The early days may seem like lifetimes apart from those of Channel Seven’s Home, Away and Channel Nine’s Underbelly.
But look a bit more closely and, well, the Aussie drama juggernauts have certain uncanny parallels.
All are popular TV franchises for their freedom, death and weapons are shocking on both shows and, particularly, more familiar faces on both shows. There is a lot of familiar faces.
It is well known that the Australian acting industry is strict, and many actors – particularly those with decades of career – will eventually cooperate or show in the same shows, even though their stint cannot be overlooked.
This is precisely the case when it comes to Home and Away and Underbelly, thus, not an enormous shock. But how many stars have perfectly mastered their craft at these two famous shows is shocking.
Take a look at the largest overview of the stars who have been at Home, Out and Underbelly.
Gyton Grantley played Carl Williams, a driver-turned-drug-kingpin, in the original Underbelly in 2008. It was probably his most successful on-screen appearance. In the spin-offs Fat Tony & Co and Informer 3838, he reprised the part. Gyton had a fleeting appearance on Home and Away a year previous to his breakthrough role, in which he was involved in a love triangle with none other than Chris Hemsworth! Kit (Amy Mizzi), who was pregnant with Kim’s (Chris Hemsworth) child, had a romance with Gyton’s character James. It’s a mess!
Who doesn’t like a blue-haired boy? Rodger Corser was the man behind the fictitious policeman Steve Owen in season one of Underbelly, who was determined to put Melbourne’s most infamous criminal characters to justice. Rodger, on the other hand, played a character in Summer Bay in 2006 who was attempting to mow Chris Hemsworth’s lawn! Hugh Sullivan’s character made a play for Rachel Armstrong (Amy Matthews), who was dating Kim at the time.
Daniel Almalm played Jack Wilson, a depressed foster boy who appeared often in the early years of Home and Away, in the 1990s. One of his most memorable plots featured him as one of Sally Fletcher’s (Kate Ritchie) first boyfriends during a brief affair. Daniel reappeared on Underbelly’s first season, playing underworld figure and drug lord Dino Dibra, more than a decade later.
Kestie Morassi first appeared on Home and Away in 2017 as Maggie, the matriarch of the Astoni household. She was married to Ben (Rohan Nichol) until the couple moved to Italy three years later. Her on-screen partnership on Underbelly was a lot more complicated. She played prosecutor Zarah Garde Wilson, who became too entangled in the criminal underworld when she started a relationship with crime figure Lewis Caine (Marcus Graham), who was ultimately murdered.
Marcus Graham, meanwhile, was another star who dabbled in both Home and Away and Underbelly. Though his time as Lewis Caine ended in horror when his character was assassinated, his life in Summer Bay was a little less dramatic. Marcus’ character Harvey Ryan had a romantic friendship with Roo Stewart (Georgie Parker) and even married her before leaving the Bay in 2014 after two and a half years.
Les Hill was one of Summer Bay’s first heartthrobs, playing Blake Dean on Home and Away from 1990 to 1993. It was a stark contrast to his appearance as violent criminal Jason Moran on Underbelly in 2008, in which he was gunned down.
Though Callan Mulvey is best known for his iconic role as Drazic in Heartbreak High than his Home and Away guest appearance, the actor did visit Summer Bay’s sandy shores. From 2006 to 2008, he played gang member Johnny Cooper in different roles, and he had a particular disdain for Sally (Kate Ritchie). On Underbelly, he played Mark Moran, a legendary Melbourne underworld figure and Jason Moran’s brother.
Robert Mammone played Dr. Sid Walker, the father of Indi (Samara Weaving), Dex (Tom Green/ Charles Cottier), and Sasha (Samara Weaving) on Home and Away from 2009 to 2013. (Demi Harman). On Underbelly, he played underworld figure Tony Mokbel, one of the few remaining central figures from the gangland wars, and his career direction was very different.
ELLA SCOTT LYNCH
Ella Scott Lynch’s tenure on Home and Away was marred by controversy, when she took over as Hayley from Bec Hewitt when the latter left the show after seven years. Ella, on the other hand, made a name for herself in the Underbelly franchise by portraying a variety of roles. Camille Alavoine in Underbelly: Badness, Margaret in Underbelly: Chopper, and Nicola Gobbo in the spin-off Informer 3838 were among them.
