I'm A Celeb's Shane Richie reveals he was bankrupt and 'had nothing' before joining EastEnders

I’m A Celeb’s Shane Richie reveals he was bankrupt and ‘had nothing’ before joining the EastEnders cast… and that getting the job reduced him to tears

Shane Richie has recalled how getting a role on EastEnders pulled him out of bankruptcy.

Chatting to campmate Victoria Derbyshire on Sunday night’s I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here! he explained that he had not been originally asked to audition for his eventual role Alfie Moon, and that he was initially sent home without being cast.

‘I remember going in and Gary Beadle, Tish Dean and I think Dean Gaffney were all in the Queen Vic and I did a little [scene],’ he said. ‘By the time I’d got to the car my manager had called and said “they didn’t think you were right”.

On the brink: Shane Richie has recalled how getting a role on EastEnders pulled him out of bankruptcy

On the brink: Shane Richie has recalled how getting a role on EastEnders pulled him out of bankruptcy

‘Then my manager gets a call saying they’d like [me] to come back and do some improv, they have this idea of this family they’re working on.

‘So I’ve gone in and Tony Jordan who created the Slaters was a big fan of John Sullivan [writer of Only Fools And Horses] and he always wanted to create The Trotters but in EastEnders.

‘So I kept coming back but still no idea what was going on.’

Shane went on: ‘So we go on holiday. I’m bankrupt because of this film I’d invested in, I’ve got nothing, I’m selling the house, no work.

Turn of events: He explained that he had not been originally asked to audition for his eventual role Alfie Moon, and that he was initially sent home without being cast [pictured with on-screen wife Kat, played by Jessie Wallace]

Turn of events: He explained that he had not been originally asked to audition for his eventual role Alfie Moon, and that he was initially sent home without being cast [pictured with on-screen wife Kat, played by Jessie Wallace]

Backstory: Chatting to campmate Victoria Derbyshire on Sunday night's I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Backstory: Chatting to campmate Victoria Derbyshire on Sunday night’s I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!

‘The phone goes and it’s my manager and he goes EastEnders want you.

‘I started getting teary and he told me about this character called Alfie Moon and in my first episode I’d be coming in and taking over the Queen Vic, I started crying.’

He went on to explain another twist of fate that took place.

‘Jump back 25 years to the 80s and I’m doing warm up on The Late Late Breakfast Show. There’s a runner on the floor, running around making cups of tea and someone started to shout at her, she gets teary.

He recalled: 'I remember going in and Gary Beadle, Tish Dean and I think Dean Gaffney were all in the Queen Vic and I did a little [scene]. By the time I’d got to the car my manager had called and said "they didn’t think you were right"

He recalled: ‘I remember going in and Gary Beadle, Tish Dean and I think Dean Gaffney were all in the Queen Vic and I did a little [scene]. By the time I’d got to the car my manager had called and said “they didn’t think you were right”

A moon is born: Shane played Alfie on the BBC soap between 2002–2005, returning in 2010–2016, and then again between 2018–2019

A moon is born: Shane played Alfie on the BBC soap between 2002–2005, returning in 2010–2016, and then again between 2018–2019

‘I went over and had a go and sat down with her and said “let me make you a cup of tea”.

‘On my very first day on EastEnders, they said did I want to meet the director. I was so nervous, shaking, all the cast were there and I come around the corner and the director goes “here you go Shane, here’s a cup of tea”.’

Putting two and two together, Victoria gasped. ‘Oh my God, it’s her! That makes me want to cry, that’s a brilliant story!’ she said.

‘And from 2002 onwards, it just went mental, all about the timing, mad eh?’ Shane concluded. 

On learning he got the part, Shane recalled: 'I started getting teary and he told me about this character called Alfie Moon and in my first episode I’d be coming in and taking over the Queen Vic, I started crying'

On learning he got the part, Shane recalled: ‘I started getting teary and he told me about this character called Alfie Moon and in my first episode I’d be coming in and taking over the Queen Vic, I started crying’

Soap stories: Shane is also taking part on I'm A Celeb with Corrie legend Beverley Callard

Soap stories: Shane is also taking part on I’m A Celeb with Corrie legend Beverley Callard

Talking in the Telegraph, Victoria said: ‘Alfie Moon in EastEnders was absolutely iconic.

‘Alfie and [wife] Kat as a couple, the love story that played out for months and months was just superb!’

Shane played Alfie on the BBC soap between 2002–2005, returning in 2010–2016, and then again between 2018–2019. 

I’m A Celeb airs nightly on ITV at 9PM.

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This post first appeared on dailymail.co.uk

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