Hollyoaks‘ Hutchinson family expands even more in 2020 with the introduction of Verity, dynamic legal eagle daughter of Edward (Joe McGann) and half-sister to Tony (Nick Pickard).
The estranged sibling of the soap’s longest-serving character arrives in Monday 6th January’s E4 showing, and while she makes quite the immediate impact it’s in the one-off post-watershed special Hollyoaks Later, airing at 9pm that night on E4, that vivacious Verity really makes her presence felt.
RadioTimes.com spoke to newcomer Eva O’Hara about playing the plumb part, her first job out of drama school, and why Hollyoaks was her guilty childhood pleasure!
How would you describe Verity?
She is a princess, big time, and very aware she is the apple of her father’s eye. Edward instilled a confidence in her which continues in all her interactions. We did a character workshop where we decided Verity was definitely head girl at school, she’s always had status and entitlement – she’s never heard ‘no’ and would not accept it! Like Edward she has swanned through life. Her mantra is: ‘Don’t apologise’.
Is she a villain?
It’s more that she admires villainy as a concept and for the intelligence it requires, but I don’t think she herself is inherently evil. She says things that shock and come across as privileged, but she has the ability to read any situation and figure out where to place herself in order to get people on side and respect her. ‘Sharp’ and ‘smart’ are words more suited to her than plain evil, which gives her more longevity and balance as a character rather than have her come in twirling a moustache straight away.
Her relationship with Edward sounds intense…
Verity is extremely aware of his Machiavellian ways and she is sometimes a mediator for him. Weirdly that gives her a kind of warmth. Joe McGann and Alex Fletcher (Diane Hutchinson) have been a blessing to work with, the majority of my scenes so far have been with them. This is my first job out of drama school and I’d never been on a working set before, so to be with wonderful established actors was like a real immediate family off screen. They have reached out to me and been lovely.
What about Tony, have they ever met?
I don’t think they ever have. Verity has grown up knowing she has a big brother out there and I reckon has formed an idea of who he might be. I imagine her drawing pictures of him as a little girl and she’s fascinated and excited about meeting him one day, although when she arrives he’s obviously not around. I have met Nick, what a guy, so instantly charming and welcoming. He bought me a McDonald’s breakfast on my second day! I instantly felt part of the family and got absolute big brother vibes from Nick. He is Hollyoaks royalty.
Verity and Sami get very close in the Later episode, are they a good match?
Yes, you’ll see she makes a beeline for that boy! Me and Rishi Nair, who plays him, reckon they are a good match on both a physical and intellectual level. Their chemistry and spark comes from verbal repartee. Verity doesn’t shy away when it comes to men, so the second she decides on her prey she swoops in!
Were you a Hollyoaks fan before you got the part?
I used to secretly record it when I was about 10 or 11 and secretly watch it in bed, pretending to do my homework! My parents were very keen for me to be studying, obviously! So it was kind of my guilty pleasure. Now my parents have been religiously watching Hollyoaks since the second it was announced I’d got the part, and they’ve been texting me their thoughts on all the storylines. My mum adores Sami and is delighted I’m going to be working with him!
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