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Depardieu was not drunk, just caught short -- co-star

FRENCH actor Gerard Depardieu's co-star in the new Asterix film has revealed he gave the legend an Evian bottle to urinate in while on board a Dublin flight.

Edouard Baer has denied that his travel companion was drunk during the incident which has caused international headlines.

Depardieu was "caught short" as a Cityjet flight taxied on the runway in Paris but was refused permission cabin crew to use the toilet.

The actors have since arrived in Ireland to film Asterix and Obelix: God Save Britannia, with an estimated budget of €50m.

Depardieu -- who plays Obelix -- was reported to be shouting "je veux pisser!" which means 'I want to pee'.

Mr Baer said the Green Card star "wanted to go to the toilets, he was refused access, we were nearly taking off so he urinated in front of everyone".

"I gave him a small water bottle. I found this solution; I had a mini bottle of Evian with me. It was simply too small, so it overflowed," he said.

Mr Baer -- who has the role of Asterix -- added: "He was embarrassed, he wanted to clean up. It was very embarrassing and humiliating for him. The stewardess is the one who overdid it."

However, another passenger contacted a French radio station to express outrage over the incident that occurred in business class. The woman said: "I was shocked. Does this mean that when you're an actor, you're not like everybody else, you don't have to abide by rules and regulations? He could have waited, but he didn't."

French Directorate General for Civil Aviation said: "It is extremely rare that planes are [forced] to turn around because of a passenger."

French reports today say that other passengers could sue Depardieu for public indecency but there is also a suggestion that the actor might seek to take a case against the airline.

The fourth instalment of the Asterix and Obelix series will be the first 3D live action feature to be filmed here in locations including Brittas Bay, Luggala and Annamoe in Wicklow, Drogheda, along the Boyne in Slane and in the The Burren.