Thursday, June 8, 2023

A Complete overview of all the actors who played in Home and Away including some cameos

Since Home and Away debuted on our tiny screens in 1988, Australia’s bicentennial year, there hasn’t been a dull day in Summer Bay.

And, oh, the strewth! During those 33 years, there have been some significant events. The activity hasn’t stopped since the Fletcher family – Tom (Roger Oakley) and wife Pippa (Vanessa Downing) – left the big city to settle in Summer Bay with their five foster children.

Bobby’s (Nicolle Dickson) death in a boating accident, the major flood of 1996 when a major storm devastated Summer Bay, and Ailsa’s (Judy Nunn) fatal heart attack in 2000 are all depicted in this film. There were also fires, jail terms, a deadly siege, and, gasp, the scene in which Summer Bay favourite Sally (Kate Ritchie) was stabbed and survived.

The storey twists and turns have kept Australian audiences enthralled for more than three decades, and the show has a cult following in other countries. People are so interested in learning more about the show and its characters that Flamin’ Galah Sydney Tours will take 5000 people on a Home and Away Palm Beach site tour each year.

And, flamin’ nora, when it comes to long-term cast members, Ray Meagher, who plays Alf Stewart, has been with the show since the beginning. He first appeared on the show in 1988 for the premiere episode and has remained on the show ever since. “Stone the flamin’ crows,” “strewth,” and “ye flamin’ galah” are some of his most memorable expressions. In 2010, Meagher received a Gold Logie for his contribution.

Sally (Kate Ritchie) started working on the show when she was eight years old, and throughout her 20-year run, she earned two Gold Logies. She left in 2008.

Home and Away has aired almost 5000 episodes and won more Logies than any other Australian programme.

Summer Bay is a hotbed of talent, with a plethora of performers going on to star in Hollywood films after walking the holy grounds. We dug through the archives of episodes to find some of the stars (see box) who have gone on to great success after their time at “the Bay.”

We spoke to two actresses this week who are loving the experience of being on the hit programme, or Homie, as actress Emily Weir refers to it. The performer adds that she and her family were huge fans of the show, so landing a role on it was a dream come true.

“Not only my personal family, but my extended family, my aunties, my cousins, we call it Homie,” she explained. “It’s unbelievable that I’m here; life can be incredibly gracious at times, and it’s been a dream come true.”

“My agent contacted me while I was in the waiting room for an audition for another show.” ‘I know I shouldn’t phone you before another audition, but I just wanted to let you know you won the position on Home and Away,’ she said. I screamed and sobbed; it was the most unique feeling I’d ever had, and it was such a happy, happy time. It’s as if the entire world vanished for a little while.”

She’s been portraying Mackenzie Booth since December 2018, and she confesses she was a little frightened at first. “Knowing that I’d be running across Georgie Parker, Emily Symons, and Ray Meagher in the halls, individuals who I idolised growing up, is utterly terrifying,” she said.

“You understand why individuals go on to do big fantastic things because this job teaches you because you work here and live in this community that is Home and Away.” Because it is so fast-paced, it necessitates a strong work ethic, the ability to plan ahead of time, and the ability to be kind, kind, and transparent.

“Individuals like Chris Hemsworth, Isla Fisher, Melissa George, Isabel Lucas, and all these people who go on to do amazing things are fantastic to work with, and Home and Away teaches you that.”

Emily may live in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, but she prefers to work on the northern beaches and enjoys taking in the scenery in between takes. The majority of the outside scenes was shot in Palm Beach, however her character’s first home was in Avalon.

“When I’m at Palm Beach and have a few moments off,” she explained, “I do a long run from Palm Beach to Whale Beach and back.” “Whale Beach has become my small oasis of quiet, and I meditate there before running back.”

Emily enjoys exercise and meditation when she is not on set, and you can often find her in a hot yoga class or trekking. She’s just started cooking more, and her signature dish is a chicken, mushroom, and leek risotto.

My entire family, not just my personal family but also my extended family, aunties, cousins, and we call it Homie, are huge Home and Away fans.

Emily Weir is an actress who has appeared in a number of films.
While she enjoys acting, she plans to build her own production company and commission screenplays in the future.

“Margot Robbie has the kind of career that every actor dreams of,” she added. “She got her start on Neighbours, then kept acting, kept acting, got her break in America, and then she took it all and invested in her own production business, which she manages with all of her friends, and now she both makes and stars in films. That would be great, in my opinion.”

Mackenzie has dated Ari Parata on screen (Rob Kipa-Williams). But he almost didn’t make it: the Maori, Irish, and Scottish actor from New Zealand told the Northern Beaches Review that he’d given up acting not long before his agency informed him that he’d landed a job in Home and Away. “It was the ups and downs of life; sometimes you have a role, sometimes you don’t,” he explained. “A producer may promise you a role, but it may not materialise. In your life, you’re always on the lookout for something unexpected to happen.”

He travelled across the ditch to start on Home and Away in late 2019, after prior roles on 800 Words, Pearl In Paradise, The Meg, and West of Eden, and the enormity of being in such a well-known show wasn’t lost on him. “Man, I wonder if Chris [Hemsworth] stood here,” he mused as he walked along the beach. “I can clearly see the prospects on the other side as well; there’s a real chance you might be in a comparable situation, which is quite fantastic.”

