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Sachs: 'Corrie idea goes back five years'

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Sachs: 'Corrie idea goes back five years'
Veteran actor Andrew Sachs has revealed that he and his wife concocted the idea for his Coronation Street character around five years ago.

In January, the 79-year-old, who played iconic hotel porter Manuel in BBC comedy Fawlty Towers, was cast in the role of Norris Cole's (Malcolm Hebden) estranged brother Ramsay Clegg.

Speaking of the character's origins, he said: "It actually goes back about five years. Myself and my wife had dreamt up a storyline where I played Norris's brother. We thought it would be great fun if a brother every bit as annoying as Norris turned up and the pair of them wound everyone up.

"I was [subsequently] at a charity function and we mentioned the it to a member of the Coronation Street team who was also there. I didn't hear anything and then a couple of years ago, I was asked if I was interested in the storyline where Norris met up with all his ex-wife Angela's ex-husbands, but I didn't fancy it at the time."

He added: "I'm glad I didn't as last July I was called by the producer who asked me if I would be interested in playing Norris's brother!"

Contrary to some reports, Sachs entered into talks with Coronation Street several months before the highly controversial Manuelgate saga. "I think a lot of people thought it was as a result of that, but I had already committed to Coronation Street before that happened," he said.

"I suppose it is quite good for ITV that my profile suddenly went through the roof," he joked. "Prior to that happening everyone knew who Manuel was but Andrew Sachs was pretty anonymous. Not anymore!"

He added: "I don't hold grudges - [Russell Brand and Jonathan Ross] shouldn't have done what they did and it did affect my family but we've all moved on now."

His 17-episode stint as Ramsay Clegg begins on Friday, May 15 at 7.30pm on ITV1. Get the Inside Soap magazine on your iPhone or iPad

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