The Flip Side is no typical rom com
HAVE you ever wondered what could have been with the one that got away?
It's a storyline no doubt explored in films before, but with a cast including Eddie Izzard and a backdrop of South Australia, this is not your textbook Hollywood rom com.
Released in cinemas tomorrow, The Flip Side is an Australian "dramady" produced in conjunction with 20th Century Fox and Screen Australia.
It follows protagonist Ronnie, played by Emily Taheny, five years after having her heart broken by a British actor with whom she had an intense love affair on the set of a film.
When the British actor Henry, played by Eddie Izzard, returns to her home town, she is forced to confront the painful memories of being left behind, while contemplating the life she could have had as the partner of a charismatic movie star.
Emily says she connected with the character of Ronnie as she was a complicated woman with a challenging home life, something often missing from the stereotypes of the silver screen.
"I liked that she was keeping a few secrets and her life was a bit messy," Emily says.
"She didn't have all of her ducks in a row.
"There's so much pressure for women to have a career and successful partnership and children, it's nice to see that side of someone who's in a bit of a bind.
"Also that sliding doors moment of what if? What about that love that got away?
"I could identify with that. We've all had one that got away, haven't we?"
Emily says it was in her home state of South Australia, no less, that she had a similar experience with a foreign romantic partner.
"I did date a kind of semi-famous comedian back in the early 2000s," she says.
"He came out from London to visit and we did a road trip to Alice Springs and it went a little badly and we broke up.
"I saw a bit of Henry in that in a way. The outback's pretty harsh place.
"Should have just stayed in Adelaide."
However, she was happy to play tour guide for her European co-stars, the other being French actor Vanessa Guide who plays Henry's glamorous, manipulative girlfriend.
"It was great showing Vanessa and Eddie in particular, the beautiful vineyards and the beaches, and then the really boring things like where I went to school," Emily laughs.
"'My Aunty lives there, I cried on that corner'. Mundane things like that."
Getting to know each other on exciting excursions was all part and parcel of creating the film, especially when it came to sharing a set with world-renowned comedian and actor Eddie.
"The first time I met him ... I just got the shakes. I had to put my hands between my legs to stop shaking," Emily says.
"I was quite nervous, but then we went out to dinner later that night and I was fine after that.
"He was really funny, and really knowledgeable, and had many anecdotes about the entertainment industry, working with people like Tom Cruise, Judi Dench and Brad Pitt.
"His stories are incredible. So many stories."
Emily says her favourite scene in the film was a personal triumph, relishing in an 'I told you so' moment she'd been building up to for weeks.
"I'd been telling them (co-stars) I was a singer and they kept laughing at me," she says.
"I kept trying to edge that in to the conversation.
"(The director) said I need you to sing badly. I said I can't do that, I actually do sing.
"So she said try your best. Anyway, it came to the day on set, Eddie was playing the piano, and that's when Ronnie recognises the song and she starts singing.
"She (the director) let me sing it in tune."
While The Flip Side screens on cinemas across Australia, we can catch Emily's familiar face on our television screens on both commercial channels and the ABC.
"(I've got) a couple of things on television with Channel 10, then with Peter Helliar in How To Stay Married," Emily says.
"Then Mad As Hell in September, which I'm looking forward to, now there's been a leadership spill. Good timing - so much material."
The Flip Side opens in cinemas tomorrow.