Rob considers himself to have come a long way since his first paid acting role in a National Bank commercial in New Zealand, where he was “so green and frightened” that his face was hardly visible in the final result. “I was literally in the ad for a quarter of a second, I was that horrible,” he added, adding that “everyone starts somewhere.”

Rob would like to continue acting in television and films in the future. “I believe that television has evolved through time; in the past, a film actor would not really undertake TV roles, but now there is a crossover with streaming where huge names go on television series and then return to movies. Between the two mediums, there is a degree of mobility.”

Off-screen, he’s collaborating with Opetaia Foa’i, an award-winning musician and producer, on a meditation series that will be included in the Feel app. Opetaia, who composed the majority of the music for the Disney film Moana, is currently working on the series’ music.

“I believe it will be the first of its type Polynesian meditation series; you’ll hear sounds from all throughout Polynesia,” Rob explained. “I’m making tracks from other islands, such as Samoa, Tonga, and the Cook Islands, as well as Maori.”

He hasn’t visited his Kiwi family in a long time because of COVID, but he is planning a trip back in July. “I miss everything about it,” he added. “It’s difficult to convey the connection you have with your birthplace – family, friends.”

Until then, he’s loving working on the northern beaches, where he enjoys strolling, swimming, and trekking, including a recent trek up Barrenjoey Lighthouse.

“You see it from afar as a landmark, but it’s incredible once you walk up those trails and reach the summit,” he added. “The rockpool [at Palm Beach] is another of my favourite places.”

Summer Bay has come a long way since its humble origins.

It’s the soap that gave birth to Hollywood’s hottest stars and paved the way for some of the most well-known actors on both the small and big screens.

Chris Hemsworth, Isla Fisher, Naomi Watts, Julian McMahon, and the late great Heath Ledger, to name a few, have all stayed at the RV park or eaten at the Summer Bay Diner.

Chris Hemsworth starred as handsome Kim Hyde on the sitcom from 2004 until 2007, before going on to star in Thor, The Avengers, Extradition, and Men in Black: International.

Naomi Watts (born Julie Gibson in 1991) is most known for as Sam Bloom, a Newport lady, in the popular film Penguin Bloom. King Kong, The Impossible, Allegiant, and a slew of other films before it.

Heath Ledger (born Scott Irwin in 1997) went on to feature in a number of films, including The Dark Knight, Brokeback Mountain, and 10 Things I Hate About You, before dying in 2008 at the age of 28.

Isla Fisher played Shannon Reed on the show for three years, from 1994 to 1997, and has since appeared in films such as The Great Gatsby, Blithe Spirit, and Wedding Crashers, among others.

From 1990 until 1991, Julian McMahon, the son of former Australian Prime Minister Sir William McMahon, played Ben Lucini on the show. He went on to model and act, appearing in films such as Fantastic Four and Premonition.

Dannii Minogue (1989-1990) rose to prominence as an actor, singer, fashion designer, and television personality since then.

Guy Pearce, who first appeared on the show in 1991 after a spell on Neighbours from 1986 to 1989, is now an actor, film director, musician, and composer.

Other people who contributed to it

Then: Melissa George was ‘Angel Parrish’ 1993-1996. Now: Alias, Grey’s Anatomy, The Good Wife and Bad Mothers.

Then: Luke Bracey was ‘Trey Palmer’ 2009-2010. Now: Leading roles in The Best of Me, Point Break, Hacksaw Ridge, Lucky Day and Holidate.

Then: Ryan Kwanten was ‘Vinnie Patterson’ 1997-2002. Now: True Blood, The Hurricane Heist and voiced Blinky Bill.

Then: Luke Mitchell was ‘Romeo Smith’ 2009-2013. Now: The Tomorrow People, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Blindspot, The Code and Without Remorse.

Then: Kassandra Clementi was ‘Maddy Osborne’ 2013-2016. Now: Becoming Bond, Big Muddy and UnReal.

Then: Nicole De Silva was ‘Jane Sims’ 2006. Now: Rush, Doctor Doctor and Wentworth.

Then: Isabel Lucas was ‘Tasha Andrews’ 2003-2006. Now: Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Red Dawn and MacGyver.

Then: Tammin Sursok was ‘Dani Sutherland’ 2000-2004. Now: The Young and the Restless and Pretty Little Liars.

Then: Samara Weaving was ‘Indi Walker’ 2009 – 2013. Now: Ready or Not, SMILF, Netflix series Hollywood.

Then: Rebecca Breeds was ‘Ruby Buckton’ 2008 – 2012. Now: Stan hit Clarice.

Then: Luke Mitchell was ‘Romeo Smith’ 2009 – 2013. Now: Without Remorse.

Home and Away at a glance
Ed Sheeran made a cameo appearance in 2015
Angel Parrish departed Summer Bay in the show’s milestone 2000th episode
At least one character has died every year on Home and Away except for 1994
The show has filmed in the UK three times
Over the course of the show, there have been 25 births, 39 marriages and 110 deaths
The show created its first spin-off in 2015 called Home and Away: An Eye For An Eye

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