Coronation Street star Rachel Leskovac has given her first interview after tragic scenes tonight saw Natasha Blakeman die, revealing she couldn’t stop crying as she filmed her final scene with her screen son.
Natasha was shot in a case of mistaken identity by drug dealer Harvey Gaskell (Will Mellor), who thought he’d instead fired at Leanne, who was wearing the same costume as Natasha.
Natasha had looked like she’d make it through the ordeal. However, tonight she lost her battle, leaving Nick (Ben Price) and son Sam (Jude Riordan, who won an NTA award earlier this year) to fend without her.
Rachel says she felt hugely emotional filming those final scenes with her co-stars, Ben and Jude.
“I’d done a bit of filming with Ben Price before Jude came onto set and I was already feeling quite emotional but because it was my last scene filming with him from the moment I saw Jude I just started crying and I didn’t stop till they said cut.
“It was really emotional to the point I couldn’t look at him in between takes because I just found it too difficult, it was pretty much non-stop crying. I’m a very emotional person — or some might say a right softie! The bond I have with Jude is very strong and I hope that’s come across on screen.”
As to what happens next for Nick and Sam, Rachel believes Natasha died knowing that Nick could be a good dad.
“She doesn’t really say much to Nick but there’s a moment where she looks at him and she just says his name, hopefully in that moment what will come across is that feeling of knowing. The way she looks at him and his response is basically letting her know that he’s going to be alright.
“I think she does trust that he will be a good dad to Sam despite what they’ve been through. I don’t think she’s ever doubted his love for him but perhaps sometimes his priorities. But sometimes it takes something really big to happen for people to step up and she doesn’t doubt that he will.”
Looking back on her time on Coronation Street, Rachel says she’s loved working with the cast.
“I can’t pinpoint one specific storyline but what I’ve enjoyed the most this time is getting to work with Jude which has been a real pleasure, also getting to have some scenes with Sue Nichols and Helen Worth who I just look up to so much. The fact that I’ve got to work closely with those two has brought me a lot of pleasure.”
As to what’s next, she says: “Part of the joy of being an actor is the prospect of new work, new beginnings, having the opportunity to challenge yourself creatively over and over again, whether that’s on stage or screen we shall see but I’m very much looking forward to spending Christmas with my family.“
Coronation Street continues on ITV.
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David is the What To Watch Editor and has over 20 years of experience in television journalism. He is currently writing about the latest television and film news for What To Watch.
Before working for What To Watch, David spent many years on TV Times magazine, interviewing some of television's most famous stars including Hollywood actor Kiefer Sutherland, singer Lionel Richie and wildlife legend Sir David Attenborough.
David started out as a writer on TV Times before becoming the title's deputy features editor and then features editor. During his time on TV Times, David also helped run the annual TV Times Awards. David is a huge Death in Paradise fan, although he's still failed to solve a case before the show's detective! He also loves James Bond and controversially thinks that Timothy Dalton was an excellent 007.
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