“For Mark to take the lead and say we’re going to tell your story, we’re going to do it with respect, and we really do everything we can to look you in the eye when you see the film and feel that we got it right,” said Patriots Day director Peter Berg at The Contenders Presented by Deadline of star and Boston native Mark Wahlberg and their film about the fatal bombing of April 15, 2013 during the city’s annual marathon. “For Mark to do that, took a lot of guts,” Berg added to a packed DGA last month.

Reunited for their third film together after Lone Survivor and Deepwater Horizon, Berg and Wahlberg passionately discussed the December 21 opening movie and their own qualms and resolve about making it.

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“For awhile, we kind of debated it back and forth that it was too soon,” said Wahlberg, who both stars and is an executive producer on Patriots Day. “But then we realized that with all the stuff that’s going on in the world, if you look at Orlando, if you look at Paris if you look everywhere all over the world, it’s really not soon enough because this is a message about love and hope and people coming together.”

Going wide on January 13, the up-close and fast paced CBS Films feature chronicles the attack that killed three people and maimed hundreds and the manhunt by law enforcement to find those responsible. Co-starring with Kevin Bacon, Michelle Monaghan, J.K. Simmons, Jimmy Q. Yang and John Goodman, Wahlberg plays the fictional Sgt. Tommy Saunders of the BPD. Themo Melikidze and Alex Wolff portray bombers Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzohkhar Tsarnaev, with Supergirl’s Melissa Benoist as the wife of the former.

Take a look at the video above to see more of Patriots Day’s Mark Wahlberg and Peter Berg on their very timely film.