Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
12

Soaps Soap Scoop

Loads of 'Hollyoaks' gossip from Paul Marquess

By
Hollyoaks series producer Paul Marquess

© Lime Pictures

It's no secret that Hollyoaks hasn't been on top form of late - but I have a feeling that's all about to change under the show's new leading man Paul Marquess.

Not since chatting to Emmerdale boss Gavin Blyth for the first time last year have I been instilled with a fresh confidence in a soap.

Paul's a storyteller on a mission - to steer Hollyoaks back to success.

I recently caught up with Paul to learn more about his plans for the soap and its E4 spinoff Later, so click here to read the main part of the interview.

If you've landed here from Part 1, then read on for more about what's to come storyline-wise.

What was your reasoning behind Alex Carter's return as Lee Hunter?
"He turns up with another character. He's been working as a Gareth Gates impersonator on a cruise ship and he won't just have light stories because Alex is great. He's one of our new students. The thing about our new students is the audience will recognise some of them. I can't remember how many there are but we're doing a proper Freshers' Week. Some of them will be eerily familiar but I'll [leave you thinking about] that."

Were you ever worried about establishing a new group of students?
"Well we've done Freshers' Week. They more of less get a week to themselves - it's good, it's funny and things happen in it. One of them doesn't make the grade in that week and one of them isn't who he says he is… They come in with a bang."

Are you planning to bring back any more former cast members?
"Not currently."

Who's on your wish list?
"They're all dead!"

The Costellos
"They're only one of three families. They're family number two. The thing about the Costellos is that The Dog has to be somewhere the audience wants to be. It's like when I did Brookside, the first thing I did was put Bev in the bar so you wanted to be in there. I loved the Ashworths and I'm a huge fan of Suzanne Hall but they've had such grim storylines recently that every time you went to The Dog, there was grim stuff happening. I'm not saying the Costellos won't have serious stories but I think you'll want to be there. They're good-looking kids and the parents are good-looking and there's potential for energy and fun."

Are the Costellos the ones hiding something from their kids?
"Oh, everybody's hiding something from their kids in this show! There's loads of secrets. Secrets work."

The Sharpes
"Phina, who's playing Gabby Sharpe, is fantastic. I'm just about to do her first rough cut and she's brilliant."

Brendan - is he a bad boy?
"Oh, definitely - he's an absolute b**tard! I think people are going to think, 'Here's the next Warren', but they'll be surprised when they find out what the real story is. He is Cheryl's half-brother… and Cheryl won't hear a bad word against him..."

Mitzeee
"She's gorgeous, yes. She's Heidi Costello's cousin. She's a wannabe, aspiring, kind-of-getting-there glamour model who does a PR thing at the nightclub. She becomes one of the Costellos but she's a constant irritant. She's a woman on a mission - that's all I'm saying. We will meet Mitzee's mother and when we do, it'll explain why Mitzeee has it in for the Costellos."

What do you have planned for Steph Dean Cunningham?
"The Steph story was talked about before I was here. I could have changed it but I thought it was interesting to do a serious story for her. I'm not saying she's a comedy character but she's a great comedy actress so it's about somebody we know and love going through a really hard time. By the time you get to next year with that story, you'll see what I mean by a 'Hollyoaks story'. Once that plays out you'll say, 'They could only have told it like that in Hollyoaks'."

Is Jem sticking around? She's been credited as 'Jem Costello' and with a new family under the same name, will they be related or will she have a name change like Zak/Steph had in the past?
"Well I'd have thought the fact that she was called Costello was a big clue! (Laughs)"

Apparently she's getting a new family?
"No, no - the third family is completely new. It's a mum and dad with two kids. Something shocking happens to them really early on. It's one of the kids having a really, really big secret that we see - we're in on that from the beginning. You see what this kid gets up to and you think, 'Oh no, this is going to end in disaster'. And guess what? It does..."

Has Hayley Ramsey left for good? Her pregnancy was never really resolved and she's barely been mentioned since.
"We're talking about bringing her back but what I've said to her is that we'll only bring her back if we've got a good enough story for her. Clearly, as far as the audience are concerned, it was really quite unsatisfactory the way she left because the actress wasn't well but she's had her baby now and she's absolutely fine. There's no point just bringing her back for the sake of it but we've got a long term next week, so we'll talk about it then."

Will we ever meet Jacqui and Mercedes's father?
"I saw Claire Cooper today - the main thing is that there's so much talent within that family that there's a danger that they are 'The McQueens'. Jacqui will move out and have a completely fresh set of stories. She'll try and cope with life without that support system. The father's not something we've talked about yet. I wouldn't rule it out, but is it too obvious? It would need a really big twist that I haven't thought of yet…"

Eva
"The Sheree Murphy stuff is really good - that becomes Ab Fab. Boy does Anita wish she'd never tracked her down! Eva, her character, is a character with no boundaries and she does things that just make Anita want to die!"

And also on the cards…
§ "Next January, there's the most brilliant murder. It's just brilliant - it's so clever. It's not my idea, it was one of the writer's, but I just thought it was brilliant."
§ "Mitzeee has a piece of news that Heidi doesn't want to hear. Mitzeee waits 'til the big fashion show and just announces it after having paraded down the catwalk in her pants! I think that's going to be a really big and funny week."
§ "We've got a terrific story for Ste. I think Kieron's a fantastic actor and when I told him about it he just loved it."
§ "There will be a big stunt in November but we haven't decided who goes in it. That'll lead to a whodunit as well - a very different sort of whodunit..."

Additional reporting by Philippa Warr.

Are you excited about what Paul has planned for Hollyoaks? Let me know your views using the usual form below! Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

You May Like

Comments

Loading...