Britney Spears’ never-before-seen audition tape for The Notebook with Ryan Gosling released

Britney Spears in 2002, the year she auditioned for The Notebook.

Rachel McAdams and Ryan Gosling lit up the screen with 2004’s The Notebook, but the quintessential romantic drama film almost had an entirely different leading lady – one Miss Britney Spears.

Britney Spears is reclaiming her narrative in her highly anticipated memoir The Woman in Me after being liberated from her damaging 13-year-long conservatorship in November 2021.

The autobiography – which hit bookshelves on Tuesday (24 October) – lifts the lid behind the biggest moments in the pop star’s career including stories from during her conservatorship and intimate revelations from her dating life.

    As well as recounting her early forays into acting after landing the role of Lucy in the 2002 drama Crossroads, the star revealed that she was in final running to play Allie Hamilton in the hit 2004 adaptation of The Notebook.

    Now, a newly-released video from August 2002, shared by Hollywood casting director Matthew Sparks exclusively with the Daily Mail, shows Britney’s jaw-dropping audition opposite Ryan Gosling.

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    The singer beat out huge talent such as Claire Danes, Scarlett Johansson, Jessica Biel and Amy Adams to make it to the final stages, before eventually losing out to Mean Girls star McAdams.

    Rachel McAdams ultimately landed the role.
    Rachel McAdams ultimately landed the role. (New Line Cinema)

    In the video, Britney is seen acting out the famous scene where Allie tells Gosling’s character Noah (who is off-screen) that she is getting married to another man.

    “I’m not staying,” Britney announces. “I tried to call you to tell you that I wasn’t going to stay — but nobody answered the phone… Noah, you can’t marry two people. And I’m marrying Lon, so I should go, okay?”

    In a moment of raw motion, Britney wells up as she delivers the rest of the heart-wrenching monologue.

    “I prayed for you to die in the war, really,” Britney continued. “Well, not die. I would have felt completely horrible if you would die.

    “But I kinda didn’t want you to be alive anymore because I couldn’t bear the thought of you being with somebody else, or of us never seeing each other again. So I gotta go, okay?”

    “Britney wasn’t just good – she was phenomenal,” Barry told the Daily Mail. “It was a tough decision. Britney blew us all away. Our jaws were on the floor. I was blown away. Absolutely blown away. She brought her A-game that day.”

    Luckily, Britney doesn’t seem too hung up on losing out on the role as she reflected on the whole process in her memoir. According to Britney she was put off the entire acting profession after losing herself in her Crossroads role.

    “I imagine there are people in the acting field who have dealt with something like that, where they had trouble separating themselves from a character,” she wrote.

    “I hope I never get close to that occupational hazard again. Living that way, being half yourself and half a fictional character, is messed up. After a while you don’t know what’s real anymore.”

    The Woman in Me is available to buy in bookstores now.