Coronation Street, Hollyoaks, Emmerdale

Our first look at soapy news is over at Corrie, where former Street star Suranne Jones has been telling Holy Soap that she thinks Steve McDonald (Simon Gregson) will probably never find happiness with the women in his life!

Suranne of course starred as Karen, who was married to Steve until Suranne left the show in 2004. Suranne is currently starring in new detective drama Scott & Bailey, but she took time out of her schedule to talk about poor old Steve’s doomed love life!

She said, “He always goes for the typically crazy women – but if he settles down with someone like Clare Peacock, say, that wouldn’t last two minutes.

“I don’t think he needs a soft-hearted woman. He’d want a bit of spice in his life.

“I think the whole point of Steve is that he goes after women that are like his mother…

“Liz McDonald wore a few short skirts and had a mouth on her so I think he’s doomed for that kind of woman.

“Maybe he’ll get with one of the younger girls – that’s a bit mad. Young Tina or something like that, who knows?”

Next up is news from Hollyoaks with Rachel Shenton claiming she’s “nothing like” her ‘Oaks character Mitzeee.

She told Inside Soap, “I don’t really wear make-up that often, and don’t tend to do anything with my hair.

“Mitzeee spends hours doing her make-up and I couldn’t think of anything worse.

“At first it was a novelty, but that wears off when you get called in at 6.45 every morning!”

And finally, over to Emmerdale where former star Lyndon Ogbourne has hinted that he could be returning to the show to reprise his role as Nathan Wylde.

We last saw Lyndon as Nathan late last year when he was run out of the village after everyone shunned him for trying to frame his half-brother Ryan Lamb for the murder of their father Mark.

However, on Twitter, Lyndon recently wrote… “I’m over the moon!!! Thanks for all your messages wishing me back in Emmerdale nice to know I’m missed…

“I had a lovely chat with the ED exec producer today…..things could be brewing….but for now and pre US projects I’m off on tour!! Whoop! (sic)”

He later tweeted, “Thankyou for all your congratulatory messages!

“What an exciting day it’s been, glad I could share my happy news with you!”

More soapy news and goss soon!

New Emmerdale character, Max & OB back in Chester, and David Essex’ newbie nerves!

We’ll start our look at the soapy news over at Emmerdale, where it’s been announced that there’s to be a new character who’ll be played by Gemma Oaten…

The Sun reports that the new character is Rachel Breckle, who’ll arrive in the village during July with her young niece.

Gemma has been cast just days after it was announced that the show’s bosses had axed the characters Mia Macey, Ella Hart, Roz Fielding and Scarlett Nicholls.

Gemma, who has previously appeared in Doctors, said landing the part is “a dream come true”.

And the show’s Executive Producer Stuart Blackburn said, “Rachel will ruffle a few feathers with her straight-talking approach…

“But beneath the surface she is fiercely loyal with a heart of gold.”

Over to Hollyoaks now where the PA report that Matt Littler and Darren Jeffries – who are better known as former Hollyoaks residents Max and OB – are returning to Chester to front their own show, The Hollyoaks Music Show.

“We’re stupidly excited to be going back to Hollyoaks village,” the pair joked, adding, “This new series of the Music Show is going to be the best yet and we really cannot wait to get involved.”

Each episode will feature pop’s hottest acts and showcase the rising talent of 2011, with early episodes including Peter Andre, The Wombats, Parade, Tinchy Stryder and Dappy from N Dubz, Ed Sheeran and Example.

Lee Hardman, the show’s executive producer said, “We’re delighted that The Hollyoaks Music Show is back for a third series and we’re already excited about the new line-up!”

The Hollyoaks Music Show, in association with Matalan.co.uk, consists of 12 half-hour shows and three 30 minute ‘best of’ editions, which will be broadcast from Saturday, June 11.

And finally, over in EastEnders, David Essex has revealed that joining the cast of the show was “daunting.”

David, who of course will play Alfie Moon’s uncle Eddie, added that he was warmly welcomed by the cast, so that made it easier for him to settle in.

Speaking to Digital Spy, David said, “Some of the cast have been here for more than 20 years, so it’s like coming into a new school.

“But they’ve been tremendously respectful and very welcoming. Jake Wood, who plays Max, has been my mentor.

“I haven’t worked with any of the cast before as it’s a world that I haven’t been involved in, but that’s what makes it quite interesting for me.

“And since I’ve started, I’ve worked with almost everyone in the cast now.

“It’s a lot of work to start off with because you’re basically introducing yourself to the show, so it’s been fast and furious, but it’s been enjoyable.”

We’ll get to see David on-screen for the first time on Monday.

More soapy news soon!

