Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
3

Soaps Interview

'Coronation Street' Craig Charles talks Lloyd family shock - interview

By
Lloyd Mullaney from Coronation Street

© ITV

Coronation Street kicks off Lloyd Mullaney's huge new storyline in the coming days, as a chance meeting with an old flame leads to him discovering that he is a father.

When Lloyd comes face-to-face with ex-lover Mandy (Pamela Nomvete) for the first time in years, it seems that she is slightly uneasy to see him again. However, when Lloyd later meets Mandy's daughter Jenna (Krissi Bohn), all becomes clear and his life changes forever as he realises that he fathered a child with Mandy all those years back...

Digital Spy recently caught up with Craig Charles, who plays Lloyd, to hear all the gossip on what's to come as Mandy and Jenna become regular fixtures on the cobbles.

Were you surprised when you found out that Corrie had decided to bring in Lloyd's secret family?
"I wasn't really, as it was something that we had in the pipeline ages ago. We were originally going to get the storyline all together for the 50th anniversary, but then we knew I had to go off to do the new series of Red Dwarf, so we put it on hold for a while. There's never been a black family on Coronation Street, so we thought we'd redress that and put one in place.

"So I knew it was coming, but it's great to have it happen, and the actual storyline itself is great. It's Lloyd bumping into an old girlfriend who later went off with his best mate - he never knew that she'd given birth to his child and it's now nearly 30 years later.

"That whole story actually happened to a friend of mine just recently - he found out that he had a 14-year-old daughter who he never knew. So it's not as far-fetched as you'd think and I've really enjoyed doing it."

What can you tell us about the two newcomers?
"I'm so glad that they've brought in Pamela and Krissi, as they're really lovely women and great to work with. I did the auditions with both of them, but the decisions are made on an executive level, so you then have to go away and see who the bigwigs liked.

"Mandy is a very warm character and she'll have a great place on the street. She's not just involved in my storyline, she's involved in other storylines too and she becomes quite integral to the street. It's the same with Jenna, but that's in ways that I can't really tell you about at the moment. The two new characters are going to affect everybody."

Convinced that Jenna is his daughter, Lloyd pays another visit to Mandy's and waits for her to arrive home

© ITV



Have you helped your new co-stars to settle in?
"I'm the ultimate help - I show them where the tea is, I show them where the milk is and they can get on with the rest! (Laughs.) No, obviously the show is a big machine and it can be quite daunting, especially for someone like Krissi who's quite a young actress. Krissi was actually about to give up the game and move away from acting, but all of a sudden she got a call, had this audition and landed this massive role. She's walking around pinching herself now and she can't believe how much things have changed.

"Pamela is an old hand as she's done soap operas before - she was in a South African soap opera for years. But Coronation Street is still a totally different kettle of fish to all of that, so hopefully I've helped them to settle in. It's not just me, though - all of the cast are very welcoming and everyone's really nice when someone new joins.

"I'd been on television for 30 years before I joined Coronation Street, and I was still really nervous before I walked into The Rovers. You're making iconic television here as it's the nation's biggest TV show. You do find that daunting, no matter who you are."

Does Lloyd still have strong feelings for Mandy so many years on?
"Yeah, he says that she was 'the one that got away'. Maybe the reason he's been drifting all of these years is because the love of his life escaped him. Through circumstances, he's been brought back together with Mandy, and I think he's going to grasp that and make up for lost time."

Will Lloyd be a good father to Jenna?
"Yeah, I think so! He's already like a father figure to loads of the street - he's one of those characters who everyone comes to with their problems. He should have his own column - Lloyd's Letters! It could be in Woman's Own!"

It sounds like it may be difficult for Jenna to accept Lloyd at first, though…
"Yeah, initially she's very wary of Lloyd. All of a sudden she realises that her father wasn't the man she knew - Johnny, who has since died. So a lot of Jenna's storyline is about overcoming that, and Lloyd going through a similar process because he never knew she existed.

"So at first we're in total shock, and Jenna doesn't really take the news very well. Lloyd really doesn't want to replace Johnny, because it's 28 years later and he's missed the bike rides, teaching her to swim and all of that. Basically, he just wants a relationship where he can get to know her, and see where things go from there."

Lloyd gets a shock when a young woman by the name of Jenna opens the door, claiming to be Mandy's daughter

© ITV



Is this one of your favourite storylines from your time at Corrie?
"All of the stories I do on Corrie are my favourites. This is a big one for Lloyd, it really is, but being an actor your main concern is wanting to have material that is a challenge. You just want to stretch yourself as an actor, and stories like this show what you can do.

"I'm chuffed to be doing the storyline. But each day's a different day - I don't have favourite scenes or storylines, it's just that every day I want to be challenged."

This is a serious storyline for Lloyd, but will we still see his comedy side?
"Oh, there's still loads of me and Steve McDonald in the cab office to come. There's lots of comedy on the way! And once this new story settles down, it's quite a fun family. There'll be quite a lot of funny stuff going on within Lloyd and his family."

Did you miss Corrie when you took your break for Red Dwarf?
"I couldn't wait to get back. It's like being in a family here, because all of the crew and the cast are really close. I was only supposed to be gone for three months, but it turned out to be six months so I was really eager to get back.

"Simon Gregson, who plays Steve McDonald, is one of my closest friends. He'd be round at my house at night and going into work the next day and I wouldn't be, which didn't feel right! I missed it a lot, because I really like being here."

When you joined Corrie, did you expect Lloyd to have this longevity?
"When I joined in 2005, I didn't think I'd be here now, no. But it's one of those jobs where, once you get your feet under the table and get to know everyone, it's very difficult to leave.

"I've had some great experiences as an actor, as a poet and a comedian, but none so much as here where I think, 'I really like doing this and I don't want to go - don't sack me!' You feel really at home, and to be honest it's not really work. Some people will tell you it is, but it's not."

The big news recently has been Sue Johnston's arrival. Are there any more Lloyd and Gloria scenes coming up?
"Yeah, I've filmed quite a bit with Sue, actually. Me and Sue go way back from her days in Brookside. Although I was never in Brookside, I knew her then.

"We go back a long way, and she's absolutely hilarious in Corrie. She's playing a really crazy part and I think people are going to love her. She's brilliant, and when you think about how Coronation Street is attracting actresses of her calibre, it's all looking good for the future, isn't it?"

> 'Coronation Street': Lloyd's secret family storyline confirmed
> Read more 'Coronation Street' spoilers and news

Coronation Street airs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays on ITV1. Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

You May Like

Comments

Loading...