Lisa Riley talks to TV Times magazine about getting back to acting in Scott and Bailey and why she doesn't mind foregoing make-up on TV... You play murder suspect Nadia Nicks in Scott and Bailey next week... "I am desperately proud of this performance. Nadia had to be intense, but I also had to get across that Lesley Sharp’s character, Janet, does feel incredibly sorry for her. This girl has been sucked into horrific circumstances because she’s searching for parental guidance that she’s never had." Nadia isn’t the most glamorous of characters to play! Did you mind being on TV without any make-up on? “God no, not one little bit! If you’re going to do a part like this then you must do it properly. I didn’t wash my hair for three weeks while I was filming because I wanted to do it correctly! There’s nothing I hate more than when I’m watching a good drama and then the next thing the character wakes up with a full face of make-up. We couldn’t have Nadia turning up with false eyelashes on!” What was it like coming back to acting in a drama series? “After doing 12 years non-stop telly I needed to go back and learn my craft in the theatre. I’ve never been out of work, but because you’re not on the box people think you’re not doing anything, which is hilarious because you work 50 times harder on stage! I’ve got my telly shoes on again now and I wanted to do something that would make an impact and prove to people that I’m not that cheesy presenter from You’ve Been Framed, I’m an actor.” Do soap fans still want you to return to Emmerdale? “People always ask if I’m going to play Mandy again and wherever I go they say, 'Emmerdale isn’t funny any more, it’s too serious, please go back.' It’s very flattering, but I don’t want to play the same role all my life, that’s why I left.” Are there any roles out there that you would love to have? “I’d love to do some period drama now, something like Cranford. I was born to play the big cook downstairs... and I don’t even mind having no teeth!”
Get the What to Watch Newsletter
The latest updates, reviews and unmissable series to watch and more!
Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix.
An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.