A trail of bittersweet thrills
David Wenham plays a detective in this mystery, writes
DAVID Wenham wishes his mother was alive to see his telemovie Dripping in Chocolate because it’s a show she would have loved.
‘‘My mother would have loved to have seen this,’’ he says. ‘‘She loved mysteries, any type of mysteries. It’s a pity she’s not around because she would have been able to give me lots of pointers.’’
Wenham, the youngest of seven children, says his mum loved reading Agatha Christie novels. He and one of his sisters used to be sent to the library once a week to borrow books for her. They always picked mystery novels. ‘‘Invariably we’d come home and she’d go ‘no, no, no. I’ve read it, read it, read it’,’’ he laughs. ‘‘More often than not we’d have to go back up to the library and get more books. I’ve never seen anyone read as much as her. She was an amazing lady.’’
She was just as avid with her mysteries on the television.
‘‘She’d say ‘it’s the only thing I watch a week’,’’ he says.
‘‘Well the only thing she seemed to watch a week, seemed to be quite a few of them.’’
Wenham took on the project just because it looked fun.
‘‘It’s just an enjoyable thing, that’s not going to fry my brain and I’m not going to have an emotional breakdown getting the character together,’’ he says.
He plays the proficient, though jaded, Detective Bennett O’mara.
‘‘He’s very, very good at his job,’’ Wenham explains.
‘‘He’s detoxing when we first meet him and that seems to suggest that there has been something different in his life. We find out during the movie what that is.’’
His onscreen love interest, chocolate shop owner Juliana Lovece, played by British actress Louise Lombard, is the exact opposite – she’s innocent, but not naive; divorced but not distrustful.
‘‘After everything that’s happened to her she could have become bitter or cynical but she hasn’t,’’ Lombard says. ‘‘She’s a light spirit and I like that.’’ Lombard says she liked the fact that the role was a big departure from the many detective roles she’s played.
‘‘There’s also something quite old fashioned about the pace of the piece that I was drawn to too,’’ she says
Playing someone who works with chocolate was hard to resist, says Lombard.
‘‘It says so much about a person who chooses to make chocolate their life,’’ she says.
As you would expect from someone whose occupation is chocolate, her character cannot understand why Bennett would choose to go on a detox.
‘‘Essentially it’s depriving yourself,’’ Lombard says.
Lombard loved making chocolate so much she’s considering opening a shop of her own in Los Angeles where she lives.
‘‘I’m very tempted to open a chocolate shop when I get home,’’ she says.
‘‘It’s a fantasy but the idea of making many flavours of chocolate. What a wonderful pre-occupation.’’
The actress says she liked the relationship between Juliana and Bennett because it reflected the life experiences of many people in their 30s and 40s.
‘‘If you’re this age and haven’t had a relationship that has had issues, or has gone badly, or ended badly or you’ve done the wrong thing then it’s quite unusual,’’ she says.
stars David Wenham and Louise Lombard.