who’s fighting for something incredibly important but it’s coming from a basis of fear and desperation," she says. "Those underlying motive drivers were great to tap into as an actor."

Hilary Swank and Michael Ealy
| Credit: Scott Everett White

The two-time Oscar winner also had great things to say about Ealy, 47, who she calls an "incredibly strong actor."

"He can turn on a locomotive of charisma and sexual energy on the screen when it’s called for. I think he really tapped into some powerful stuff in this movie," she says. "I can’t imagine anyone else in the role, and to me, that’s a sign of an actor nailing it."

Ealy tells PEOPLE working with Swank was "very much like working with many other actors in my career."

"Not because she isn't an extraordinary two-time academy award-winning actress, but because she never acted like one," he said of his costar. "Hilary is so talented, humble, and giving as an artist and a human being."

The film, produced by Swank, is directed by Deon Taylor (The Intruder) and also stars Mike Colter, Danny Pino, Tyrin Turner.

This is the latest film Swank has produced since 2018's What They Had and her Netflix series Away, which debuted earlier this year.

Fatale comes out on Dec. 18.