The PA reports today that despite being the envy of many female fans of Hollyoaks, both Jennifer Metcalfe and Claire Cooper both have issues with how they look.

Here’s the report…

Hollyoaks stars Jennifer Metcalfe and Claire Cooper may look flawless, but just like the rest of us they have issues with their bodies.

Jennifer, better known as Mercedes Fisher, was so upset about the size and shape of her hips that she underwent liposuction last year, and is now far happier about how she looks.

She told Inside Soap: “I think surgery is a really personal decision that only you can make. If there’s something on your body you really don’t like, it doesn’t matter if your mother doesn’t see it or your boyfriend doesn’t see it – it’s what you feel comfortable with.”

Claire, who plays Jacqui McQueen, is more concerned with what she wears – and isn’t a fan of her alter ego’s dowdy style.

“I’d describe Jacqui’s style as hideous,” said the actress. “My look has changed over the years, but now I know what I like and what suits my body shape.

“I’ve got quite an athletic figure and don’t have very big boobs, so I go for something that flatters me and might add a little curve.”

New logo and theme tune for Emmerdale, Richard Winsor made welcome at Hollyoaks, and Corrie star convicted of fraud!

We’ll start our look at the soapy news with Emmerdale, where it’s been revealed that as of Monday, the show has a new theme tune and a new opening sequence.

The Daily Star says that the show’s bosses decided it needed a more contemporary feel, so they hope the new opening sequence will “modernise” it.

Emmerdale’s executive producer, Steve November, said, “Emmerdale has a unique voice and we wanted to reinforce that by giving it a fresher, more contemporary feel.”

In other news, over at Hollyoaks, newcomer Richard Winsor has revealed how pleased he was with the reception from his co-stars when he arrived for his first day of filming on the show.

Richard is taking the role of a “hunky priest”, Father Francis, who’ll have a flirtation with Carmel McQueen (Gemma Merna) who’ll tell the cleric that she’s lost her faith and hopes he can renew it!

On the Hollyoaks website, Richard said, “I didn’t know what to expect [on the set] but I turned up on my first day to a very warm welcome.

“The entire cast and crew are so friendly and supportive. Father Francis is in safe hands!”

We’ll see Richard as Father Francis in July.

Our final bit of news and goss comes from Corrie where former Street actor Ian Mercer – who played Gary Mallett – has been found guilty of benefit fraud.

The Sun reports that he, “falsely claimed £2,300 for council tax” and was caught following a tip off to authorities that he was claiming benefits, despite currently working on the new Pirates of the Caribbean movie.

The paper adds, “But he also failed to reveal selling a £200,000 house, magistrates in Bedlington, Northumberland, heard.”

It seems Mercer claimed the benefit for a rented house in Pegswood. He was fined £165.

More soapy news soon!

Coronation Street, Hollyoaks, Emmerdale

Corrie actress Kym Marsh has revealed that she was “annoyed” that Coronation Street wasn’t as lauded for its awards as EastEnders was at the recent British Soap Awards.

Kym, who of course plays Michelle Connor in Corrie, wrote in her New magazine column, “it wasn’t the best awards do [she’s] ever been to”.

She added, “I was a bit annoyed that everyone focused on EastEnders winning ‘Best Soap’.

“What about the nine awards that Corrie picked up?!”

In other soap news, Hollyoaks has a new cast member in the form of movie actor Richard Winsor, who’s to play the role of a “hunky priest”.

Richard, whose acting credits include hit movie, The StreetDance 3D, will play Father Francis who will have an attraction to Carmel McQueen, who’s of course played by Gemma Merna.

A show insider told The Sun, “Viewers will be desperate for Carmel and Father Francis to get together.

“It will be a really sweet will they/won’t they storyline.”

Richard will first appear on the show in July, and he told the paper how delighted he was to have landed the role.

He said, “I didn’t know what to expect but I turned up on my first day to a very warm welcome.

“The entire cast and crew are so friendly and supportive. Father Francis is in safe hands.”

And finally, over to Emmerdale where Charley Webb has revealed that there’s to be a lengthy storyline surrounding Debbie Dingle’s pregnancy.

While appearing on This Morning, Charley said, “This is kind of the start of a storyline that is going to develop in many ways and go on for quite a while.

“So this is just the beginning, really.”

And the show’s executive producer, Steve November, told Digital Spy earlier this year that “Debbie’s story will be huge.”

He added, “I think it’ll be a big talking point. It will really challenge the characters and challenge the viewers…

“It’s a fantastic story that will really touch Debbie and everyone around her.”

More soapy news soon!

HOLLYWOOD HUNK JOINS HOLLYOAKS Hollyoaks welcomes another hunky addition this summer with the arrival of Father Francis.

