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Thursday 18th July 2019

Richard Linnell speaks out about leaving Hollyoaks

He's glad Alfie had a happy ending

Richard Linnell  left Hollyoaks in an emotional episode tonight.

The 21-year-old actor's character Alfie Nightingale departed the village to head to the US for an internship, and Richard admitted his three-year stint on the Channel 4 soap has been "far better" than he ever imagined.

Richard has played Alfie for three years Credit: (YouTube/Hollyoaks)

He said: "I'm just so thankful. It's been the best three years I could have asked for – far better than I had any right to expect when I joined the show. I met some amazing people there, who felt like a real-life family. I've also been given some incredible storylines to portray.

"There isn't a single bad cast member at Hollyoaks. Every single person in that building - from the cast to the crew – are people that I'll miss deeply. I'm very grateful for the experience that I had."

Richard is pleased Alfie had a "happy ending" on Hollyoaks, and he already has some ideas about a potential comeback storyline, which could see his alter-ego return from the States with a girlfriend who is related to someone in the village.

Richard is glad Alfie had a happy ending (Credit: YouTube/Hollyoaks)

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He added to Digital Spy: "America isn't that far away and we've seen characters come back before. Alfie could come back with a weird accent!

I'm just so thankful. It's been the best three years I could have asked for – far better than I had any right to expect when I joined the show.

"It could also be a great vehicle to bring in a new character. Maybe they could bring in Alfie's new girlfriend and she'd turn out to be related to someone in the village. It's not in my hands, though!"

Last year, Richard admitted it was "really exhausting" acting out Alfie's schizoaffective disorder for "hours on end".

Alfie has schizoaffective disorder (Credit: YouTube/Hollyoaks)

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He said: "It was probably the most physical thing I've done on the show.

"The anxiety and paranoia which comes with schizoaffective disorder, tightness of breath, hunching of shoulders, changes in speech pattern and breathing, tensing up your body - doing that for hours on end was really exhausting.

"As an actor I have to physicalise the thought processes described in the script, which is the key to selling it as truthful to the audience. You almost have to make your body reverse-engineer those feelings - so if you make yourself cry you'll feel sad, and if you tense up your body you'll feel tense and anxious which helps the performance."

Fans were sad to see Richard leave the show.

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