If romantic comedies have taught us anything, it’s that true relationship magic is forged in the fires of attraction, opportunity and, in many cases, rage.
In the movies it’s what’s known as a ‘meet-cute’, a scene where our leading characters meet in a memorable way that often leads to a clash of personalities or a wry misunderstanding that ends up driving the plot forward and forcing them to form an unbreakable bond.
For Top End Wedding stars Miranda Tapsell and Gwilym Lee, their meet-cute took place on a cold dark day in London, with Miranda fresh off an exhaustive long-haul flight and Gwilym having little to no knowledge of the romantic comedy realm or what awaited him in Australia.
However, just moments into their ‘chemistry test’ and the actors knew instantly that they’d forged the type of bond that would allow them to fall in love on screen against the backdrop of the Northern Territory.
In Top End Wedding, Miranda and Gwilym play Lauren and Ned, a newly engaged couple who head to her hometown of Darwin to pull off their dream wedding in just ten days. They arrive to discover that Lauren’s mother has gone missing and so embark on a cross-country adventure to find her.
“Miranda was on holiday and travelling around Europe, she was going to be in London and so very kindly gave up her morning to meet me,” Welsh actor Gwilym told Mamamia.
“I was just jetlagged and grumbly and then our casting director practically begged me to meet Gwilym,” Miranda confirmed. “When I finally arrived and met him I just thought ‘I’m an idiot’. Why would I not want to meet Gwilym?
“I remember breaking out of character in the audition. I was meant to be supporting him through this but he just brought so much compassion and naivety to the role, I was seeing that character come to life before me right now.”
Watch Mamamia Entertainment Editor Laura Brodnik talk to Miranda Tapsell and Gwilym Lee about filming Australia’s new favourite rom-c0m.
For successful Australian actress Miranda, Top End Wedding was very much a labour of love, intertwining her love of storytelling with her desire to show off her home state. A region of Australia that rarely gets its turn in the spotlight on the big screen.
“As a Territory girl I really took my hometown for granted, as many teenagers do,” the 31-year-old The Sapphires star said. “So camping and hiking were just not a novelty for me, I wanted to go out to the big smoke and make something of myself, particularly in acting. So when making this movie I just really wanted to remind myself why the Territory is so special. Seeing it through new eyes, particularly Gwilym’s, who had never been there before, I had forgotten how powerful home is,” she said.