The role will be played by critically acclaimed dancer and Hollywood hottie Richard Winsor. Carmel McQueen (Gemma Merna) can’t quite believe her eyes when Father Francis makes an appearance in Hollyoaks village.

Sexy, rugged and religious, Father Francis is everything Carmel yearns for. However, never one to miss a trick, she strongly believes that he has been sent to test her faith. She remains determined not to fail, but sin has never been so attractive.

Will Carmel take a bite from the apple off the tree? Richard Windsor comments on settling in to life at Hollyoaks, “I didn’t know what to expect but I turned up on my first day to a very warm welcome. The entire cast and crew are so friendly and supportive. Father Francis is in safe hands…!”

The British actor rose to stardom last summer playing ‘Tomas’ in the hit British film Streetdance 3D. The movie star has also made his mark on Broadway working closely with award winning choreographer Matthew Bourne.

Richard has starred in a number of Bourne’s productions including travelling the world as ‘Edward’ in Bourne’s hugely successful Edward Scissorhands. His most recent role saw Richard perform as ‘the Swan’ in Matthew Bourne’s Swan Lake.

If that isn’t enough to tickle your tastebuds, Elle magazine voted Richard ‘sexiest dancer in the world’ last year! Richard can be seen on screen at the beginning of July when Father Francis makes his first impression on Carmel McQueen.

Plus Kieron Richardson talks Noah and Brendan

Digital Spy today reports exclusively that three members of the show’s cast are leaving. Alex Carter, Dean Aspen and Ashley Margolis will all leave the show before the end of the year.

Speaking to DS about his decision to leave, Alex said, “After ten years in soap, it feels like the right time to find out what else is out there.

“I’m so grateful to Hollyoaks for giving me my first break and I’ll be gutted to leave behind some really good friends that I’ve made in the cast and crew…

“But I’m sure I’ll keep in touch with the ones I like!”

And speaking about his departure, Dean said, “I have had an absolutely brilliant time playing Duncan – I feel like Hollyoaks have paid me to laugh.

“But, after two years, I really feel the time is right for a new challenge. I will be very sad to leave…

“But hopefully the door will be left open and you just don’t know what could happen in the future. I’d love to think Duncan could return.”

And Ashley added, “I’m not sure if I’m crazy or brave but yes, I think it’s time for me as an actor to move on.

“I could very happily stay forever in my comfort zone – Hollyoaks is a great place to work. But with Dean moving on it just feels like the right time.

“Ricky has been a great character and I’ve learnt a lot in two and a half years. Landing a role on Hollyoaks at 15 was a dream in itself but I’ve always wanted to have a broad acting career so it’s now or never.”

Details of storylines for their exits have yet to be revealed.

In other Hollyoaks news, Kieron Richardson has been talking to Soaplife about Ste’s new relationship with Noah, and his ongoing attachment to bad boy Brendan…

Soaplife adds, “After months of being battered and manipulated by Brendan, Ste is enjoying his relationship with Noah and standing up for himself.”

Kieron said, “Noah is like a breath of fresh air to Ste. Noah is good-looking and not scared to be openly gay.”

And when asked, “What has Ste told Noah about Brendan?”, Kieron replied, “He’s obviously talked about him, but he hasn’t told him that Brendan abused him.

“I think he’s embarrassed about it. Ste was a macho guy once and the fact that he let his boyfriend beat him makes him feel less of a man.”

Soaplfe then asked, “Will he ever escape Brendan’s hold on him?” to which Kieron replied, “No and I don’t think he wants to.

“Neither do I, because it would mean I wouldn’t be working with Emmett [Scanlan, who plays Brendan] any more.

“I think the connection that Brendan and Ste have will remain, no matter who they’re with.”

More ‘Oaks news soon!

Emmett Scanlan, who of course plays baddie Brendan Brady on Hollyoaks, has revealed the he’d intended for fans to hate his character, but it’s turned out that everyone loves him!

Speaking during an interview for the show’s official website, Emmett said, “My aim was to make Brendan Brady the most hated man in England and, funnily enough, the more wacky I make him, the more people love him.

“That in itself is a testament to how well written a character he is. I’d just like to see more from him, I’d like to keep exploring and see what else is lurking in there.”

And while discussing the success he’s had on the show, and the British Soap Awards he won last week, Emmett said, “It’s nice to get paid for it this time – as opposed to being a villain off-screen and not getting paid for it.

“No, it’s an absolute honour. The fact that Brendan Brady has struck a chord with the public out there is amazing.”

We’ll start our look at soapy news with Emmerdale, where Charley Webb has been telling Soaplife that a baby is just about the last thing her character Debbie Dingle wants right now.

