Amanda Holden teases return to acting, says there’s lots of things in the pipeline
As Amanda Holden stars in Neighbours this week, she teases a return to acting.
The Britain’s Got Talent judge tells us, “There's lots of things in the pipeline for me this year, acting wise, which is going to be brilliant.”
Her last big roles were in the ITV safari drama Wild at Heart and the hit hairdresser series Cutting It.
But first up is playing the glamorous aunt of Harlow, who comes to London to find out more about her dead mother Prue (played by another Brit, Denise van Outen and killed in a bomb explosion). She's the latest British star to appear on the soap.
“She’s really fun,” says Amanda about her character. “They sent over a few lines and the premise of the plot, and the fact that she was this well put together, glamorous lady – that's always going to get me! They explained that there was going to be a bit of a twist and she isn't all she seems to be.”
These London episodes come shortly before the Australian stops airing in the UK after 37 years in June.
Amanda tells us more about her surprising link to Jemma Donovan who plays Harlow, why she won’t sign up for a soap, and spills on the “huge Hollywood actor” who made her “lose it”.
Hi Amanda, how did it all come about you joining Neighbours?
I don't really know why they thought of me for Harriet, but I've always been a fan of Neighbours. I was one of the people who used to rush home from school to watch it. It's just a brilliant thing to do, especially now that the show is being rested. I was so disappointed not to be able to do it when they first asked, so to be able to be part of it now is such a thrill. And also, to be in the Donovan clan, I feel like an adopted member! Just to be on the periphery of Neighbours royalty is good enough for me.
What was it like working with Jemma?
She's gorgeous. The amount of times people stopped to ask, "Is that your daughter, Amanda?". We do look quite similar. We've both got kind of quite high foreheads and little round faces! She's just so cool and so sweet, and I know her dad, obviously, very well. I love him and the whole family, so it was just so brilliant to be part of it all. And just so camp!
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Had you met Jemma before?
I've met her when she was a little girl, but not as a grown woman. So, it is weird when you see your friend’s daughter in a work situation all those years later. I’ve known Jason for a long time. He won’t remember this but when he was a pop star, I queued up when I was 21, just to get his autograph when he was in Joseph. He did a squiggle! I was such a huge Kylie and Jason fan.
What are your memories of watching Neighbours?
Always the wedding. I also remember when Helen Daniels passed away. And then when plain Jane super brain revealed her gorgeousness.
I have to say, I lost it at Kylie's 50th when Mike from Neighbours was there, Guy Pearce. I acted really cool and he would never have known, but I was like, "Oh, my God. It's Mike from Neighbours." He's got a huge Hollywood career now, but he’ll always be Mike to me!
It was all those kinds of moments. And when different characters, like Madge married Harold. I loved it all. I've got a friend in Ireland who is beside herself that I am in this show. She just can't believe it. She's like their super fan!
You’ve had a taste of being a soap star, have you got the bug for it?
No, I wouldn't go that far! I've got a very comfy life doing all my lovely stuff. There's lots of things in the pipeline for me this year, acting wise, which is going to be brilliant. I don't know about soap; they work so hard and it's such a fast turnaround.
The Neighbours in London episodes will air from Monday 28th – Wednesday 30th March at 1:45pm and 6pm on Channel 5.
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