Choc- full of sul­try in­trigue

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Television -

DAVID Wen­ham has veered be­tween wildly dif­fer­ent TV and film roles, of­ten blur­ring boundaries be­tween hero and vil­lain.

He im­pressed as con­tro­ver­sial lawyer An­drew Fraser in the minis­eries Killing Time, adding to a string of cred­its in­clud­ing The Lord of the Rings, 300, Van Hels­ing, An­swered By Fire and Seachange. Wen­ham’s lat­est chal­leng­ing role is Syd­ney cop Ben­nett O’mara in Drip­ping in Choco­late, in­ves­ti­gat­ing a se­ries of killings, with volup­tuous cho­co­latiere Ju­liana Lovece ( Louise Lom­bard) a pos­si­ble sus­pect.

Wen­ham de­scribes Ben­nett as an ever- so- slightly crum­pled but very pro­fi­cient de­tec­tive. Will his in­ves­ti­ga­tion be com­pro­mised by his at­trac­tion to the in­trigu­ing Ju­liana? ‘‘ Ben­nett is detox­ing, an un­usual premise,’’ Wen­ham says. ‘‘ And as it’s pos­si­ble Ju­liana may be in­volved [ in the case], he finds her more fas­ci­nat­ing.

‘‘ My mother loved mur­der mys­ter­ies and I’d watch pieces like this with her as a kid, try­ing to guess the guilty party.’’

Bri­tish ac­tor Lom­bard was so de­ter­mined to bring au­then­tic­ity to her role she set out to learn choco­late- mak­ing.

‘‘ There is a whim­si­cal, in­trigu­ing qual­ity to peo­ple who make choco­late their world, their life,’’ she says. ‘‘ This feels very dif­fer­ent to past crime dra­mas I’ve seen or been a part of. Its pace al­lows the char­ac­ters to de­velop and it’s nice not to play the de­tec­tive [ which] I’ve been do­ing for a few years.’’

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