KATE RITCHIE & MARTIN DINGLE WALL
Thanks to her 20-year career as Sally Fletcher, who grew up in front of the nation’s eyes, Kate Ritchie was one of Home and Away’s most popular ever actresses. And, although she had several romances during her time in Summer Bay, her marriage to Flynn was one of the most notable (originally played by Martin Dingle Wall). The couple reunited as a more twisted husband-and-wife pairing in 2009’s Underbelly: A Tale of Two Cities, playing Judi and Les Kane in the 13-part series set in the 1970s and 1980s.
Despite the actors despising each other in real life, Dieter Brummer’s Shane and Melissa George’s Angel are sure to be on every list of Summer Bay’s most legendary couples. Dieter nearly faded from the headlines during his tenure as a Home and Away heartthrob in the 1990s – before his victorious comeback as crooked cop Trevor Haken in Underbelly seasons two and three.
Summer Bay star to Underbelly cop seems to be a well-worn course for many Australian actors! Jessica Tovey, who played Belle Taylor from 2006 until her death in 2009, is another actress who has staked a claim on this path. In the 2010 film Underbelly: The Golden Mile, she played Wendy Jones, a police officer who became involved in a romantic relationship with John Ibrahim (Firass Dirani).
Mark Furze portrayed the bad boyfriend of sex worker-turned-policewoman Kim Hollingsworth in Underbelly: The Golden Mile, with his most memorable scene featuring his character tossing her beloved cat out the window. Fortunately, on Home and Away, the star played Ric Dalby, a much more likeable character who, from 2004 to 2008, captured the hearts of Australian teens with his brooding bad boy persona.
Jake Ryan, who played iconic character Robbo from 2017 to 2020 on Home and Away, was immediately recognisable by audiences, leaving viewers in tears as he was fatally killed in a dramatic car chase. But what Robbo viewers do not know is that the star who played the bad boy was once on the other side of the law in 2011’s Underbelly: Razor, when he played an officer.
Conrad Coleby, who played a constable in Sydney’s first drug unit, fought alongside Jake’s character on the right side of the law in the Roaring Twenties. Roman Harris, an ex-SAS soldier and father to Nicole Franklin, was a far cry from the part he played on Home and Away from 2007 to 2009. (Tessa James).
In scenes from Home and Away, Rick Donald’s character Keiran is causing a ruckus in Summer Bay and has been involved in brawls with stalwarts Roo (Georgie Parker) and Alf (Georgie Parker) (Ray Meagher). As his character Barney Dalton was blasted to smithereens by a gunman outside a pub in Underbelly: Razor, however, the shoe was well and truly on the other foot.
JEREMY LINDSAY TAYLOR
Detective Dylan Carter on Home and Away was a recurring role played by Jeremy Lindsay Taylor from 2016 to 2019. He was tough as nails and as shady as they come. But before he became a crooked officer, JLT played infamous gangster Norman Bruhn in Underbelly: Razor, where he died a violent death.
From teen heartthrob to toyboy with a disfigured skull! From 2007 to 2010, Lincoln Lewis was best known for his role as Geoff Campbell on Home and Away. After saying his goodbyes to Summer Bay, Lincoln starred in Underbelly: Razor as Sly Grog queen Kate Leigh’s much younger love interest (Danielle Cormack). In a vicious street brawl that left his face cut beyond recognition, he faced his match.
Jodi Gordon, who played Martha MacKenzie on Home and Away from 2005 to 2010, was one of the show’s most famous actresses. Jodi reprised her role as Kylie Keogh, a senior member of the NSW police force media, on Underbelly: Badness in 2012.
Todd Lasance will still be remembered by Home and Away fans for his breakthrough role as the adored Aden Jefferies, who he played from 2005 to 2010. However, after his days in Summer Bay, the star has enjoyed a successful career that includes not one, but two appearances in the Underbelly franchise. Todd played Sgt Dean Thomas in the 2011 film Underbelly Files: Remind Them Lucifer Was Here. Then, in 2018, he appeared in Underbelly Files: Chopper as bikie Syd Collins.
When Zoe Ventoura landed the part of Dr. Alex Neilson on Home and Away for a brief but sweet stint from 2019 to 2020, she gained a whole new set of fans. And when she played Chopper’s first wife Mary Ann in the 2018 miniseries Underbelly Files: Chopper, all eyes were on her once more.
When you’re a policeman, you’re still a cop! From 2005 to 2009, viewers were enamoured of Paul O’Brien’s portrayal of good-looking police officer Jack Holden on Home and Away. Paul reprised his appearance as murdered cop Rodney Miller in Underbelly Files: Tell Them Lucifer Was Here, two years after leaving the iconic soap.
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