8:30pm Monday, January 11 on TV One
The adventure of a lifetime becomes the journey from hell in TV ONE’s Sunday Theatre: Losing Gemma (tonight at 8.30pm).
Two unlikely travelling companions are thrown together when their mutual friend has an accident the night before they leave for India. Adventurous loner Esther (Alice Eve, The Rotters’ Club) wants to get a taste of real travel and leave her old life behind, while Gemma (Rachel Leskovac, Holby City), who has just split from her boyfriend Steve (Jonas Armstong, Robin Hood), is more interested in recreating the famous shot of Princess Diana at the Taj Mahal.
Once they arrive, Esther suggests they go their separate ways, but Gemma is terrified of travelling alone. The trip takes a deadly turn when the pair befriend the charming, but ominous couple Zac (Jason Flemyng, Layer Cake) and Coral (Koël Purie, Dirty War), and Gemma persuades a reluctant Esther they should join the pair on their travels. Events spiral out of control and Gemma mysteriously disappears. As Esther struggles to make sense of what’s going on, police discover a body, and to her horror, Esther is accused of murder.
Talking to the BBC, Rachel Leskovac says Losing Gemma offers considerable humour within its conventional thriller plot. “It’s just really good fun. The beauty of what [writer] Robert Murphy does is he weaves in humour with the dark side.”
Much of the humour comes from Leskovac’s own character, a loud, impetuous and utterly tactless woman whose basic agenda for the holiday is sun and men. “Her brashness, I just found really funny,” says Leskovac. “She says things without thinking, she’s always ready to offer advice – I probably watched Trisha far too many times.”
The actress admits she can be similarly frank, and says when she read the script she instantly thought, ‘I know I can do this’. “Strangely, I warmed to her, so hopefully other people will. She’s a bit of a spoilt brat really, but she means well,” she says.
Part two of Losing Gemma screens Monday 11 January, 8.35pm.