Debbie is of course living with boyfriend Cameron, but now she’s worried that she can’t trust him.

Charley said, “She’s having doubts again, especially when she sees him flirting with Eve.

“She’s back to not knowing if she can trust him.”

And when asked who Debbie tells first that she’s pregnant, Charley said, “Chas and her mum Charity. They’re both totally shocked because Debbie’s not excited about it.

“Instead she’s going, ‘I’m pregnant, it wasn’t supposed to happen, what am I going to do?'”

Charley then discussed Cameron’s reaction when Debbie tells him the news.

She said, “He doesn’t say much at first which makes her think that definitely things aren’t right.

“He’s actually in shock, but Debbie has no patience with him and storms off.”

And finally, when asked if Debbie and Cameron can make it as a couple, Charley said, “I hope so. I think they make a really good couple.

“He’s left his family behind which is a massive, massive thing to do. Cameron’s been very upset about that – it wasn’t an easy thing to do.

“Debbie’s been upset about it, too. It’s always going to be there in Debbie’s head – that he abandoned his kids and his wife – and Debbie feels terrible about that.”

Over to Hollyoaks now, and Emmett Scanlan has confirmed that he and his co-star Claire Cooper are dating.

Emmett, who of course plays Brendan Brady, has been unofficially dating Claire – who plays Jacqui McQueen – since late last year, but the couple kept their relationship under wraps until recently.

Speaking to the Liverpool Echo, Emmett said that he was initially attracted to Claire’s professionalism.

He said, “Claire is great. She’s been in Hollyoaks for more than four years and she’s one of the strongest actresses.

“We share a similar love for acting. It’s great to have that common ground. I call her Jaffa because I joke she looks like a Jaffa Cake.

“I thought she was a top actress and that’s what massively attracted me to her as a person.”

And finally over to Corrie, and former Street star John Savident – who played Fred Elliott – says he doesn’t watch the show anymore.

In an interview with the Manchester Evening News, John also criticised some of the younger cast members saying, “Honestly I rarely watch Corrie now. Some of the young people just want to be on screen and have no ambition to act elsewhere…

“What future do they have when their contract ends?

“One of them asked me who this Laurence Olivier was I was talking about as he’d never heard of him!

“Olivier was my hero and I had the honour of working with him on a couple of occasions.”

John added that he has few regrets about leaving the show, but added the he misses some of his co-stars.

He said, “Apart from missing all my friends in the Street, particularly the lovely Sue Nicholls who is such a lady, Bill Roache and the wonderful Betty Driver.

“Now most of my other friends have also left like Steven Arnold (Ashley) and Julia Haworth (Claire) who were the loveliest family. At least they were given plenty of notice.”

More Corrie news soon!

The Daily Mirror today reports that former Hollyoaks and I’m A Celebrity, Get Me Out of Here star Gemma Atkinson has joined the cast of BBC1 drama, Casualty.

Here’s the Mirror’s article in full…

Celebrity star Gemma Atkinson is joining Casualty as a glamorous paramedic.

The lads’ mag pin-up, 26, was chosen by BBC producers in an attempt to sex up the long-running hospital soap.

Gemma, who used to appear in Hollyoaks, will play Tamzin and is expected to cause a bit of a stir among the A&E’s male doctors and workers.

Scrubbing up alongside her will be Sex and the City 2 star Dhafer L’Abidine in the role of competitive paramedic Omar.

Producer Oliver Kent said: “Tamzin is going to bring a touch of glamour to the paramedic team and set some hearts racing in the emergency department while Omar’s melting roadside manner is going to raise the temperatures of Holby’s female patients.”

Gemma, best known as Lisa Hunter in Channel 4’s Hollyoaks, is currently appearing as Miss September in Calendar Girls in the West End.

She has had a string of famous boyfriends including footballers Cristiano Ronaldo and Marcus Bent, who she was once engaged to.

She is currently dating Liam Richards, a finalist on 2008’s Britain’s Got Talent with martial arts act Strike.

The curvy Manchester lass is also a magazine favourite – although she has now put her modelling days behind her. She jumped at the chance of appearing in Casualty, even though it means wearing a high-visibility jacket.

Gemma said yesterday: “I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the show and really looking forward to getting to know all the cast and crew.

“I used to watch it as a child so to be involved is fantastic.”

Tunisian-born actor Dhafer starred alongside Sarah Jessica Parker and Kim Cattrall as Sheikh Mahmoud in Sex and the City 2.

He has also appeared in high-profile British dramas including Wallander and Wire in the Blood.

Gemma and Dhafer start filming on Casualty this month and will appear on screen from September. Now in its 25th year, BBC1’s Casualty is the world’s longest-running primetime medical drama.

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