“The sex scene was probably the main reason I wanted to do the movie,” Alison Brie says. She’s talking to me about her part in Sleeping With Other People, the latest from independent filmmaker Leslye Headland which opens in Australia this week.
Brie plays Lainey, a serial cheater, who runs into Jake (played by Jason Sudeikis) at a sex addicts anonymous meeting, years after they lost their V-cards to one another in a random hook-up during college. The reliable rom-com sparks fly, but there’s a contemporary twist: the promiscuous duo decide, chemistry aside, to form a strong celibate friendship instead.
As her first lead role in a film, playing Lainey is a strategic career move for Brie. Attaching herself to a romantic comedy that, as the title implies, involves discussion of sex as well as the act itself, Brie is actively stepping away from the good-girl image cultivated in her best-known role as Annie Edison on the past six seasons (and a movie?) of cult show Community. “It’s something I really wanted to do, to be seen as a more of a woman,” she acknowledges.
As the bond between Lainey and Jake grows in the film, the pair work on their respective psycho-sexual issues; Lainey is erotic fixation on a married man; Jake can’t seem to shake off his irrepressible persona as a smooth-talking womaniser. Romance and comedy ensue.
“I got the script late one night and read it straight through,” Brie explains. “I thought it was totally fantastic. I met with Leslye the next day and basically charmed her until she agree to give me the part.”
It might read like a line, but Brie is so utterly charismatic on the phone from the UK that it’s completely believable. A big fan of Headland’s previous film Bachelorette (2012) — a dark comedy with an all-female ensemble, including Rebel Wilson, Kirsten Dunst and Isla Fisher — Brie was excited to work with the playwright, director and screenwriter. The experience, she says, lived up to her expectations.
Read more at Junkee.