Coronation Street bosses are in a panic trying to re-jiggle their storyline schedules after Nigel Havers was offered a very affricative panto offer.
Havers, who has recently returned to our screens as ex-gigolo Lewis Archer in the award-winning soap, has reportedly been offered a six figure salary for five weeks of panto, playing Fleshcreep in Jack And The Bean Stalk, at Southampton’s Mayflower Theatre.
This comes at at time where sources have revealed that bosses of the ITV show want to sign up the legendary actor full-time, so are now desperately trying to see if they can write his leave of absence into the show, in December.
This will not be the first time Havers has appeared in panto, having previously appeared as Captain Hook in Peter Pan, however the fee attached this time around has made it far too difficult for the veteran to decline, reportedly earning him a whopping £200,000 – more than he earned for his two spells in the Street.
A Corrie source said: “Nigel is adored. But there was no way he could turn down the cash on offer.”
Soap producers are worried that his departure will be a big blow for the fans as well as the writers and that this new development may mess up plans to keep viewers in the dark about whether Lewis and Audrey Roberts (Sue Nicholls) would set up home together.
Havers character is currently in the middle of a heart attack storyline involving his on-screen partner, Audrey and viewers had hoped that the pair would finally settle down and prove everyone wrong, however now it looks more likely that Lewis will end up breaking the fragile heart of the salon owner (ish) again as he hot foots it out of Weatherfield for a second time.
To watch Havers’ Loose Women appearance, click on the clip below:
Coronation Street can be seen Monday, Thursday and Friday evenings on ITV1 / ITV1 HD.