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'Hollyoaks': James Sutton on John Paul's baby shock, future plots

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James Sutton as John Paul McQueen in Hollyoaks

© Lime Pictures

James Sutton as John Paul McQueen



Hollyoaks' John Paul McQueen faces the possibility of losing his baby son Matthew next week as the youngster's mother Chloe threatens to take him away.

Chloe arrives in the village looking for money from John Paul, and when he refuses to part with any cash, she has no qualms about using Matthew as a bargaining chip to get what she wants.

Digital Spy recently caught up with James Sutton, who plays John Paul, to hear about the storyline and what's ahead for his character in the longer-term.

Did you enjoy filming this latest twist for John Paul?
"Yeah, it was great! We had a lovely young Irish actress, Susan Loughnane, who came in to play Chloe and we had a great time filming together. The scenes were shot pretty quickly, so it felt like Susan was in and out, but it was a great deal of fun and I'm looking forward to seeing it myself. We were pleased with the work we did, so fingers crossed it'll look alright!"

Can you remind us of John Paul's history with Chloe?
"Chloe was one of John Paul's best friends over in Ireland, when he was living there with Craig. She's a bit nuts and she's one of those people who gets herself into tricky situations. John Paul has a lot of history with her, and he's probably had to bail her out of some other tough situations in the past.

"This time, Chloe turns up in the village and tells John Paul that she wants to be part of Matthew's life. That's a bit bizarre to John Paul because she dumped Matthew on his doorstep at Christmas!"

What happens next?
"John Paul doesn't really believe what Chloe is saying, and eventually it transpires that she just wants money from him. She's got herself into some trouble over in Ireland and needs some cash pretty quickly. Chloe thinks that John Paul will provide for her because she's the mother of his child, but he's very quick to tell her that he doesn't owe her anything.

"There are some fairly heated conversations, so in the end, Chloe warns that if John Paul can't provide the money she'll have to take Matthew and go back over to Ireland."

John Paul is shocked to see Chloe.

© Lime Pictures

John Paul is shocked to see Chloe.



Chloe tells John Paul that Craig is Matthew's biological father, doesn't she?
"Yes, that's a big part of her ultimatum. She's got a DNA test proving that Craig is the father, which means John Paul doesn't have any rights to Matthew even though he has now bonded with the child. The possibility of losing Matthew is heartbreaking for John Paul, so he does everything he can to get the £5,000 that Chloe is asking for."

Is it tricky to come up with the cash?
"Well, John Paul even swallows his pride and goes to Frankie Osborne for help. That's quite a big deal because they obviously don't like each other very much! Frankie says that she'll give him the money, but Matthew would have to live with her in the pub.

"John Paul's not happy to do that at all, so he gets a bit of money together himself and goes and gives it to Chloe. Unfortunately it's not enough, so you'll have to wait and see how Chloe reacts to that…"

How have you found portraying John Paul as a father this time around?
"It's been great. It's definitely been different, but obviously when I came back to Hollyoaks, it was never going to be the same John Paul that we knew before. The angst and the 'coming of age' story is over, so now we're seeing him as a much more mature character. I've enjoyed exploring that, and the added responsibility of John Paul having a child now brings its own problems!

"It's lovely working with a baby, working in the school and portraying a teacher. I've had some nice scenes where younger characters have gone to John Paul for advice, such as Esther and Phoebe. The shoe was on the other foot last time - John Paul was the one approaching others for advice when his life was messed up!"

Chloe's arrival shocks everyone.

© Lime Pictures

Chloe's arrival shocks everyone.



Do you think John Paul and Danny could become a good couple?
"I do - Danny's got a glint in his eye, hasn't he? He's very confident and assured, so he's got that swagger that John Paul finds attractive. That's what he wants from a relationship now, as John Paul is past all of the closeted hiding away. He just wants an easy life, and hopefully Danny is the person to offer that.

"It's obviously the case that Danny has got many secrets and various things that he hasn't let on about yet, so John Paul is pretty likely to get caught up in that in the future. For John Paul to be happy, he's going to have to overcome some things that perhaps Danny hasn't been completely honest about…"

Would you have liked the John Paul and Doug romance to have gone on for longer?
"I certainly liked working with PJ [Brennan], though it's not really for me to say whether John Paul and Doug should have been together for longer - that's up to the storyliners and the scriptwriters. I do think that myself and PJ worked really well together, though.

"I've been very lucky and blessed with the people I've been put with during my two stints on the show. First time around, I was lucky to be working with Guy Burnet and Jake Hendriks, and second time around I've done some lovely stuff with PJ and Stephen Billington. I'm not quite sure what I've done to deserve it!"

We've heard a lot about your big storyline coming up, and the fans are wondering whether it's still happening. Is there something big brewing?
"Yeah, there is. I do have a big storyline coming up, and it is the storyline that I possibly shouldn't have teased when I first came back! (Laughs.) When I first spoke about it, I wasn't sure on the timeframe so I probably revealed it a bit too early. It was never intended to be straight away, as John Paul was always going to have to come back and establish himself again before the storyline kicks off.

"It's starting to happen with what we're filming now, and I think by this time next year, the character will be in a very different place. But that's as much as I can say!"

James Sutton as John Paul McQueen in Hollyoaks

© Lime Pictures

John Paul



Will the big storyline challenge you as an actor?
"Yeah, I think it will. I find a lot of things challenging - I'm not as assured as I might come across in interviews. I'm constantly thinking of ways to push myself and try to do the best that I can with my limited ability!"

How do you feel about Nicole Barber-Lane's decision to leave the role of Myra?
"I was surprised when I heard that Nicole would be leaving, as I'd only just come back and was looking forward to doing more stuff with her. I hope it wasn't personal! (Laughs.) I'd love to work with her again, as she's a fantastic actress."

How do you think Myra's exit will affect the McQueen family?
"It's definitely going to change the dynamic. I'd love to see Di Langton who plays Nana become a much bigger matriarchal figure in the McQueen house and be the one who rules the roost. Di is absolutely fabulous and we all adore her, so I'd love to work with her more."

> Read more 'Hollyoaks' spoilers and news

Hollyoaks airs weeknights at 6.30pm on Channel 4, with first look screenings at 7pm on E4.

Digital Spy Soap Scoop video - press play below to watch Amie Parker-Williams reveal gossip on a murder scheme in Emmerdale, huge trouble for Karl in Coronation Street, a feud escalating in EastEnders and a surprise arrival in Hollyoaks.

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