Colin Salmon has revealed the moving reason why he’s joining the cast of BBC’s EastEnders alongside Strictly Come Dancing finalist Molly Rainford.
James Bond film series star, 60, confirmed he took the role on the historic soap since he “can’t be far from home” because his wife is “not well”.
The Resident Evil actor will arrive at Albert Square as part of a new family, playing a father -of- two George Knight.
Who is Colin Salmon’s wife? Colin Salmon has revealed the moving reason that he is joining the cast of EastEnders. ( BBC) (Image: BBC/PA)
The British actor is married to artist and illustrator Fiona Hawthorne.
Speaking about why he took on the role to PA News Agency, Salmon said: “My wife’s not well, so I can’t be far from home…and the universe has brought (me) something quite extraordinary.
Hawthorne has previously revealed to Hello! magazine that she was diagnosed with a rare lung condition, interstitial lung disease, which means that she needs to use an oxygen tank.
Salmon added: “(Executive producer) Chris (Clenshaw) was passionate, he was clear, he was progressive, he had a vision, and a clear love for the show and the people who watch it, so I find that to be the requisite for any job.”
As someone from the East End of London, Salmon has explained that he understands the importance of the show.
He shared: “Growing up and everybody I know, who I’ve told I’m doing this, has got really, really excited and then some have said: ‘How could you do EastEnders?’ They don’t know me. It’s a no brainer, it’s worked and the universe has been really kind.”
The Doctor Who actor went on to say that the BBC’s veteran soap actor Steve McFadden – who fans know as the tough Phil Mitchell – has taken on the role as friend and mentor both on and off-screen.
When asked about what advice the actor gave him, Salmon said he told him: “Just get it done.”
He added: “Steve comes on set and Steve’s ready. Steve’s there and he’s quietly the boss… and we had our phone call, I think the opening line is ‘You’re mad’, closely followed by ‘Get a bike’. Because (in) that way you can get in and out quite easily. My wife just went: ‘Is he mad?’”
Salmon also said that he was a “family man” along with McFadden and the other men on the show so “the conversations are just so refreshing, because it’s not that nonsense”.
Colin Salmon is best known for his role as MI6 deputy chief of staff Charles Robinson in three Bond films. ( BBC/PA) (Image: BBC/PA)
Who is Colin Salmon playing on EastEnders? Colin Salmon is playing father-of-two George Knight and partner to Elaine Peacock (Harriet Thorpe), who is the mother of Linda Carter (Kellie Bright).
Executive producer Clenshaw has described George as a boxer with a lot of baggage who knows Phil.
Meanwhile, Linda has teamed up with her “larger-than-life” mother to run the Queen Victoria pub as Knight brings his two daughters Gina (Francesca Henry) and Anna (Molly Rainford) to Walford.
Speaking about how her character feels about the new arrivals, Kellie Bright said: “Linda is very scarred by Janine so for her, everyone is the enemy and no one is to be trusted.
“Especially not this man, who as far as she’s concerned her mum does not know nearly well enough so she’s starting from that place, so there’s no openness.”
The Knights will arrive in an EastEnders episode on BBC One on June 1.