Last week, we brought you the news that Remy Hii had joined the cast of Neighbours as Hudson Walsh, an elite swimmer who crosses paths with Josh Willis (Harley Bonner) and becomes a new love interest for Chris Pappas (James Mason).
The young actor's Ramsay Street role follows his lead part in Australian miniseries Better Man, which is due to air next month.
Keen to hear more about what we can expect from Hudson, Digital Spy caught up with Remy this week for his first interview about the role, which sees him reveal some early gossip on what's in store.
How are you finding your time at Neighbours so far?
"It's great and I'm loving it. It's a lot of fun, and honestly everyone here is just awesome to work with. It's a great family to be inducted into. And as a young actor just out of drama school, it's a fantastic place to really hone your skills. The opportunity to work with so many different directors is invaluable."
How did the role come about?
"I was unemployed at the time and although my home base is Sydney, I was actually in Melbourne by chance, so I was able to drop in to the Neighbours studio and do an audition rather than record myself in my lounge room. It was on a Friday and I was on my way out of Melbourne for a camping weekend, so I dropped by the studio, put down a tape and I found out on the Monday I had the role."
Were you nervous on your first day?
"I wasn't nervous, I was excited. I guess there is always nervous excitement when you're meeting new people and people who have been doing this for a long time. But truly, everyone has been so welcoming, so I was able to settle into the show pretty quickly."
How would you describe the character of Hudson?
"Hudson is a sensitive guy who is just starting to find himself. He has been incredibly focused all his life. He has had tunnel vision on this one goal, which is to be a champion swimmer, but since moving to Erinsborough he is starting to discover there is more out there for him."
We know that Hudson will get to know Josh at the local Olympic pool. Will they be friends or enemies?
"They are both elite sportspeople at the top of their game and they're after the same medal, so they are bound to clash at some stage. However, I guess the difference with them is they know what each other is going through, which helps them understand each other."
How does Hudson compare to Josh in terms of his skill in the pool?
"I think Hudson was probably born with a natural talent and his parents picked up on that very quickly, so while he was always very, very fast and quick in the pool, his natural talent has carried him across the line more, so he may not be as competitive as Josh for that reason. I think he has the confidence over Josh because he has this natural ability."
We know that Hudson will be a love interest for Chris, so can you tell us what fans can expect from their relationship?
"Obviously Chris has just come out of a relationship, and he enters into this relationship with Hudson not with hesitation but more caution. Chris is trying to keep his cards close to his chest, but by the same token, Hudson is also a new guy to this neighbourhood and isn't quite sure who he can be open to and show his true colours to. So I think what viewers can expect from this relationship is two people trying to find a way to open up to each other and show their real colours."
Did you know Hudson was gay when you took on the role?
"Yes and I thought he was a great character with an interesting story and lots of layers to his personality."
We know that you've been filming for a little while, so can you tell us a bit more about what fans can expect from Hudson's story arc?
"I think what fans can look forward to is that competition or rivalry between Hudson and Josh, how that will play out and what happens when the pressure builds so much to achieve. Will he break or will he succeed?"
Would you be interested in a more long-term stay with the show if it was offered?
"I'm thrilled with the way the role has unfolded into a recurring guest role and I've just heard I'm required back next month to film, which is great."
What have James Mason and Harley Bonner been like to work with?
"They have been absolute legends. They are two incredibly fun blokes, and they knew each other before Harley joined Neighbours so there is a great rapport between them."
Who will Hudson be sharing a lot of screen time with?
"Obviously it's his main rival Josh and his love interest with Chris, but there is also a lot with Kip Gamblin playing Brad Willis. And there is a story with Terese, Josh's mother, and down the track he comes in contact with a lot of the younger characters."
You've been acting for a few years. What can you tell us about your previous work?
"I started off in theatre on stage with the Queensland Theatre Company before picking up small guest roles in television, and it was about that time that I decided to make this my career and living, so I decided to study at NIDA (National Institute of Dramatic Art) in Sydney for three years. I graduated in 2011 and was extremely lucky to pick up the lead role in Better Man."
Sachin Joab, who played Ajay in Neighbours, was also in Better Man. Did you share any screen time with him in that?
"Yes, I did, virtually an entire episode. Sachin is one of the most incredibly talented and generous actors I've had the pleasure of working with."
> Read more 'Neighbours' spoilers and news
Neighbours airs weekdays at 1.45pm and 5.30pm on Channel 5 in the UK, and weekdays at 6.30pm on Eleven in Australia.
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