Jessica Simpson’s new memoir, Open Book, is filled with intimate and emotional revelations about the singer/fashion mogul’s life. From her struggles with alcohol and decision to get sober to traumatic sexual abuse as a child, nothing is off limits. “For me to write a book, I wanted people to know how vulnerable I was and how caught I felt, because so many people get caught in that web,” she told Glamour. (You can read an exclusive excerpt here.)
But there are many lighter details about her life in the book, too—including a tidbit about one of the most beloved romantic movies ever, The Notebook. Turns out, Simpson was actually offered the role of Allie, which eventually went to Rachel McAdams. But she turned it down because of the movie’s now-famous sex scene. “I knew exactly what the movie was about because I had read the script,” she writes in her book, but the people behind the movie “wouldn’t budge” about removing the sex scene.
Her decision was apparently made even more difficult thanks to Ryan Gosling‘s casting as Noah, because she’d had a crush on him since the ’90s when she auditioned for The Mickey Mouse Club. “[The movie] would have been with Ryan Gosling, of all people,” she wrote. She did, eventually, see the movie—at a pretty inopportune moment in her personal life: Simpson was in the midst of a very public split with her then-husband, Nick Lachey. “Oh God, I thought,” she wrote. “The most romantic movie in the world, and I was leaving Nick. The movie was on every screen, and I was swept up into it, wishing I had that great love that would be forever.”
Of her breakup with Lachey, Simpson said she felt she “let people down. People looked to us as the trophy couple and I was the trophy wife, even though I didn’t know how to use the Swiffer. I tried; like, I mean I was not Betty Crocker and we all know that, but I tried.”
Like so many tough things in life, it appears that everything, ultimately, worked out for Jessica Simpson—both onscreen and off.