Since making her Neighbours debut a little more than two years ago, Nicolette Stone (Charlotte Chimes) has undoubtedly come a long way.
The well-known character first appeared on our screens with a propensity for schemeing and deceit, and she had a bit of a history of causing havoc in her wake.
Despite her criminal behaviour, she never crossed a line beyond repair, and with to a masterfully paced redemption storyline and stunning performances from star Charlotte Chimes, Nicolette solidified her place as a Ramsay Street fan favourite.
However, Neighbours’ unfortunate demise is quickly approaching after Channel 5 made the contentious decision to remove it from their lineup in favour of “original UK drama,” which the network claims has a “great appeal” for viewers.
This Friday, July 29, the programme concludes in a beautiful manner with an hour-long episode that honours everything Neighbours is, was, and still could’ve been.
However, Metro.co.uk thought it only appropriate to check up with a few of the program’s stars before the big finale. One of those players is Charlotte, who talks about her memorable time on the show and shares what’s coming up for her.
How do you feel about everything today as Neighbours draws closer to its end after it was announced some months ago?
It arrives in swells. I’m terribly sad right now. I’m eager for the upcoming trip, but at the same time.
I feel so bad for the Australian entertainment business and for all the fans. A crucial training ground for the actors and crew is being lost. I go through phases of extreme sadness, saying things like, “I’m going to truly miss this,” and there will undoubtedly be a grieving process. But I’m also enthusiastic about the potential.
It’s one of those excellent soap operas that you would imagine would air nonstop.
I thought it would go on forever! “Oh, is it truly over?” I just ask.
In such a short period of time, Nicolette has developed into such a recognisable figure. How has it been playing her over the past few years?
I have adored it utterly. Being cast as Nicolette has been an amazing joy, and I feel so fortunate. It’s been incredibly challenging at times, but I genuinely felt like I tried to never hide her humanity or any of her ‘ugly’ characteristics. Exploring it has been incredibly enjoyable.
Do you believe the show’s finale will be a fitting celebration of the program’s history of success?
Absolutely, yes! I sobbed when we initially heard bits and pieces of it. I cried when I read it after that. It’s weighty because it marks the end of an era. It’s a true celebration, yet it ends on a sombre note.
Many personalities and faces will be returning; are you looking forward to seeing so many familiar faces? Are there any returning actors with whom you’d like to share a scene?
I’ve been hoping she will share a scene with a certain person, but I’m not allowed to disclose who! [laughs].
Do you have a favourite among the amazing narratives in which you have appeared throughout the years?
The baby swap plotline is distinctive. It was incredibly juicy, awful, and fantastic. It was like riding on a roller coaster. I feel, though, that during my two years at Neighbours – and I can’t believe it’s been two years – any of Nicolette’s “Cha Chas” represented two steps forward and one step back. Any time she feels like butting heads with Paul, Pierce, her mother, or the sons. When she’s not at her best, I’ve enjoyed playing all of that the most. That’s not difficult at all, if that makes sense.
In a recent scenario, Nicolette felt bad because she and Paul had discovered Glen’s enormous secret without her being aware of the Kiri link. In contrast to who she was when she first arrived, I thought the moment when she asked whether she was like Paul was incredibly powerful.
I wholeheartedly concur with you! She seems to have come a long way, in my opinion. She hasn’t changed who she is, but she has become softer.
Are you pleased with Nicolette’s progress?
Totally! She remains an explosive firecracker! She has obviously become more balanced, and it’s possible that this is due to the fact that she is now a mother, lives in a stable household, and gets along well with her own mother. She is becoming increasingly aware of her parenting style and her desire to mend fences with her own mother.
How was working with Annie Jones, and will you miss portraying this dynamic and working with her every day? The relationship between Jane and Nicolette is one of the greatest on the programme.
Aw! The mere concept of that makes me dizzy. I always cry when I give it too much thought. I enjoy seeing Annie’s lovely face every day when I get at work. She is the most amazing individual. It’s impossible to put into words how amazing it is to work with her.
We adore moments with Jane and Nicolette; it’s been fascinating to observe their connection develop over time.
I cherish them. Everyone seems to be content at work, but Annie and I have been coming back for about three years, and we have both just seemed so delighted to be there. That, in my opinion, adds a dimension to our relationship and our dynamic. How can we make this the greatest it can be, is how it feels. Even in large fights, we say, “Come on! Attack me!
The way that Nicolette, David, and Aaron have co-parented Isla is another aspect that we have admired. Are you happy that Nicolette’s narrative went in this direction?
I’ve really enjoyed it, especially this year. At first, the plot was difficult because the characters were continuously at odds; therefore, their current harmonious relationship is sort of what they all desired.
Isla’s actress Mary, who is a little older now and recognises us, extends her arms to reach out to us. Today on set, she came to me on foot. When she was three weeks old, I put her in a capsule and sent her to Paul! She began as Abi before switching to Isla — it happens!
It’s crazy to think that I’ve known her since she was three weeks old.
Will saying goodbye to Nicolette be difficult?
Because I used to think, “Maybe I’ll leave and move to London,” but Nicolette could always come back for a while, I don’t believe I’ve even begun to consider what it will be like now. But ceasing to be her will be quite strange. I kind of live with her now and have for the past two years. In a week, I will be as much her as I am me.
Because I sleep during the other hours, there are some weeks when I resemble her more than others. It will seem really strange to store those shoes at the back of the cabinet and not wear them again.
What is ahead for you? What do you have planned for after the show?
One of our incredible actresses and directors, Kate Kendall, is going to be directing a short film I wrote and will be producing and appearing in. When we’re done, we’ll be filming that in Melbourne, so that’s fantastic! Right now, I’m doing an audition. In August, I have a wedding in Italy, but after that, I’m coming to London.
I go between periods of excitement and sadness. Knowing that all will work out, I keep telling myself, “The larger the unknown, the greater the potential.” I’m not really sure what will happen next, but I hope it will be enjoyable!