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Soaps Interview

Graeme Hawley (John Stape, Corrie)

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Graeme Hawley (John Stape, Corrie)
Coronation Street love rat John Stape returned to Weatherfield last week in seach of forgiveness from his ex-girlfriend Fiz Brown (Jennie McAlpine). With his former lover not wanting to hear his excuses and Rosie Webster (Helen Flanagan) still on the scene, he has his work cut out to regain his true love's trust. We caught up with Graeme Hawley to chat about Stapey's return, his popularity with women and the girl of his dreams, Fiz Brown.

Did you always know John would be making a comeback to Corrie?
"I was always aware that there was a possibility that he'd come back. With anything in the acting profession, you don't count any chickens until the contract's been signed and until you're in costume and make-up! There was never any hesitation to want to come back."

How did you feel when you were invited back?
"I'm really excited, for several reasons. It's a brilliant place to work and I really enjoyed myself last time. I get on really well with the people I work with. It's also a great opportunity to come back to, and from what I've heard, it's going to be a great summer with the storyline they've got planned."

Where's John been?
"He ended up having to leave his teaching job and got a job at another school, during which life became difficult for him there too, so he left the teaching profession and became a cab driver. He lost the cab driver job too, so now he's back in Weatherfield in another cabbie job."

Was it love or lust as far as Rosie was concerned?
"Very much lust. I don't think there was love on either part to be honest. "

I'm presuming there's still unfinished business between John and Kevin?
"There's definitely unfinished business there. John stays very clear of Kevin, who doesn't want him around at all."

Do you think Fiz still has feelings for John?
"As much as she'd not like to admit it, she definitely still holds a candle for him. Deep down, there's a real connection between them which is undeniable. That's why he's back too, for her, because he can't live without her."

Does he truly have feelings for her? Or do you think his intentions toward her are more to do with forgiveness?
"I think initially it's all about forgiveness. Really the situation is that he's tried to spend the last six months of his life living without her but has come to the conclusion that he can't and she's the woman he loves. He's decided that he has to find a way for them to be together."

Is Sally still infatuated with him when he returns?
"No, I think where Sally's concerned, that ship has well and truly sailed. She's very much with Kevin and I think she'd rather Kevin stayed away from John, too. He's caused a hell of a lot of trouble for them."

Were you heckled a lot in real life after your first stint in Corrie?
"There's been a lot of friendly banter really. It happens a lot in the street wherever I go. It's all good-natured, though. People are very complimentary about the storyline and character and asking when John was returning, so that's been lovely. It was nice to hear that people wanted to see more of John Stape back on the Cobbles."

Why is he so popular with the women?
"He's a bit of a charmer and finds it easy to relax with them and be in their company. He has this disarming charm about him. He's a good listener and talks a lot. That's what they like about him, and he has this 'everyman' quality about him."

He's back for quite a substantial chunk of storyline isn't he?
"The main thing for this story is that he's back for Fiz. He wants to win Fiz back and he'll do everything in his power to make that happen. He absolutely loves her and wants to be with her. It's going to be a long old summer for him because he's got a lot of making up to do." Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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