Portraying real love. Joey King and Kyle Allen call their movie The In Between, a love story even amid the tragedy that strikes their characters, Tessa and Skylar. But, of course, certain things separate their Paramount+ film from other teen movies of the same genre.

“Not to be morbid, but one of us dies. OK, that’s terrible,” Joey, 22, told J-14 exclusively. “This movie, it is different. It is so romantic. It’s so beautiful because you find in this movie that, even after a tragic event happens in a relationship, there’s still a way to keep that love alive.”

In the movie — based on the novel of the same name by Marc Klein — Joey’s Tessa and Kyle’s Skylar fall head-over-heels in love with each other. When Skylar is killed in a tragic accident, he and Tessa are able to connect before in a world between life and death.

“I knew it would be difficult to pull off, but I also knew it would make the read so much more exciting,” Marc told J-14 exclusively about his idea behind this untraditional love story. “Most love stories begin at the beginning when the couple meets. But The In Between begins at the end, when Skylar dies. This forced me to be inventive with the emotional journey. After all, how do you sustain a love story when one of the characters is dead?”

Even though, fans are used to seeing Joey in various love-focused projects — like the three Kissing Booth movies — she loved getting a chance to try something new.

“I enjoy just doing like lots of different kinds of roles and projects,” the actress explained. “I feel more jazzed when I don’t stick to one thing necessarily. It makes me really excited when I get to play all kinds of different people.”

Joey King and Kyle Allen Detail the 'Tragic' Love Story in 'The In Between': 'One of Us Dies'
Tina Rowden/Paramount+

Other than starring in the film, Joey was a producer alongside The In Between‘s author, who also wrote the movie. He referred to the Ramona and Beezus star as his “creative partner from the get-go,” telling J-14 exclusively that the character of Tessa was “written and crafted for her.”

Marc explained: “When it came to casting, we agreed the most important element was finding a Skylar whom she had romantic chemistry with. We all saw Kyle Allen’s audition tape and flipped out for him. He has so much heart — and you can see the intelligence and sensitivity in his eyes, all the things we needed for Skylar.”

Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, Joey and Kyle were unable to meet for a “chemistry read,” so Marc explained that “it was undoubtedly a risk” casting him at first. “Thankfully, Joey and Kyle were instant best friends,” the author added. “Their onscreen chemistry was just an extension of their offscreen chemistry.”

Joey also spoke highly of her costar.

“He was so amazing to work with on this movie. I think that us together, bringing these characters to life was just so great,” she said, noting that amid the casting process, she “loved him immediately.”

The In Between is available for streaming via Paramount+ on Friday, February 11.

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