Acting royalty Timothy West has joined the cast of EastEnders in the role of rambunctious Stan, who is Shirley Carter’s (Linda Henry) estranged father…
We’ll meet him next week when Shirley and her brother Mick (Danny Dyer) are forced to go to Stan, cap in hand, for a loan to carry out the repairs that are so badly needed in The Vic.
But will Stan want to help his children? We’ll find out soon, but here’s what Timothy had to say to the BBC in an interview about his role…
What kind of a man is Stan?
I think he’s quite tough. He lives on his own, he doesn’t go out much, hasn’t got many friends, and I think he is a bit lonely.
He’d probably argue that he’s perfectly happy being self-sufficient, but I think he’s a bit lonely and is a bit concerned that as he gets older, he doesn’t have many people around him.
How do you think he’ll feel when he finds out that his children are all living together at The Vic? Do you think he’s happy or bit jealous about it?
I think both actually. He likes the idea of the family being together, and is glad they are, but he doesn’t want to be left out and frankly wants to be in control. That’s his game.
What’s his relationship with his children like?
He had a very stormy relationship with their mother. He’s kept in touch with Tina, so they have the best relationship out of the lot of them. Mick and Stan give each other a wide berth, although Stan’s delighted to see him.
There’s a lot of tension between him and Shirley though and he’s very wary of her. We’ll have to see what happens there…
Why do you think he gives Shirley money for the pub?
He’s got the money to spare, and I think he wants to see them all together in the pub. If they’re in the pub, he can drop in and use it as a way to get himself back in to their lives. Also, giving someone money gives you a certain hold over them, a control, which is what Stan wants.
What attracted you to the role of Stan and to joining EastEnders?
It’s nice to be asked, and I liked what I saw in the script and the foundation of Stan as a character.
It’s a lovely crew and production department, and they’re very nice people, so I think I’ll have a wonderful time. I know how popular the show is.
What was it like filming you first scene?
I had to film two quite heavy scenes on the first day which was very intense, and also I had an awful cold (laughs) but it was fine!
Have you met any of the rest of the cast before?
I haven’t met any of the actors playing Stan’s kids before, but I have met Rudolph Walker, Annette Badland, Ann Mitchell and June Brown.
How does playing Stan in EastEnders compare to other roles you’ve had?
I try to make everything I do different. One difference is that when you’re doing a play, you know the whole story before you start rehearsals, but in a soap, you just have to take what comes when you get the scripts and see if that turns into something that tells you a little more about the character.
Are you looking forward to seeing Timothy on the show?
For now, here’s a look at what’s coming up…