“I love love stories.”
So says Jim Strouse, writer and director of the new romantic comedy Love Again. Starring Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Sam Heughan, and Celine Dion (playing herself in her first film role), and featuring multiple new songs from Dion, Love Again opens exclusively in SM Cinemas on May 10.
“This felt like a fantastic opportunity to tell a classic, romantic story that was hugely relevant,” says producer Erica Lee. “I loved the idea that for these characters, these text messages sent into the ether become the magical thing that brings them together.”
In Love Again, Mira Ray (Priyanka Chopra Jonas), a talented children’s book author and illustrator, deals with the loss of her fiancé by sending a series of romantic texts to his old cell phone number. What Mira doesn’t know is that those texts are being received by Rob Burns (played by Sam Heughan), whose new work phone has inherited that old number. Rob, a music journalist, is skeptical about love – it comes with the territory when you are left at the altar. He is struck by the emotional honesty of the texts, which begin just as he is trying to wrap his cynical mind around the heartfelt, emotional music of Celine Dion for a profile he’s been assigned. He finds that the legendary singer just might hold the key to all the answers he’s been looking for.
The filmmakers built the film around the pairing of Chopra Jonas, an international superstar who has commanded screens around the world, as Mira, and Sam Heughan, whose performance on Outlander has inspired a generation of fans, as Rob.
But perhaps the biggest casting coup for the filmmakers was in landing Celine Dion to play the role of Celine Dion in the songstress’s first big-screen acting role.
“I wanted to find a real artist to embody the character,” says Strouse. “When I thought about Celine’s songs – the content of them and then Celine the person – it was so perfect, because this is a film about overcoming loss and the power of love. She was the first and only choice.”
Dion’s involvement in the movie brought an infectious joy to the entire cast and crew. “It was so much fun,” says producer Esther Hornstein. “We’d play a little bit of one of her songs for a scene, and then all day, we’d all be sitting at the monitors singing Celine. For one scene, Rob is in the shower, so excited about life that he’s singing ‘It’s All Coming Back to Me Now’ – and when Sam would come off the set, he’d still be singing – a sing-along party all day long.”
Love Again is distributed in the Philippines by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. Connect with the hashtag #LoveAgainMovie